Soccer moms, take heart! Beginning on Saturday, December 6, the U.S. Department of Energy’s Fermi National Accelerator Laboratory will offer an alternative to freezing on the sidelines: Bring the kids to Fermilab’s Lederman Science Center for a day of hands-on science. It’s entertaining, it’s educational, and it’s warm!
Starting in December, the state-of-the-art Science Center will open on the first Saturday of every month, from 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. The Science Center and its staff offer opportunities for young people from the age of seven to explore the science and technology of America’s foremost particle physics laboratory. (Center staff ask that adults accompany children under 10.)
The young scientists can choose from a variety of age-appropriate activities that explore the smallest particles of matter as well as the links between the far reaches of outer space and the inner space of the protons inside the atom’s nucleus. The Center’s staff are on hand to guide activities and answer questions.
For teachers, the Science Center’s Teacher Resource Center will also be open on first Saturdays. Although it is not required, the staff recommend that teachers call in advance to arrange for appointments.
Severe cuts in funding for Fermilab’s Science Center had closed the program on weekends. However, a gift from the nonprofit Friends of Fermilab has enabled the Center to reopen for one Saturday a month.
“It was a great disappointment when we had to close the Science Center on Saturdays,” said Fermilab’s Education Program Manager Marge Bardeen, “because Saturdays are such a popular time for people to come to Fermilab. I am delighted that we can open our doors at least one Saturday a month, and I am excited to welcome kids and parents and teachers to Saturday at the Science Center.”
Fermilab’s Lederman Science Education Center will be open on Saturday, December 6. Because Fermilab will be closed on Saturday, January 3, the Science Center will open instead on Saturday, January 10. Thereafter, the Science Center will open its doors from 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. on the first Saturday of each month, unless that Saturday falls on a holiday. Then it will be open on the following Saturday.
For more information about Saturdays at the Science Center, please call 630-840-8258. For an appointment at the Teacher Resource Center, call Susan Dahl at 630-840-3094. For information about membership in Friends of Fermilab, please call Diana Smailus at 630-840-3929.
Fermilab is operated by Universities Research Association, Inc. under contract with the U.S. Department of Energy.