Category: STEM/STEAM

Star Party at Caspers

A meteor streaks across the sky against

(credit: Jorge Guerrero/AFP/Getty Images)

Come for a grand tour of the universe!  Join our amateur astronomers for a guided tour of the young crescent moon and other constellations.

Learn myths and facts about the cosmos. Observe wonders of the night sky including galaxies, star clusters, and double stars.

  • When: Saturday, November 14, 2015 from 5:00 pm – 9:00 pm
  • Where: Ronald W. Caspers Wilderness Park, 33401 Ortega Hwy., San Juan Capistrano, CA 92675
  • Cost: Event is Free, parking $5.00 per vehicle

Note: held only on evenings with clear skies (good weather). Call the Park at (949) 923-2210 for weather/sky updates or additional information.

Family Night


Join Columbia Memorial Space Center for Family Night! Bring the family for night filled with games for the entire family.

You can form a team or enter alone to participate in dozens of games throughout the space center. As participants play they will continue to gain points.  As they gain more points their team will climb the leader board.

At the end of the night the top 3 players will win a prize and the top player(s) will be posted on our website/social media as the “ULTIMATE Gamer”.

Participants will play games and solve scavenger hunts and puzzles that will challenge any age. Expect super-sized games, group activates, robotic challenges and other family friendly competitions.

  • When: Saturday, November 14, from 6:00 pm – 9:00 pm
  • Where: Columbia Memorial Space Center is located at: 12400 Columbia Way, Downey, CA 90242
  • Cost: Admission is $5 per per person

Pumpkin Launch


On Saturday, November  7, 2014, Join Discovery Cube at Cal State Fullerton for the annual Pumpkin Launch event!

  • Participate in hands-on activities and challenges
  • Witness flying pumpkins launched by giant trebuchets
  • Bring a carved pumpkin for our pumpkin carving contest (must be pre-carved)
  • Enjoy food from your favorite gourmet food trucks

Bring your lawn chairs and witness history at this free event as teams compete to see who can launch a pumpkin at targets using giant trebuchets and other devices. Plus, kids can participate in hands-on activities throughout the day. Don’t miss this great family event!

Admission is FREE  – Register Now

Saturday, November 7, 2014 from 10:00 a.m. – 2:00 p.m.

Cal State Fullerton is located at 800 N. State College Blvd., Fullerton, 92831. Parking is free on Saturdays. Campus map and directions are available online.

This event gives engineering enthusiasts can watch various homemade trebuchets launch pumpkins through the air during the competition.

For a more hands-on lesson on projectiles, youngsters are invited to build their own mini catapults with Popsicle sticks and launch marshmallows. Other activities include pop-rocket building and a whiffle ball catapult station. Plus, a medieval showcase will present costumes, weapons, weaving materials and other replicated artifacts from the medieval ages.

Looking For Something To Do Today?

Looking for something to do Today? There’s so much going on, you’re gonna have to choose! Check the Calendar for details.


  • Kidvasion at locations throughout San Diego  

  • Solar Decathlon at The Great Park  

  • Spooky Science at Discovery Cube OC 

  • Pumpkin Festival at Cal Poly Pomona Farm Store 

  • Insect Fair at Cal Poly Pomona  

  • Drop In and Draw at Chuck Jones Center for Creativity 

  • Halloween Celebration in the Garden at Coastkeeper Garden 

  • Irvine Park Railroad’s Pumpkin Patch at Irvine Park Railroad  

  • Kids Club Crafts at Michaels Nationwide 

  • Tustin Art Walk at Old Town Tustin 

  • Discover Nature Family Program at Oak Canyon Nature Center 

  • FREE Crafts for Kids at Lakeshore Learning Centers  

  • Oktoberfest at Oak Canyon Nature Center  

  • Star Party at Griffith Park  

  • 7th Annual Bat Night at Tucker Wildlife Sanctuary

  • Boo at the Zoo at Santa Ana Zoo

  • Halloween Bootique at Rogers Gardens

Insect Fair


Interested in creepie crawlies? Come and see over 500,000 live and preserved exotic insects from around the world at the annual Insect Fair at Cal Poly Pomona. This showcase features thousands of live and preserved insects and other arthropods from around the world at the Bronco Student Center.

Kids (or you) can touch a millipede or a Madagascar Hissing cockroach while learning how insects impact our lives and how you can make a career as an insect expert.

Person holding a tarantula in their hand

 Some of the insects on display include:

  • Vibrant moths and butterflies from around the world.
  • Beautiful cicadas from Asia . . . many having unique wing patterns and colors. These insects are the loudest on the planet!
  • A colorful array of exotic grasshoppers and katydids. Many displayed to show patterned underwings.
  • Beetles! These are the largest, most diverse group of insects. Make sure to look closely because many displayed are small but full of color, texture, and unique patterns.

