Tuesday, November 7, 2017

Santa Rose Fires and the Science Discovery Day

The 7th annual North Bay Science Discovery Day on October 28 at the Sonoma County Fairgrounds in Santa Rosa was an astounding success!

The NorCal chapter took the rover and base stations for a hands on demonstration in Santa Rosa. Our group was not sure whether the event will be held or not, whether the public will be there or not. The fires that swept through the area were some of the worst in decades if not in the century.

In the words of our own Scott Davis:

"This area suffered from the recent terrible fires and I thought they might end up cancelling the event, but they're still planning on holding it in order to instill a sense of normalcy to the community and have something for the kids to do.  So our participation in this event will be a way our chapter can help the people in this community who are rebuilding."

We did participate and it was a resounding success both for our group but also for the community and all the other exhibitors. Here's just some of the feedback from the community.

"Thank you for holding the science festival! I, along with about 3,000 others in Santa Rosa, lost our homes in the horrible fires. My son, his friends, and others in Sonoma County had a great time at the [NBSDD}! We cannot thank you enough for holding the event here." ~~ Kim

""Just wanted to congratulate you and your team on another NBSDD! Considering the circumstances of the prior weeks, it's fantastic that this event still went on and became a gathering space for kids and people interest in science." ~~ Victor

"I am so happy to be here as a volunteer today! I lost my home in the fire, and my family decided to move into my mother's abandoned farm house. For two weeks I have done nothing but clean, cry, and clean. I am so happy to have a break that involves happy faces and a change of pace. Thank you!" ~~ Marie

The kids were absolutely enthusiastic about the event, many kids spent hours in the various labs and hands on science activities. Kids consistently said that they "wanted to rebuild Santa Rosa." It was a cathartic even for many. The NBSDD makes a huge difference every year, but this year its impact went beyond just science or technology. It was a true display of community using the tools of science to further everyday lives, rebuild communities and prevents catastrophies like this in the future.

We are proud as a Mars NorCal chapter to have the privilege to be part of this event. Well done everyone.

Some fun stats from the event:

The amount of giant Humboldt squid dissected by kids.

The amount of glue at Medtronic's booth to produce 1,000 bags of slime.

Used by the Buck Institute for tasting instant ice cream.

Views in one day on SnapChat through NBSDD geofilter.

Watching KZST's DJ Brent Farris using FaceBook Live at NBSDD.

Cost to anyone who attended.