The fourth annual Arkansas Science Festival takes place October 19-21. Modeled after science festivals that take place in other states, this year’s festival was put together by educators at Arkansas State University, with assistance through the Science Festival Alliance. Dr. Amy Pearce is professor of psychology at Arkansas State University and is director of the Arkansas Science Festival. She tells how this got started.
“The Arkansas Science Festival really stemmed from years of consideration from a group of us here on the A-State campus,” said Pearce. “We were thrilled when we learned of the Science Festival Alliance and that they were providing mentorship for campuses and organizations that were interested in hosting science festivals.”
Pearce says there has been an increasing interest in science festivals across the nation.
“Science festivals have been growing nationwide for several years and this science festival is part of a larger group of science festivals,” says Pearce. “We all get mentored and resources are provided to us through the Science Festival Alliance. We are the only formal science festival in our state.”
Dr. Pearce explains what science festivals are.
“Science festivals can be seen as a celebration of science, or a party for the mind. If you have ever been to a music festival, think of a music festival that runs for several days, except the content that will be emphasized will be science. There will be lots of hands-on demonstrations of science, technology, engineering, mathematics, and even health professions. We have workshops and performances, and we hope these activities will capture the unique fabric of science in Arkansas.”
She tells what the goal for this year’s science festival is.
“Our primary goal with the Arkansas Science Festival is for the community to join us in this celebration of science,” says Pearce. “We think that people have fun as they are learning things and are learning about the importance of science, technology, engineering and math as they participate in these very interactive exhibits.”
The Arkansas Science Festival this year consists of a free event on Thursday, October 19 called “Mindfulness Through Body Awareness”. This free event takes place at 5:30 and at 7:00 p.m. at the Carl R. Reng Student Union on the A-State campus. Two performances from Kevin Delaney will take place on Thursday, October 20 at the Fowler Center. His performances are at 10:30 am and at 1:00 pm. Crazy Science will take place at the ASU Museum on October 20 from 11:00 am to 2:00 pm. There will be a lot of hands on activities during Crazy Science. Finally, the Science Expo takes place on October 21 from 10:00 am to 2:00 pm at the A-State Student Activity Center. More information is at 870-972-3282.