Wednesday, November 20, 2013

CSF Call for Entries & New SciStreet Van!

The deadline for submitting entries for next April's 
Cambridge Science Festival is December 6th!! 

Submit a proposal to run a program or host an event to be included in the festival, which will run days, nights & weekends from April 18 through April 27, 2014. We are looking for ideas that celebrate science, technology, engineering, art, and math in ways that combine spirit, interactivity and audience appeal. The festival will be held during public school vacation week and everyone is welcome!

New Van!

Science on the Street just got a new van to aid our efforts taking engaging science activities and demonstrations state-wide throughout the year! Look for the van at a community event or after school program near you! 

If you are interested in having Science on the Street visit you, email

If your organization is interested in joining Science on the Street click here!

Tuesday, November 5, 2013

Island Life, Art & Nature!

A great local organization called the ART+BIO Collaborative is offering an amazing opportunity to escape winter and explore art and nature in Puerto Rico!

Information about the program can be found here. The dates for the escape are January 10th-17th, 2014, with a registration deadline of December 1st.  Check it out!!

Puerto Rico!

Thursday, October 24, 2013

Discover STEM at Acton-Boxborough Regional HS on November 4th

Looking for a great way to spend your Monday evening?

On November 4th come to the Acton-Boxborough Regional HS cafeteria between 6pm and 8:30pm for the 2013 Discover STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering, Math) expo!

Science on the Street will be one of over 30 groups presenting engaging and interactive STEM activities and demonstrations!

More information can be found at the Acton PIP website

Hope to see you there!

Tuesday, October 22, 2013

National Chemistry Week & Elements

This week is National Chemistry Week - October 20-26!

Here are some information and activities for grades 4th-6th from the American Chemical Society.

You can learn more about the chemical elements in the world at  This website has fantastic images associated with each element, as well as how they are typically found or used.

The science festival also wants to get more involved with the elements for April! Please share the news below with artists and scientists!

Central Elements is a vivid streetscape of painted storefront windows representing science through the partnership of an expert, artist, and a chemical element. This event is a collaboration of the Cambridge Science Festival, Central Square Business Association, and the Central Square Cultural District to use Central Square as a cultural lab to further the CSF mission to make STEAM accessible, engaging, and fun for all!  Each window will represent different chemical elements and include a blurb with more information.

Call for Artists
Looking for artists who work in any medium that could be articulated and displayed in a storefront window.  Artist will pair with an expert on their chosen element or molecule.

Call for Experts
Interested in unique science outreach and collaborations with artists and business owners?  Help the festival team curate a list of 15-20 interesting elements and molecules for artists to depict.  Pair with an artist to take over a storefront window with art and create a blurb description of the element or molecule with the artist.

Minimum commitment: One introductory and brainstorming meeting with full group; 2-3 meetings with your paired artist/expert; stand by your piece on Sunday, April 27, 2014 from 2-4pm.

Please contact Sung Kim with questions or to express your interest in getting involved! More details to come at:

Wednesday, October 16, 2013

Science on the Street, BSA, and Upcoming Events!

Over Columbus Day weekend SciStreet visited the Massachusetts Boy Scouts Jamboree at the Barnstable County Fairgrounds. Over 7,000 scouts and staff from all over New England were challenged with energy and design activities!

Among the challenges were powering a small radio with a battery made out of fruits and vegetables. Groups of scouts experimented with series and parallel circuits, and one group used a total of 8 potatoes and apples to get almost 12 Volts out of the system!

Scouts build a battery out of apples, lemons and potatoes!

Starting to string things together in series to increase the voltage.  Here are some simple instructions on how to build your own fruit & veggie battery.

Groups also tried out the Marshmallow Challenge.

Using just 20 strands of spaghetti, 1 meter of masking tape, and 1 meter of string, teams must build the tallest free-standing structure that can hold the marshmallow on top!

Teams start the Marshmallow Challenge

The winning tower measured over 100 centimeters! (Troop 14 from Holliston)

Science on the Street goes beyond community festivals. Find us organizing workshops connecting classroom teachers with scientists, and at after school events. Check out new upcoming events where you can find Science on the Street in your community!

Tuesday, September 17, 2013

Science on the Street heads to Worcester stART!

This past Sunday Science on the Street teamed up with the Worcester Think Tank and the Art+Bio Collaborative to bring engaging science activities to the Worcester stART on the Street community event.

The event was filled with vendors displaying their artistic creations. Art+Bio Collaborative and Worcester Think Tank blended the lines of art and science with their interactive displays and activities, while Science on the Street staff and volunteers guided children of all ages through the design of paper rockets and launched them hundreds of feet into the air! See if you can make out the rocket just taking off in the first picture below.

