Science Thursdays at the Museum

The Nature Research Center is open late every Thursday until 9 pm.  Science cafes, beginner science classes, special programming and much more!

July 9, 2015

  • The Chemistry of Perfume
    6:30 pm
    Open
    Fee: Parent/child pairs are $20.00 and each additional family member is $10.00.

    You’re in a room and someone walks by.  Suddenly you are awash in the scent of springtime and roses, even though it’s snowing outside.  How can that be?

July 9, 2015

  • Science Cafe: Air Quality Matters
    7:00 pm
    Open
    Fee: Free

    Air pollution is estimated to cause millions of premature deaths globally each year.  How do we know that air pollution affects human health, and how do scientists estimate global health effects?  How is air pollution changing in the US and globally?  What are the challenges and opportunities for better managing air quality in the future, considering changes in energy sources and climate change?  We will discuss these issues, considering both local and global perspectives. 

July 16, 2015

  • Game Night!
    6:00 pm
    Open
    Fee: Free

    From Ocean-o-poly, Science Bingo and Pandemic to such Throwback-Thursday favorites as Mousetrap, Operation, Clue and Candyland, it’s all about having a great time with friends and family.
    It’ll be casual and free-flowing, from 6–8:30pm every third Thursday in the Micro World iLab. No registration is required, just come join us and have fun!

July 16, 2015

  • Programming and Electronics with the Raspberry Pi
    6:30 pm
    Open
    Fee: $10/person, Friends $8/person

    A class about pies, snakes, and electricity? No, we won’t be doing any baking or snake handling, but we will make some cool animated light art with a non-edible Raspberry Pi computer and the Python programming language. Participants in this class will use the Raspberry Pi, a credit card size computer, and Python to animate an 8x8 LED light matrix. We will work together to assemble and wire the Pi and then write code to control the matrix display. This class is intended for intermediate coders with some experience using a programming language.

  • Backyard Bees
    6:30 pm
    Open
    Fee: $10 per participant. Friends of the Museum members $8.

    If you have ever dreamed of keeping honeybees or you simply find them fascinating, then this class is for you. We will explore the biology and management of a backyard hive. We’ll also learn about an interesting, low-cost approach to keeping backyard bees and where to obtain honeybees, equipment and advice.
    Registration information: Online registration *Please note our registration system is not compatible with smartphones.

July 16, 2015

  • Science Cafe: Enigmatic Pluto
    7:00 pm
    Open
    Fee: Free

    Enigmatic Pluto: New Horizons Arrives for Our First Close-Up Look

  • Member Exclusive: Scavenger Hunt Challenge
    7:00 pm
    Open
    Fee: Free, registration required.

    Sign up now to compete in the Member Exclusive, Museum-wide scavenger hunt during the Museum's Science Thursdays evening programming. The Scavenger Hunt Challenge is limited to the first 30 teams registered. 
    For one hour, family teams will roam through the Museum looking for answers to questions and performing short experiments — with the winning teams being announced at the conclusion. Prizes will be awarded to winning teams. 

July 23, 2015

  • Robot Lab
    6:30 pm
    Open
    Fee: 1 person = $10, group of 2 = $18, group of 3 = $24, group of 4 = $28. Groups may be comprised of 2, 3, or a maximum of 4 participants. Please note, robots are not for take home. You will receive plans to make your own robot at home.

July 23, 2015

  • Science Cafe: Is Solar Power the Answer?
    7:00 pm
    Open
    Fee: Free

    To prevent the most severe impacts of climate change, greenhouse gas emissions from the electric power sector must be reduced quickly by transitioning to cleaner, more efficient energy technologies, including solar power. Thanks to falling costs, government incentives and creative financing, solar power is more affordable than ever, and North Carolina has emerged as a national leader in solar. Come hear Dr.

  • RAC Lecture: Unravelling Starlight: William and Margaret Huggins and the Rise of the New Astronomy
    7:00 pm
    Open
    Fee: Free

    In November 1862, William Huggins, a retired London silk merchant and self-taught amateur astronomer, presented a paper on celestial spectroscopy to the Royal Astronomical Society. The event marked a watershed moment in the history of science.

