Wanted: Exploration stations for Wisconsin Science Fest, Oct. 16–19

Here we are approaching the dog days of summer, and yet it’s also time to start looking ahead to the UW-Madison science outreach calendar for 2014-2015.

This coming year will include at least three major multi-day events that welcome the public to their public, land-grant research university:  The Wisconsin Science Festival October 16-19, UW-Madison Science Expeditions March 19-21, and Engineering Expo over three days in mid April.

As the committee that is organizing the Wisconsin Science Festival’s Discovery Expo, we are delighted to invite you to present a hands-on Exploration Station featuring your research or outreach work.

The Exploration Stations for Discovery Expo will be hosted by the Town Center in the Discovery Building, 330 N. Orchard.

We’re especially looking for Exploration Stations on Thursday October 16, Friday October 17, and Sunday October 19.  Happily (and thanks to many of you),  we’re already fully booked for Saturday October 18.

The Exploration Stations on Thursday and Friday will run from 9 am to 2 pm and will be working primarily with school children.  We are expecting 1500 students ranging from elementary to high school.  They’ll be coming from Wisconsin, Illinois, Iowa, Minnesota, Indiana and Michigan.

The Stations on Sunday will run from 10 am to 2 pm and will be interacting with individual visitors, small groups & families.

This will be a chance to share your work with learners of all ages from across our community, from around Wisconsin, and from our neighboring states.

For those of you with NSF grants or other similar federal funding that rewards work in broader impacts of research and in broadening participation in science, the Science Festival, UW Science Expeditions, Engineering Expo and similar events can help you showcase and document the power of your research as well as the reach of your public engagement.

To sign up to provide an Exploration Station at Discovery Expo on Thursday Oct 16, Friday Oct 17 or Sunday Oct 19, please go to

There you’ll have a chance to provide information about you and your organization and about your Exploration Station.

When you get to the part about “Event Type,” please check the box next to “Discovery Expo; Exploration Station (hands-on activity)”.

When you get to the part about “Proposal Review; for internal use,” please include the date or dates (Oct 16, Oct 17 or Oct 19) that you’d like to provide your Exploration Station.  Volunteering for multiple dates is appreciated.  In the happy event that we get requests for more Exploration Stations than we can host on one day, we will be in touch with you to see if it might be possible to shift things around in a way that still fits your schedule.

We are grateful for your consideration of this invitation to help advance the Wisconsin Idea during the Wisconsin Science Festival.  We hope you’ll watch for similar invitations for UW Science Expeditions, Engineering Expo and other events as the opportunities arise over the coming months.  It’s going to be a great year for welcoming the public to UW-Madison!

For any questions or suggestions, please feel free to contact Tom Zinnen at or 608 265 2420.

Tom Zinnen, Laura Heisler, Travis Tangen, Robin Schmoldt, Anne Whisner and Becky Balistreri
Discovery Expo Committee, Wisconsin Science Festival 2014