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Cambridge Science Festival kicks off this weekend

Posted by Brock Parker  April 28, 2011 02:25 PM

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The 5th Annual Cambridge Science Festival kicks off this weekend offering more than a week of events including everything from a carnival to urban astronomy and a Nerdnite’s Nerdtacular.

The nine-day festival runs from Saturday through May 8 this year and is being presented by the MIT Museum in collaboration with the City of Cambridge and a number of community organizations and schools and universities.

On May 7, the festival will host the annual Science Carnival at the Cambridge Public Library at 449 Broadway from noon to 4 p.m. followed by an art and light performance called “Fast Light” on the Charles River that night.

But the festivities kick off this weekend with a festival-eve event Friday at 7:30 p.m. in The Laboratory at Harvard at 52 Oxford St. with "Big Ideas for Busy People," in which professors from Harvard and MIT will tackle topics ranging from the search for habitable worlds to street-fighting math and science. Every topic will be covered in a talk of 5 minutes or less, followed by five-minute question and answer period.

The festival begins Saturday with a campus-wide open house at MIT that includes free admission to the MIT Museum, at 265 Massachusetts Ave., and a number of demonstrations and activities in celebration of MIT’s 150th anniversary.

Events will continue all week with activities such as a chance to enjoy urban astronomy outside Cambridge City Hall Sunday, May 1 from 8 to 11 p.m. when a telescope will be set up to see what wonders of the universe are visible even in urban skies.

All week, visitors can also walk a half mile along the Charles River between Massachusetts Avenue and Ames Street to explore 4.6 billion years of Earth history through a scaled-down version of the geologic timeline in which each inch represents 240,000 years.

The MIT Museum will also host Nerdnite’s Nerdtacular on May 6 at 7:00 pm for discussions about architecture, ocean chemistry and biology.

A list of event for every day of the festival can be found online at CambridgeScienceFestival.org.

--brock.globe@gmail.com

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