July 30, 2015

  • Marine Vertebrates Dissection Class
    6:00 pm
    Open
    Fee: $25/person (includes all specimens and supplies needed). Children 9 - 15 must be accompanied by an adult. Adult participant, and max. of 1 child age 9 -15, can work together on one dissection kit as a team. Price is based on dissection materials.

    Participants will dissect one bony fish and one cartilaginous fish (dogfish or skate) and examine internal as well as external structures.  Comparisons will be made between the different types of fish, their structures, why they differ, and how they are classified.
    Program Instructor: Deb Bailey & Christy Flint, Coordinators of the Micro World Investigate Lab

July 30, 2015

  • Getting Started in Astronomy
    7:00 pm
    Open
    Fee: Free

    We cover the basics of getting started in Astronomy.  Targeted to adults of any age with an interest in learning more about astronomy, we will specifically address the following areas:

  • Science Cafe: A Cure for HIV?
    7:00 pm
    Open
    Fee: Free

    Join us to learn about the exciting cutting edge research being conducted at UNC to find a cure for HIV infection.  Our local medical researchers are trying to first identify and characterize reservoirs of the virus that remain in HIV-infected individuals despite highly active antiviral retroviral treatment (HAART) and secondly to develop ways to specifically target and eliminate these reservoirs. They believe that the successful elimination of latent HIV can be achieved using novel drug therapies.

August 6, 2015

  • Primitive Lighting
    6:30 pm
    Open
    Fee: $20 per participant. Friends of the Museum Members $15.

    Before electric lights, the darkness was kept at bay in creative ways.  Join us to investigate the various light sources of the past.
    Participants will make and take home beeswax candles, oil lamps, and native rush lamps.

  • Science of Soap
    6:30 pm
    Open
    Fee: $20/person or parent/child pair (includes all supplies needed). Children 9 - 15 must be accompanied by an adult. Adult participant and a maximum of 1 child age 9 -15, can work together as a team. Price is based on soap-making materials.

    What makes it possible to transform “fat” into something more aesthetically pleasing – a sweet-smelling, moisturizing soap? Join us to learn the science behind this miraculous chemical reaction.  In addition, everyone will make up their own batch of soap, which can then be taken home for curing and use.
    Program Instructors: Deb Bailey & Christy Flint, Coordinators of the Micro World Investigate Lab

August 6, 2015

  • Science Trivia!
    7:00 pm
    Open
    Fee: Free

    What’s cooler than absolute zero? Find out at Science Trivia nights at the NC Museum of Natural Sciences, where questions feature a mix of science facts, current news, pop culture and scientific discoveries. Held in the new wing's Daily Planet Cafe on the first Thursday of every month, this is a great opportunity to mingle with friends, compete for prizes and bragging rights ... and perhaps even learn something cool.
    Science Thursdays

August 13, 2015

  • Computer Programming for Beginners
    6:30 pm
    Open
    Fee: $10 per participant. Friends of the Museum members $8.

    Have you ever wondered how a computer program works? Do you want to make your own computer games and websites? Get an introduction into the exciting world of computer programming with Computer Programming for Beginners. This course is designed to introduce basic programming skills to anyone interested in programming using the free and easy-to-use development environment Microsoft Small Basic. Participants will learn how to translate English into a computer programming language and create simple graphics.

  • Insects in Your Backyard
    6:30 pm
    Open
    Fee: $10 per participant. Friends of the Museum members $8.

    All summer long you see weird and interesting insects crawling, creeping and flying around your backyard.   Wouldn’t it be great to know what these cool creatures are and how they live? Join entomologist Dr. Colin Brammer in the lab as we examine live and preserved specimens using dissecting scopes, field guides and magnifying glasses. Learn the names and life stages of common insects of the backyard and garden. Participants will receive their own bug box to continue exploring the world of insects at home.

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