Odell Mitchell’s 8-year-old daughter has been showing an interest in science lately, so when the Bronzeville resident heard the University of Chicago was bringing back its South Side Science Festival, he brought his daughters, his sister and his mom to check it out.
As a single dad, Mitchell says he’s always looking for engaging family-friendly activities across the city, and last Saturday’s bustling event didn’t disappoint. The festival featured more than 100 interactive science demonstrations led by 500 scientists and drew more than 4,500 attendees to UChicago’s campus.
“Getting to take things that people talk about and then have them be real has been wonderful,” Mitchell said as his two children worked with UChicago scientists and students to create suncatchers using pipettes nearby. “We were just at the immune system table, and we were talking about sneezing and masks and just watching my daughter go, ‘Oh! That makes sense!’ was great.”
Spread across the science quads on campus, the daylong festival explored the ways science impacts our daily lives, offering hands-on lessons for all ages—ranging from dancing robots and 3D printers to a butterfly lab and CPR training.
The second-annual event was co-organized by the Biological Sciences Division, Physical Sciences Division, Pritzker School of Molecular Engineering and the Office of Civic Engagement.