Sunday, January 16, 2011

Organizing underway for Arizona Science & Technology Festival

Planning is moving quickly for a 2012 Arizona Science and Technology Festival intended to rival the best such events in the nation. Jeremy Babendure, who was co-director of the hugely successful San Diego Science Festival, has moved to Arizona State University to set up a major event for Arizona. Jeremy told me that in just under two months they have met with over 50 organizations in industry, academia, the community and K12 and now have over 100 concepts in the works and likely 200 by the end of February. The first USA Science & Engineering Fair, held on the Capitol Mall in Washington, DC this past fall, was an incredible success [right] drawing 500,000 visitors to over 1,500 free ehibits. 2012 is Arizona's Centennial year which should provide an incentive to make our event special.

AZGS will be assisting Jeremy and his team with engaging the Tucson community in the Festival. He graciously agreed to let me share their list of tentative concepts from the early meetings. Remember, these are all subject to change. And if you want to become involved, contact Jeremy:

Jeremy Babendure, Ph.D., Director, Arizona Science and Technology Festival
Office of Public Affairs, Arizona State University
Email:, Phone: 480-250-7764

Here's the preliminary list of ideas:

In the field science and collaborator events - Interface with science professionals in the field at local companies, institutions, research centers and parks. Dozens of programs already proposed from organizations including Arizona Game and Fish, ASU, Barrows Neurological Institute, Botanical Gardens, CHW, Project Wet, Southwest School of Naturopathic Medicine

- Crayfish Boil - Arizona Game and Fish
- Highways and Wildlife – Arizona Game and Fish
- Discovery Day - Southwest School of Naturopathic Medicine
- Walk For Brain Tumor Research - Students Supporting Brain Tumor Research
- Arizona Water Festivals - Project Wet
- A Day at Barrows Neurological Institute - Barrows Neurological Institute
- FutureScape City Nanotechnology Tour - ASU’s CSPO
- A Mathematical Walking Tour of the Botanical Gardens - Carole Greenes, ASU Prime

Neighborhood Science Conversations - Experience science one’s own neighborhood with dozens of programs that highlight exciting careers in science, foster debate on pressing issues of the day, provide hands-on experiences for people of all ages

- Chandler – Innovations; Gangplank
- Glendale – Deer Valley Rock Art Center
- Mesa – Mesa Community College; Polytechnic Elementary
- Phoenix – University Public School; Benchmark Charter School
- Scottsdale – Skysong
- Tempe – ASU Museum of Anthropology, ASU Museum of Art, Barrett Honors College

- From Fish to Hook - Arizona Game and Fish
- Arizona Wildlife – Arizona Game and Fish
- Build Your Own Optical Illusion - Steve Macknik and Susan Martinez-Conde Lab
- Mind and Machine - Kinetic Muscles
- Toy Shop Engineering – EVIT
- Science of Collaboration - Gangplank
- The art of science – Gangplank Junior
- Intro into Computer Programming Using Scratch – Gangplank Junior
- Intro into Electronics – Gangplank Junior
- Intro into Robotics – Gangplank Junior
- Intro into Green Science – Gangplank Junior
- Intro into Bioscience – Gangplank Junior
- Intro into Space Exploration – Gangplank Junior
- Intro into Geology – Gangplank Junior
- Biotech Teacher Workshop - Adrienne Scheck
- Science is Fun – ASU CEEE
- GPA: Is it a plague on education? - ASU School of Business
- Big Brother and Technology - ASU College of Law
- Intellectual Property and Entrepreneurship - ASU College of Law
- Health Care and Entrepreneurship - ASU College of Law
- Does My Dog Have Valley Fever? - ASU SOLS
- The Future of Health Monitoring – Biodesign
- Hohokam Canals and Long Term Water Use - ASU SHESC
- Soil Labs to determine prehistoric land use - ASU SHESC
- Uncovering Myths of 2012 - ASU SHESC
- Forensic Anthropology - ASU SHESC
- Model of Complex Systems - ASU SHESC
- Travelogues about Ethiopia, Tanzania, and South Africa - ASU SHESC
- Pandemics in Arizona - ASU SHESC
- Alternative Imaginations: Rethinking Knowledge Systems – ASU CSPO
- Science Debates –ASU CSPO

Science Cafe's
- Anne Stone, Neanderthals – ASU SHESC
- Brenda Baker, mummies – ASU SHESC
- CSPO will produce 3 science cafĂ©’s, including one in Spanish

Signature Events - High energy, thought provoking events that draw crowds in the hundreds to thousands. Events already in development include:
- The Science of Magic – Steve Macknik and Susan Martinez-Conde
- Medical Careers of the Future – CHW
- Weird Science – Gangplank
- 2 Premiere Origins events - ASU Origins

World Premiere Conferences - Multiple world-class science conferences will be planned and draw visitors to Arizona during the Festival to experience the exciting events.
- International Conference of Sustainable Science, ASU GIOS
- Conference on Law and Sustainability, ASU College of Law

EXPO Booths and Performances - highly visible exhibition providing engagement and exchange opportunities for children, teens, families, and local science professionals with dozens of hands-on activities, performances, interactive demos, science challenges, and family-oriented science entertainment.
- Prehistoric Kids Zone - Deer Valley Rock Art Center
- The Egg Drop Challenge - Coyote Middle School
- Science, Innovation and Entrepreneurship - Miss Science and Biz in a Boxx
- Hands-on displays of fossils and bones and/or “digging for fossils” display - ASU SHESC
- Letters to Lucy” as an interactive booth; hosted by - ASU SHESC
- Legacies on the Landscape - ASU SHESC
- Solar Innovations – ASU Fulton School of Engineering
- Bioengineering (Robotic Arms, Man-Machine Interface) – ASU Fulton School of Engineering
- Aerospace and Mission – ASU Fulton School of Engineering
- Helping Blind with Imaging Tools – ASU Fulton School of Engineering
- “Ask a Biologist” - ASU SOLS
- Science is Fun - ASU CEEE
- One if By Land, Two if By Sea, Math in Our Nation’s History - ASU Prime

Zone 100 Presenters - pairing 100 of Arizona’s most inspiring leaders in science & technology with local secondary schools
- Mark Jacobs – Dean, Barrett Honors College
- Chuck Kazilek - “Ask a Biologist’s Dr. Biology” ASU SOLS
- Lawrence Krauss –Director Origins Initiative; Co-Director Cosmology Initiative
- Marty Schultz – Former VP of Pinnacle West Capital
- Quentin Wheeler – Dean, ASU College of Liberal Arts and Sciences
- Neal Woodbury – CSO, Biodesign

Year Round Programs
- Junior Researcher Speaker Series – Barrows and ASU Undergraduate Researchers
- The Art of Water – ASU SHESC, SRP, Maricopa County Office of Education
- School Water Audit – Project Wet
- Pay it Forward Science – Benchmark Charter School


  1. No hub in Flagstaff! So sad :(

  2. Actually, the annual Flagstaff science festival has been a great success and an inspiration that it can be replicated elsewhere in Arizona.

  3. I didn't think of that - I love the FFoS. I'm disappointed I won't get to do another tree ring table this year!