Want to learn how to build a rocket? make your very own cuddly bacteria or meet a NASA astronaut at Scifest 2012! From the strange to the serious – here’s some amazing kids workshops and events for parents not to be missed. Themed ‘what makes us tick?’ the New Zealand International Science Festival will take place in Dunedin in the first week of the school holidays, from 30 June to 8 July. Some of the workshops are free but do require booking and fill up quickly, make sure you don’t miss out!


Top Scifest events include:

Street Science and Family Fun Quiz night with Chris KP

Join Chris Krishna-Pillay, one of Australia’s most prominent science communicators in a whole series of events including street science with science buskers around the city, Sci.demo’s and a family fun quiz night, to entertain all.

Saturday 30 June 12 – 1pm Sci.demo @ Wall Street Mall, free

Saturday 30 June and Sunday 1 July, Street Science in the city, free

Sunday 1 July Family Fun Quiz Night, 6.00 – 8.00pm Castle Street Lecture Theatre 2, University of Otago Campus, cnr St David and Castle Streets, gold coin entry

What makes us tick? Let’s Tock! University of Otago Science Expo

With interactive displays and demonstrations covering anatomy to physiology and zoology for all ages. Sunday 1 July 12 – 6pm and Monday 2 July 9 – 4pm (anatomical body painting demo 12-1pm).

The Link, ISB Building, Cumberland Street opp the Museum Reserve, free

Build a rocket clinic @ MITRE 10 MEGA

Join the team to build and take home a rocket, plus a ride in a fire engine thanks to the Dunedin Fire Brigade Restoration Society. Children 6+ only (must be accompanied by an adult).

Sunday 1 July 10 – 12 noon, Mitre 10 Mega, 375 Andersons Bay Road. Free, bookings essential

Ph 03 455 3344 or reception@megadunedin.co.nz

Cuddly Bacteria

Make your very own cuddly bacterium to take home and love and learn a little along the way

Tuesday 3 July, 9.30 – 10.30am, 1.30-2.30pm or 3.00-4.00pm, free but bookings essential.

Under 12 years must be accompanied by an adult.

Workshop Central, Dunedin Public Library, Dunningham Suite, Moray Place. Ph 03 4743690 or library@dcc.govt.nz

Sci.demo Fear Factor Foods @ Wall Street Mall

Foods we love and foods we hate with University of Otago Food Science’s team – with a focus on things we wouldn’t normally eat. Do you have the guts to try them?

Tuesday 3 July 1.00pm – 2.00pm, Wall Street Mall, George Street, free

Sci.demo for kids with NASA and Physiology @ Wall Street

Join NASA astronaut Stephanie Wilson, mission specialist and experts from the University of Otago’s physiology department. Bring your questions and experience what it is like to go into space. See how your body has to adjust to help it cope with zero gravity!

Wednesday 4 July 12 noon – 1.00pm Wall Street Mall, 209 George Street, free

My life in space – with NASA Astronaut Stephanie Wilson

Take a look inside a space shuttle, experience life on a space station and hear first hand from a current space veteran of three space flights.

Wednesday 4 July 7.00 – 8.30pm. St David lecture theatre, University of Otago, cnr St David and Castle Streets. Adults $10pp, Family $25

Cafe Sci – do our genes justify our behaviours @ Staff Club Otago University

New discoveries in genetics have given insights into our behaviour – impacting on the way we think about human nature and our choices or are they pre-determined.

Wednesday 4 July 9.00pm, free

Space Survival @ Otago Museum

Ever wondered what it’s like to blast off into space? Join us with a real NASA Astronaut to discover what it takes to be an ultimate space survivor. Make your own mission patch, try space ice-cream and help us build a replica space shuttle.

Tuesday 3 July 1.30 – 3.00pm free, but bookings essential

Otago Museum Ph 03 474 7474, 419 King Street, Dunedin

Bang!!!! @ Allen Hall (University of Otago)

Blowing up history… a little piece at a time. Join the Outreach group from the University’s Department of Chemistry and science storyteller Andrew Scott as they present the story of BANG, a live action and interactive stage show for the pyrotechnically minded.

Gold coin entry. No bookings

Sunday 1 July and Monday 2 July 4.00 – 5.00pm, Tuesday 3 July 7.00 – 8.00pm

Allen Hall Theatre, 90 Union Street East, Dunedin

The Face; how we smile, frown and act the clown

Investigate what is going on beneath the skin. You’ll be guided to build up a face, muscles and other soft tissue including skin onto a plaster cast of a skull, in this fun workshop. Come along with your questions and get sculpting! All materials provided.

Wednesday 4 July, 9.30 – 10.30am, 11.00 – 12 noon or 1.30 to 2.30pm, free but bookings essential

Under 12 years must be accompanied by an adult.

Dunedin Public Library, Dunningham Suite, Moray Place. Ph 03 4743690 or library@dcc.govt.nz

Tickets go on sale Tuesday 5 June via TicketDirect www.ticketdirect or Wall Street Mall during the week of the festival.  Full programme details including all kids workshops available on www.scifest.org.nz or Ph 0800 SCIFEST

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This information was compiled by the Kiwi Families team.

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