Vendors sell insect-related wares at the fair, ranging from jewelry that looks like insects or has insect parts in them, to live insects for sale, including millipedes that are easy for children to care for, spiders and scorpions. In addition, display cases, frame boxes and other supplies are for sale for insect collectors.

Hey Girl Scouts – You might to consider this event for your Bugs Badge!!!

  • When: Saturday October 17 and Sunday, October 18, 2015 from 9:00 am – 5:00 pm
  • Where: Cal Poly Pomona – Bronco Student Center, 3801 W Temple Ave, Pomona, CA 91768
  • Cost: $5 per person, $4 for students and free for kids 2 and under.

While your there – visit the Pumpkin Festival at the Farm Store at Kellogg Ranch.

Prehistoric OC


It’s time to celebrate the history and roots of Orange County at Prehistoric OC! This FREE annual family fun event that is a joint celebration of: International Archaeology Day (October 18th) and National Fossil day (October 15th).

Volcano trash can

My family and I loved attending this event last year! You’ll see an explosive Volcano demonstrations, listen to the captivating storyteller Jacque Tahuka Nunez of Journeys to the Past.

Jacque Tahuka-Nunez
Jacque Tahuka-Nunez

See Native American and natural history exhibitors, take part in a Junior Scientist Camp, demonstrations, lectures, hands-on activities, food and tons of FUN!


Kids learn what it’s like to be a paleontologist or archaeologist. Kids will be able to wear hats and decorate their own field vests. They’ll be able to “dig out” artifacts/fossils in two plastic pools filled with “sand” with Docents on hand to help identify their finds. The area will be set up like a field camp, with tents and photographs of real field localities.

Shell Necklace

Some of the Junior Scientist Camp & other activities include:

  • Make Your Own Fossil: Kids make impressions of shells in clay that will harden so they can take home a souvenir.
  • Make Your Own Shell Necklace (or bracelet): Kids will make a real shell bead necklace or bracelet.
  • Rock Art project: Kids will create their own rock art on sheets of brown paper bags with charcoal. They can be painted will watercolors. Area will be decorated with photos of real Native American rock art for inspiration.
  • Treking the Fossil Beds of Clark Park: Talk A guided walk among the geologic formations that have yielded fossils in Clark Park. Each tour will last about 40 minutes. See schedule of events.


Make sure to visit Los Coyotes Paleontology Museum as well. The Museum will host guided tours to showcase its extensive fossil collection from Orange County. This dinosaur museum features dinosaurs found in Orange County, it’s absolutely awesome!

  • When: Saturday, October 10, 2014 from 10:00 am – 3: 00 pm
  • Where: Clark Regional Park, 8800 Rosecrans Ave., Buena Park, CA 90621
  • Cost: The event is FREE, there may be activities which require a minimal fee. Parking is FREE.

JPL Open House


Back in July I told you to “Save the Date” for the NASA’s Jet Propulsion Laboratory annual Open House. It’s time – this FREE annual event takes place this weekend!!!

On Saturday & Sunday, October 10-11, 2015, visitors on a “ride” through the wonders of space. Highlights will include a life-size model of the Curiosity Mars rover; demonstrations from numerous space missions; JPL’s machine shop, where robotic spacecraft parts are built; and the Microdevices Lab, where engineers and scientists use tiny technology to revolutionize space exploration.


Be prepared, this event does get packed. It’s not unusual for up to 20,000 people per day to visit JPL during the Open House. Even with the crowds, visitors have great experiences, but be patient. Here are JPL suggestions to get the most out of your day:

  • Be sure to arrive early and be patient as there is only one entrance into JPL including a possible security check of your vehicle. Also, please note where you park.
  • Use your smartphone or tablet to try out JPL’s Open House web app to navigate the Lab. It provides real-time information on wait times at various sites, as well as directions to restrooms, food concessions, and other amenities.
  • The longest lines are usually at the Spacecraft Assembly Facility — the cleanrooms where we build spacecraft — and the Space Flight Operations Facility, where we communicate with all our missions. Keep this in mind if you want to include these sites in your visit.
  • Five movies will be shown throughout the day. The lines at these screenings can be shorter than other lines, and the movies offer a way to get off your feet in a cool place for a half hour while learning more about JPL missions.
  • Activities for young children are marked in the site listings. Do keep in mind that most experiences at JPL’s Open House are not intended for the very young.
  • Need help? Look for JPLers in bright red JPL-Caltech shirts with name tags. Information booths are also located around the Lab, as shown on the map.
  • Remember as you plan your visit that Open House ends at 4 p.m.