For information on upcoming events where you can find Science on the Street, check out the Events page on the Cambridge Science Festival's website under the Science on the Street heading. Speaking of the Cambridge Science Festival, mark your calendars now for next years event which will take place from April 18th-27th, 2014, and check out the call for entries online form if you have a great idea for this years festival!
Volunteers watch as a local middle school student tests her rocket design by launching it high into the sky using her own power to compress air through a small diameter pipe.
Event attendees check out the Worcester Think Tank and Art+Bio Collaborative.

Wednesday, August 7, 2013

Hello All,

The summer is in full swing and the Cambridge Science Festival (CSF) team has had some time to relax after a successful festival this past April. My name is Jesse Billingham, and last week I joined the CSF team as the new coordinator for the Science on the Street program (SciStreet). SciStreet is the mobile arm of the CSF that aims to bring engaging Science, Technology, Engineering, Art, and Math (STEAM) activities, exercises and demonstrations to community and cultural events throughout Massachusetts, year-round. I am excited to work with a great team!

This past Monday the SciStreet team was fortunate to participate in Camp Miracles and Magic. This week-long camp invites children from across the region who were born with HIV to a fun and welcoming place. On Monday the campers were able to explore a variety of engaging science activities including building paper rockets, kites, helicopters, and exploring how electrical circuits work with home-made play dough! In addition, Terry Murray "The Inventor Mentor" was on hand with the SciStreet team with his water rockets and cannon which provided a lot of fun and a nice way to cool off!

For information on upcoming Science on the Street events, please visit the Science on the Street website, and follow the CSF blog for updates on where we've been and where we're going in your community!

Wednesday, April 3, 2013

Passion of the Cosmos

Here we are, a mere 9 days from the kick-off to the Cambridge Science Festival!

Have you booked your tickets? Have you checked to see who else is coming?

Beware! Some details in the print program have been updated.

And now... hear about today's CSF event highlight from organizer, Andrew:

The Passion of the Cosmos: 
Scientists on Evolution, Cosmology, and Religion: Open Forum
Sunday, April 21, 2:00pm-3:45pm

The Monastery of the Society of St. John the Evangelist, 980 Memorial Dr., Cambridge

Tuesday, April 2, 2013

Wallace Day

We're now just 10 days away from the start of the Cambridge Science Festival!

Have you made your plans?  Check out our Event Index for a quick scan of all events.

And our event of the day...

A real-life Indiana Jones and co-discoverer of evolution by natural selection?
Come learn more about the life of Alfred Russel Wallace at Wallace Day at the Harvard Museum of Natural History!
By Morgan Corner

We all know about the infamous theory of evolution by natural selection by the esteemed Charles Darwin, but who is Alfred Russel Wallace? How did he contribute to the history of evolution? Alfred Russel Wallace (1823-1913), who is considered the father of evolutionary biogeography, contributed to numerous subjects during the 19th century. In addition to co-discovering the process of evolution by natural selection with Darwin in 1858, Wallace was a famous English naturalist, geographer, anthropologist, travel writer, collector, explorer and spiritualist! Wallace explored numerous regions, including the Amazon and Indonesian areas. He even managed to explore the Rio Negro farther than anyone else had yet! His adventurous explorations in foreign, indigenous regions earned him the nickname of a real-life “Indiana Jones”.

Wednesday, March 27, 2013

A Brief History of Earth Day: a View from 28,000 Miles

We're now 16 days away from the Science Festival, and my attempt at a daily countdown has gone woefully awry. Ah, well. We're excited about the countdown here in the festival office. Our program guides are starting to make the rounds, and we're working hard to get them out to you through as many different avenues as possible.

Our event highlight of the day is the Earth Day Celebration at the EcoTarium on Friday, April 19th.

A Brief History of Earth Day: a View from 28,000 Miles
by: Alex Dunn

We all know Earth Day as a day that promotes positive behavior, raises awareness for critical global issues and builds community. The first Earth Day celebrations occurred in cities and towns across the U.S. on April 22, 1970. Attributed to the support of Wisconsin Senator Gaylord Nelson, those first Earth Day “protests” bottled the fire of the 1960s, bringing together students, activists, politicians and neighbors. Earth Day’s early success was so influential that it’s credited for spurring the creation of the Clean Air and Clean Water Acts, and the Endangered Species Act.

Friday, March 22, 2013

Pre-register for CSF Events!

Hi folks,

We're 21 days out!

Have you been seeing our banners going up around town?

Also, our printed programs arrived today!  

They are available at the MIT Museum (265 Massachusetts Ave.).  We would also love help distributing them into your communities!  Please contact us, and let us know how many you'd like to pick up!

