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Wisconsin Science Festival Explores the Unexpected Statewide

Ray Cross

For many of us, scientific curiosity extends beyond human biology. It’s for those people that the Wisconsin Science Festival is an exciting date on the calendar.

The 4th annual statewide festival opens Thursday and runs through Sunday with events ranging from the art and science of video games to the science of Manhattans. Director of the Wisconsin Science Festival  Laura Heisler says the event is focused "on anyone who has any curiosity at all." 

Part of why the festival covers so many different subjects is because the events showcased are as diverse as the communities that host them. A state-wide festival gives a great advantage to each audience, whether you are visiting from Milwaukee or Green Bay.

This year's Science Festival features more than 200 events for all ages at more than 30 counties across Wisconsin.

"Science festivals tend to really take on the character of the local environment where they are, and the best ones are sort of homegrown," explains Heilser. "Our approach to having a state-wide festival is that we really just invite people to do what they want to do over the four days...each venue has its own direction and its own goals with respect to what it does in the festival." 

This year, Milwaukee plays its biggest role yet. Growing from partnering Betty Brinn Children's Museum in 2012, to Discovery World joining in 2013, this year includes UW-Milwaukee. There will be more than 40 events in the Milwaukee area over the course of the festival.

"There are both expected things when that you think maybe when you think 'science festival' or 'science fair,' but it's much more an exploration of science through every possible lens from food to sports to art to dance and everything in between," says Heisler.

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Bonnie North
Bonnie joined WUWM in March 2006 as the Arts Producer of the locally produced weekday magazine program Lake Effect.
Audrey is a producer, host and reporter for Lake Effect. She is involved with every aspect of the show — from conducting interviews, editing audio, posting web stories and mixing the show together.