Philadelphia Science Festival runs April 20-29

Posted: March 21, 2012

A bigger and better second annual Philadelphia Science Festival will explode all over town April 20-29, with more than 75 events planned over 10 days to spark inquiring (and newsy) minds. New and nifty for this year's fest:

To avoid overcrowding and disappointment, tickets (even the free ones) will be required for most events. The most notable exception is the 80-exhibitor-strong, April 21 outdoor Science Carnival on Logan Circle. Find out the who, what, where and whens at the Philly-based TicketLeap site. More event details (and a smartphone app) at philasciencefestival.org.

A Science Film Festival boasting nearly a dozen science- and tech-themed movies will be introduced, with East Coast premieres and award winners from other fests such as SXSW.

There's a new line of collectible T-shirts. And the Parkway event will have a second stage hosted by Kathy O'Connell from WXPN-FM's "Kids Corner."

Organized by the Franklin Institute, with backing by a National Science Foundation grant (as are similar, though university-backed, events in Cambridge, Mass., San Diego and San Francisco), this year's festival boasts participation from more than 100 local partner organizations. The emphasis at the festival is on fun and practical stuff that's meant to spark an interest in science but doesn't require an advanced degree in physics to appreciate, noted organizers at a festival preview event last night.

The Philadelphia Zoo will bring out its cutest animals. Lead sponsor Dow Chemical will show off its coolest tech. The Monell Chemical Senses Center will tout natural remedies. Drexel will share its dancing robots, which really groove to R&B. n

— Jonathan Takiff

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