21 days from the festival seems like a good time to start booking tickets and spaces for Cambridge Science Festival events.  So, instead of a highlighted event, feast your eyes on -

Events that suggest or require pre-registration, or are selling advance tickets:

Wednesday, March 20, 2013

Rock The Planet with Yuri's Night this April!

We're 23 days away from the Cambridge Science Festival, and our event highlight of the day is "Yuri's Night with Student Astronomers of Harvard-Radcliffe!"

Rock the Planet with Yuri's Night this April!
by Brice Russ, Yuri's Night Assistant Director

April 12 is more than just the first day of the Cambridge Science Festival--it's a major milestone in space exploration!

Monday, March 18, 2013

To Do Science Is Human

25 Days to #cambscifest 2013!  Today's featured event by Arend Sluis of the Friends of the Cambridge Public Library!

To Do Science is Human 
By Arend Sluis, Friends of the Cambridge Public Library

It's easy to forget that science is fundamentally a human activity. It's part of who we are to explore and discover, but journal articles, as a rule, often leave out the human experience of being a scientist. An article will, for example, not mention the freezing temperatures on the mountaintop while observing a galaxy 30 million light-years away nor the realization half-way through the night that it was the wrong galaxy! A reader will get just the facts (mostly). But there's so much more to the act of science: the tedium, the frustrations, and the sheer joy of doing science.

Carefully scrubbing away the human element often divides the "arts and humanities" from "science", but in recent decades there have been plenty of attempts to jump the divide from both sides: T-shirts with nerdy facts, riffs on (misunderstood) concepts, and even a journal abstract in rhymed couplets.

If you want to do some divide-jumping yourself, come to one of our two events at the Cambridge Science Festival: Science & Poetry on Tuesday April 16th, or Science & Comics on Saturday April 20th, all at the Cambridge Public Library.

Thursday, March 14, 2013

29 Days til #cambscifest 2013

Did you know that today is Pi Day?  3/14!

So, what exactly is π? Well, it's not this:
Though it does look darn tasty.
π is a mathematical constant of the ratio of a circle's circumference to its diameter.

So, happy Pi Day!

With just a few weeks before the 2013 Festival, it's time to start our #eventcountdown.

The event of the day...

A Creative Collective: The Computer Clubhouse as Design Studio
The Computer Clubhouse at the Museum of Science, Boston
Saturday, April 13th 1-4pm
Recommended for ages 10-18

Wednesday, March 13, 2013

Cambridge Science Festival 2013!

Can you believe we're a month out from the 2013 Cambridge Science Festival?

  Now, take a deep breath here before reading on.  I'm about to drop a lot of information in your laps.  Don't run away and don't get overwhelmed.  (It's worth it, I promise!)

We get a lot of questions at the festival like, "My kids are 5 and 8.  What events are good for them?" or "What should I send our 15 year old daughter to?" or "I'm an adult that never went to science fairs even as a kid. What should I look at?"

So, I've gone through our Event Index, and selected some particularly interesting events for groups: Families+ (which means events appropriate for small children accompanied by their parents up through teens and adults), Teens+ (appropriate for teens and adults), and Adults (um... yea).

Note: our lovely K-12 Coordinator, Peg LeGendre, put together a larger listing of festival events for families, students, and teachers. Available here as pdf.

So here we go:

Tuesday, March 5, 2013

Help Us Spread the Word! And an Update

At our last count, we were at 139 different events in the 2013 festival program!  We're working hard to make sure these events are accessible, interactive, and fun for everyone.  But we're looking for your help to make sure everyone knows about it!

We've printed up some beautiful Save the Date postcards.  Can you put some out in your community (schools, libraries, churches, coffeeshops, etc.)?  Contact Us and let us know how many you can use!

Or, send out the electronic version to your networks!

Thank you for your help!

An update!
Here we are in March, and we're steaming along on festival planning.

Want to see what we've been working on?  Check out the current Schedule of Events online for the 2013 Festival!  Hope you've marked your calendars for Friday, April 12 - Sunday, April 21.

Some quick highlights...

Monday, February 11, 2013

AAAS Family Science Days

Excited for the Cambridge Science Festival in April?

Come see us at the AAAS Family Science Days this weekend at the Hynes Convention Center in Boston!  We'll be there with a boatload of awesome folks from (50!) organizations in the science world around town.  Come by for hands-on science, technology, engineering, and math activities and demonstrations Saturday 2/16 and/or Sunday 2/17 11am-5pm.

See a schedule of shows, list of exhibitors, and pre-register for free on the Family Science Days website: or at Hynes this weekend!