Sep
03
2009

Fair Science - it's everywhere!

The Minnesota State Fair is in full swing this week, and lest you think it's just a band of hucksters pandering to a bunch of yokels, you couldn't be more wrong. Science is evident all over the fair, no matter where you look. I didn't capture everything but in my short amble around the fairgrounds I came across all sorts of examples of science and science in action, as the photographs illustrate. Of course, it's just a small sample of what's out there. The fair runs through Labor Day so there's still time to get there and discover for yourself all the fun science that can be found at the Great Minnesota Get Together.

Geology: The Geological Society of Minnesota booth in the Education Building.
Geology: The Geological Society of Minnesota booth in the Education Building.Courtesy Mark Ryan

Biology and nature: The Department of Natural Resources building is a great place to experience the call of nature.
Biology and nature: The Department of Natural Resources building is a great place to experience the call of nature.Courtesy Mark Ryan

Paleontology: Dinosaur World is a new exhibit at the fair this year. Inside are skeletons, fossils, and information about dinosaurs and other prehistoric life.
Paleontology: Dinosaur World is a new exhibit at the fair this year. Inside are skeletons, fossils, and information about dinosaurs and other prehistoric life.Courtesy Mark Ryan

Population and habitat studies: Determine the time it takes a species to fill its range.
Population and habitat studies: Determine the time it takes a species to fill its range.Courtesy Mark Ryan

Winds of change: If you're into controversial ideas like climate change, head over to the Eco building where you can see new innovations in sustainability. They've got electric cars, solar cells, and other new eco-friendly stuff. It used to be called the Technology building. What's up with that?
Winds of change: If you're into controversial ideas like climate change, head over to the Eco building where you can see new innovations in sustainability. They've got electric cars, solar cells, and other new eco-friendly stuff. It used to be called the Technology building. What's up with that?Courtesy Mark Ryan

Gravitation: Fair-goers can experience the persistent tug of gravity for just three bucks.
Gravitation: Fair-goers can experience the persistent tug of gravity for just three bucks.Courtesy Mark Ryan

Food science: Sometimes experiments go awry, but it's all just part of the scientific process.
Food science: Sometimes experiments go awry, but it's all just part of the scientific process.Courtesy Mark Ryan

Evolution: Transitional fossils? Sure, there are plenty to see in museums around the world, but who needs them? Fair-goers can witness for themselves one species evolving into another.
Evolution: Transitional fossils? Sure, there are plenty to see in museums around the world, but who needs them? Fair-goers can witness for themselves one species evolving into another.Courtesy Mark Ryan

Space exploration: To boldly go where a lot of people have gone before.
Space exploration: To boldly go where a lot of people have gone before.Courtesy Mark Ryan

Electromagnetism: The wonder of it all!
Electromagnetism: The wonder of it all!Courtesy Mark Ryan

Angular momentum: P = mv. Oh boy!
Angular momentum: P = mv. Oh boy!Courtesy Mark Ryan

Orogeny: Mountain building at its finest.
Orogeny: Mountain building at its finest.Courtesy Mark Ryan

Immunology: It was reported today that 120 4-H'ers were sent home from the fair as a precaution because 4 members tested positive for the H1N1 flu virus. But assistant state health commissioner John Stine said "it is perfectly safe for people to come to the State Fair."
Immunology: It was reported today that 120 4-H'ers were sent home from the fair as a precaution because 4 members tested positive for the H1N1 flu virus. But assistant state health commissioner John Stine said "it is perfectly safe for people to come to the State Fair."Courtesy Mark Ryan

Probability: See if you can scientifically calculate if this guy's girlfriend goes home with a giant Sponge Bob Squarepants.
Probability: See if you can scientifically calculate if this guy's girlfriend goes home with a giant Sponge Bob Squarepants.Courtesy Mark Ryan

Your Comments, Thoughts, Questions, Ideas

Thor's picture
Thor says:

Another Fair science item: While I was there yesterday, I saw a couple trees banded with information that said had emerald ash borer infestation.

posted on Fri, 09/04/2009 - 8:48am
Anonymous's picture
Anonymous says:

I like food and always have but the state fair has some interesting food but it is delisious

posted on Fri, 09/04/2009 - 10:18am
Camille's picture
Camille says:

When and why did the Technology Building become the Eco Building? I understand that it now mostly deals with environment/energy-related innovations -which is great, because we need to hurry up and reduce our impact on the environment. But it makes me sad to think that there's no longer a place for supercomputers and robots at our state fair.

posted on Sun, 09/06/2009 - 3:18pm

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