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Visit CALS events during the Wisconsin Science Festival

This year’s Wisconsin Science Festival will be held Oct. 10–16, featuring over 300 in-person and virtual events through the state. During the week, CALS speakers will be participating in many events — a few are highlighted below.

The Warfarin Story: Public Discussion and Groundbreaking Ceremony

The Department of Biochemistry, Wednesday Nite @ the Lab, and WARF are presenting a landmark groundbreaking ceremony and public presentation to celebrate the American Chemical Society’s designation of warfarin as a National Chemical Historic Landmark.

This event is on Wednesday, Oct. 12, at 4:00 p.m. Read the full event information.

WARF Entrepreneurons: Lessons Learned

Kit Chow, biological systems engineering alumnus and co-founder of Boosted Chews, is a panelist in an Entrepreneurons panel focused on entrepreneurialism. Chow and three other UW alumni will discuss their entrepreneurialism stories.

This event is on Thursday, Oct. 13, at 4:00 p.m. Read the full event information.

Allen Centennial Garden

ACG is participating in a variety of ways in this year’s WiSciFest.

Hands-On Expo on 10/12 and 10/15 – During this hands-on expo for school groups, ACG will teach students about bees using their “bee kit”, which features puzzles showcasing how shapes fit together, and replica bees, photographs, and real beeswax.

Garden tours – On Wednesday, Oct. 12, ACG will host garden tours for students.

Science on the Square/Madison Night Market – You can find ACG near the capitol during the Science on the Square and Madison Night Market fusion event on Friday, Oct. 14, starting at 5:00 p.m. Search them out to learn all about bees!

Brunkard Lab

Three graduate students from Brunkard Lab will be presenting during the Hands-On Expos on 10/12 and 10/15. The Brunkard Lab focuses on a metabolic signaling pathway called TARGET OF RAPAMYCIN (TOR) and its role in nutrient sensing, specifically in plants.

Their booth, “The never-ending sTORy”, will teach attendees about the variety of nutrients they receive from eating various crops and how that helps them grow. Additionally, they will learn that plants and crops also need nutrients to grow and develop.

USDA ARS, Vegetable Crops Research Unit, Department of Horticulture

This exploration station hosted by the USDA ARS, Vegetable Crops Research Unit, and Department of Horticulture can be found during the Hands-On Expos on 10/12 and 10/15. Their research specializes in using wild species of vegetable crops to find important traits, such as disease resistance and nutritional content, and then developing strategies to move those traits into new vegetable varieties.

Their booth will focus on the origins of common vegetables we eat, such as potatoes, carrots, and onions, and will include a variety of vegetables and plants for attendees to look at and touch.

Department of Agronomy and Clary’s Popcorn

The Department of Agronomy and Clary’s Popcorn, a business on state street, will have a booth during Science on the Square/Madison Night Market on 10/14, where attendees can find out what puts the “pop” in popcorn. Their booth will feature story-telling, demonstrations, trivia, and, of course, popcorn taste testing.

One demonstration includes a refractometer, which is a device that uses glass to bend light. A refractometer is one of the many tools that researchers use, such as agronomy’s Team Sweet, to determine the sweetness of corn. If you’re curious about which commercial sweet corn product (fresh, frozen, canned) is the sweetest, search out this booth!

Cranberry Genetics and Genomics Lab

During the Hands-On Expo on 10/15, the Cranberry Genetics and Genomics Lab booth will focus the genetics of cranberries and how all cranberries are not all alike. Attendees will be able to participate in a DNA extraction protocol, which involves extracting DNA from cranberries and looking at the DNA in solution — additionally, they can take a small tube of DNA with them!

The booth will also feature a variety of cranberry types for attendees to look at and evaluate a mini-bog to showcase the cranberry’s growing environment.

Payseur Laboratory

Hands-On Expo on 10/12 – During this hands-on expo for school groups, lab members will play their card game created to teach students about speciation. In the game, players compete to form new species by evolving diverse barriers to reproduction.