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Gear Up for Wisconsin Science Week and the Wisconsin Science Festival

Tuesday, September 12, 2023

October in Wisconsin brings fall colors, football, corn mazes, and … science! The annual Wisconsin Science Festival, held from October 16-22 this year, supports events in 140+ venues in 48+ counties across the state. As proclaimed by Gov. Tony Evers and State Superintendent Dr. Jill Underly, Wisconsin Science Week is a wonderful time to connect with community experts and opportunities in your own backyard.

Science sparks curiosity, inspires innovation, and makes the world a better place. We hope you will consider hosting an event in your schools, libraries, and other community spaces! So many resources are available to help! Start with the science fest website. Your event can emphasize science, technology, engineering, arts/humanities and/or math -- the sky's the limit. What could our event look like, you ask?

How about a family science or STEM night?
Many schools across the state host events where students provide the activities. Younger students and families experience hands-on science as middle and high school students show what they know about the world.

Do you know someone engaged in science?
Many local restaurants host a science speaker, showcasing interesting science in their communities. If you don’t have a scientist in mind, the Festival partners with UW-Madison’s Badger Talks to bring the university to you. Whether you want to hear about the history of the Ice Age Trail, discuss changes in the dairy industry, or get updated on the latest groundbreaking health care research being done on campus, we can find a speaker for you! Speakers may be requested for either virtual or in-person programs.

Can libraries join in the fun?
Yes! The Festival sends out thousands of “Science in a Bag” kits to make events easy to host. Families or students can also engage in a local BioBlitz, where they help find and count the diverse species living in our great state. From the shores of Lake Michigan to the forests of the Northwoods to the soil in your backyard, Wisconsin is teeming with life.

Can’t figure out a local connection, how about a virtual field trip?
Your group can connect to another part of the state with an expert facilitator to guide you through unique geology, discovery, and biological happenings.

By encouraging exploration of our surroundings, the 2023 Wisconsin Science Festival and Science Week will once again meet people wherever they are while encouraging everyone to try something new! This year, let that include you!

Thanks to Kevin Anderson, Science Consultant in the DPI's Division of Teaching and Learning, for his help with this article.