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Conversation, ideas and events for parents in Santa Rosa and Sonoma County

Unleash your family's inner scientist at this year's annual Bay Area Science Festival. From October 27th - November 3rd, events geared to expand the mind through hands on fun will delight and inspire.

Many of the favorite events from last year's festival are making a repeat appearance this year. Here is what you have to look forward to:

Bay Area Star Party: On Friday, October 26, a pre-fest Bay Area Star Party is going on at 10 different Bay Area locations, including at SSU in Rohnert Park from 8-10 p.m. with a focus on "Our Nearest Neighbor, The Moon." Bring your own telescope, or use one of the many available through astronomers assisting with viewing tips and information. More info can be found at www.phys-astro.sonoma.edu/publicviewingnight.shtml.

Discover Day North Bay: On Saturday, Oct 27, the Sonoma County Fairgrounds will be host to numerous exhibits and demonstrations. Best part? It's all free - including parking! This year's exhibits include a catapult competition, giant soap bubbles, the infamous diet soda and Mentos trick, wild cats, an ER robot, space discovery stations, flying and crawly things, and so much more. 11 a.m. - 4 p.m. 1350 Bennett Valley Rd.

Science on the Screen, Math & Pixar: On Sunday, Oct 28, Tony DeRose, the Senior Scientist at Pixar Animation Studios, will visit the Smith Rafael Film Center in San Rafael to share the exciting advancements in film making through computer technology, computational Physics, geometry, and applied math. He'll be using many examples from Pixar's feature films, presenting the role math plays on screen. $12 general admission, $9 for members of the California Film Institute. 7-9 p.m. 1118 Fourth St., San Rafael.

When Worlds Collide & Star Gazing: On Saturday, Nov 3, Planetologist Kevin Zahnie from NASA will give a presentation on early impacts of the Earth (including the extinction of dinosaurs), and how impacts have and could affect life in our world. Free. 7-10:30 pm. Cushing Memorial Ampitheater, Mt. Tam State Park. 801 Panoramic Hwy, Mill Valley.

Non-local events include Science Superheroes where 5 scientists will share the stories of their research and discoveries, Zombie Nightlife with an after sundown party including human brain viewing (and touching!) amidst a party of events, and a "Passport to Science" that includes visits to the volcanoes in Clayton, food science tours, wetland hikes, and so much more. Plus, AT&T Park will host an end of festival Discover Days partyon November 3rd from 11am-4pm with more than 150 exhibits and interactive programs going on round the clock.

And there's so much more. For a full schedule of this year's Bay Area Science Festival, visit bayareascience.org.

Tags: Bay Area Science Festival, events

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