Inaugural Maine Science Festival Set for Bangor | Events

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Inaugural Maine Science Festival Set for Bangor

New event to the region aims to demonstrate, Science is Everywhere!

Inaugural event set for March 20-22, 2015 with dozens of thought-provoking events at Cross

Center – Maine Science Festival organizers think Science is really fun to talk about, for all ages and venues throughout downtown

Science is everywhere and the organizers of the Inaugural Maine Science Festival want to prove it. So as they designed the more than forty events planned as part of the inaugural festival, they decided to try and make something for everyone. After all, you don’t have to be an adult to find interest in alternative energies or a child to appreciate the technology behind Pixar movies.

The result is the first ever Maine Science Festival set to take place in Bangor from March 20 – 22. The event is meant not only to teach, but also to get people together and get them talking, with Maine’s premier, nationally recognized, science and technology experts, companies and organizations gathered for the first time under one roof: Jackson Laboratory, MDI Biological Laboratory, Bigelow Laboratory, multiple departments and divisions of the University of Maine, and the Maine Mathematics and Science Alliance (MMSA) along with dozens of other community partners and organizations.

“The Maine Science Festival is our chance to let people know about the remarkable, world-leading research that happens every day in Maine.” said Kate Dickerson, the festivals founder and director. “We are going to spend the weekend talking about all of the amazing work that is happening in Maine and beyond, done by innovative scientists who are leaders in their fields and who want to share their love of science to all. The best part about the MSF is that you don't need to be a scientist to enjoy it and walk away learning something. With discussions, workshops, hands-on events, and art exhibits all part of the Maine Science Festival, we will be able to reach people aged 3 to 93 no matter what their interest!  By celebrating science, we'll be able to put a spotlight on the research that is moving Maine forward, and help people recognize that science is truly everywhere.”

Dickerson began planning for the event 2 years ago and has engaged dozens of collaborators to help her design and plan the event. The Maine Science Festival – the first of its kind in the state – will bring together a wide range of attendees, taking science out of the classroom and into restaurants, museums, libraries, galleries and hopefully even onto street corners. MSF is 3 days of events, all free with the exception of the headliner event, Academy Award winning scientist Tony DeRose from Pixar Studios, taking place on Saturday, March 21st at the Cross Insurance Center. Dickerson and the other festival organizers hope for exponential growth as the concept catches on much like other popular city-wide science festivals that have seen success in Philadelphia and Atlanta.

Events are all ages, including various talks, panels and demonstrations. A complete list of Festival events is available at, but below is a sampling of the signature events curated by the MSF team.

Science on Tap:  Sex, Drugs & Rock n’Roll 

7:00pm - 10:00pm, Big Easy Lounge ,  Friday, March 20               

What does science have to do with popular culture? Plenty! Combine libation, laughter, and lessons you’ll never forget.

7PM-Sex-Tony Sohns will provide insight on the fascinating world of insect reproduction

8PM-Drugs: Anthropologist Cindy Isenhour will lead us on a journey exploring the historical and cultural significance of hallucinogenic plants

9PM- Rock & Roll: How do artists synthesize the sounds we hear in music today? Representatives from the New England School of Communication will demonstrate audio engineering and show some tricks of the trade

Suggested Audience: Must be 21 years and older

Crime Scene Investigation   

9:00am - 5:00pm, Cross Center-MR B , Saturday, March 21

Walk through a simulated crime scene, discover evidence, and develop a case theory. What crimes were committed, who are the victims, and who are the alleged defendants? What information do you need to get search and arrest warrants? Elementary, dear Watson! Presented and sponsored by Husson University.

Suggested audience: All ages

Tech Today: Drones & Ethics              

12:15pm - 1:15pm,  Bangor Public Library, Saturday, March 21        

We have the technology, but how should we use it? This program includes a demonstration of drones as a jumping-off point for discussion around the ethics technological application.

Suggested audience: High school and older

The Science of Home Brewing

1:00pm – 5:00pm, Central Street Farmhouse,  Saturday, March 21          

Expert brewer Zeth Lundy will lead a workshop on Brew in a Bag, the fastest, most economical option for home brewers. Food scientist Jason Bolton will team up with Zeth and explain the science of the brewing process.

Suggested audience: 21 years and older.

Headliner: Tony DeRose of Pixar

7:30pm, Cross Center-Ballroom, Saturday, March 21

Come hear Academy Award winning Pixar scientist Tony DeRose discuss the magic on the screen and the science behind the scenes! Featuring a series of Pixar shorts, DeRose will give the audience unique insight into the science that makes it all possible, from physics and fluid dynamics to computer science and engineering. A Q&A session will follow the presentation! Space is limited and tickets are required.

Suggested audience: Ages 10 and older

Tickets are $15 for adults, $10 for students, and seating will be reserved. Buy your tickets. This is the only paid event of the 3 day Festival.

State Science Fair        

8:30am - 12:15pm , Cross Center-Ballroom , Saturday, March 21

Join esteemed judges—scientists, engineers, mathematicians, teachers, and other STEM professionals—in viewing Maine high school students’ poster presentations of their original research. Presented in collaboration with The Jackson Laboratories (JAX).

The suggested audience for this event: All ages

5-Minute Genius
3:00pm-5:30pm, Cross Center-Ballroom , Sunday, March 22         

Meet the rock stars of Maine’s scientific sector as they explain their research in five minutes or less! You will feel like a genius in no time! Want more? Stick around for Q&A and a reception after this closing event.

Suggested audience: All ages


One of the first celebrations of its kind in the State, the Maine Science Festival is a 3-day celebration of science and technology in everyday places – parks, restaurants, bars, libraries and museums that aims to prove that science truly is everywhere. Organizers and partners of MSF want to encourage attendees to question the world around them and to inspire not only the next generation of scientists and engineers, but also facilitate grass roots scientific thinking at the citizen level. Hundreds of partners and community volunteers are working together to produce the Festival, which runs March 20-22.  To learn more, visit or call Festival Director, Kate Dickerson at (207)-478-9548.