Vehicles entering NASA/JPL property are subject to inspection. Visitors cannot bring these items into NASA/JPL: weapons, explosives, incendiary devices, dangerous instruments, alcohol, illegal drugs, pets, all types of skates including skateboards, Segways and bicycles. No bags, backpacks or ice chests are allowed, except small purses and diaper bags. Drones are not allowed to fly over NASA/JPL under any circumstances.

JPL recommends arriving before 8:30 am to assure you get good parking. Also, be prepared for the heat. They will have water for sale but you may want to bring some from home.

  • When: Saturday, October 10 and Sunday, October 11, 2015 from 9:00 a.m – 4:00 p.m.
  • Where: JPL, click here for directions
  • Cost: FREE – No tickets or reservations required.

Follow @NASAJPL on Twitter and Instagram using the hashtag #JPLOpen. You can post photos and videos on the Facebook Open House event page at: JPL Open House Facebook page

Click here to Download the 2015 Open House Map Guide

Solar Decatholon 2015

Image courtesy of
Image courtesy of

I’m so excited this is back! Don’t miss the 2015 U.S. Department of Energy Solar Decathlon competition at the Great Park. The 2015 competition takes place over two weekends, October 8-11 and October 15-18.

The Solar Decathlon challenges collegiate teams from across the country and around the world to design, build and operate solar-powered houses that are cost-effective, energy-efficient and attractive. Visitors to this free public event will have the opportunity to tour the solar-powered houses, gather ideas to use in their own homes and learn how energy-saving features can help them save money. For the first time this year, a local team will be competing. Team Orange County consists of students from UC Irvine, Chapman University, Irvine Valley College and Saddleback College.

The Children’s activity area is adjacent to the Solar Decathlon Village and is open on weekends during the event. Families can enjoy face painting, balloon artists, inflatables and more. The children’s area is open October 10-11 and October 17-18 from 11 a.m. to 5 p.m.

  • When: Friday, Saturday & Sunday, October 8-11 & October 15-18 from 11:00 am – 7:00 pm. The Children’s activity area is open Saturday & Sunday October 10 & 11 & October 17 & 18 from 11:00 am – 5:00pm
  • Where: The Great Park, click here for Map & Directions
  • Cost: The event is Free, parking is $10

For more information, visit

Spooky Science


Are you ready to become a Mad Scientist at the Discovery Cube OC? Spooky Science is creeping into town, be prepared to see bugs, bones, x-rays, holograms and view live demonstrations with dry ice.

This spooky exhibit begin October 3 and runs through November 1, 2015. Enjoy weekend costume parties and take home goodie-bags!

Don’t miss these festive activities on the weekends:

  • Monster Mash Parade
  • Thor’s Bug Safari
  • Dr. Sue’s Traveling Insects and Arthropod Zoo
  • Rat and Mouse Club of America

Schedule of Events:

Saturday, 10/3 – Rat and Mouse Club of America (11am-3pm)

Sunday, 10/4 – Rat and Mouse Club of America (11am-3pm), Thor’s Bug Safari (12pm-1pm & 1pm-2pm)

Saturday, 10/10 – Rat and Mouse Club of America (11am-3pm)

Sunday, 10/11 – Rat and Mouse Club of America (11am-3pm), Dr. Sue’s Arthropod and Bug Zoo (11am-3pm)

Saturday, 10/17 – Rat and Mouse Club of America (11am-3pm)
OC Vector Control (9am-5pm)

Sunday, 10/18 – Rat and Mouse Club of America (11am-3pm)
Thor’s Bug Safari (12pm-1pm & 1pm-2pm), OC Vector Control (9am-5pm)

Saturday, 10/24 – Rat and Mouse Club of America (11am-3pm)

Sunday, 10/25 – Rat and Mouse Club of America (11am-3pm), Dr. Sue’s Arthropod and Bug Zoo (11am-3pm)

Saturday, 10/31 – Rat and Mouse Club of America (11am-3pm)Thor’s Bug Safari (12pm-1pm & 1pm-2pm)

Sunday, 11/1 – Rat and Mouse Club of America (11am-3pm)

Discovery Cube Orange County is located at 2500 N. Main Street,
Santa Ana, CA  92705

Check their website for admission fees & hours of operation.

Don’t Miss it!


Your mission today – go to the market stock up on some Moon Pies, dust off your lawn chairs and be ready to witness the Supermoon Lunar Eclipse on tomorrow evening. Don’t miss it, the last occurrence was over 30 years ago and it won’t happen again until 2033.

The lunar perigee can be seen in North and South America, Europe, Africa, parts of West Asia and the eastern Pacific. For those us in the Orange County area, you can start watching the night sky at 7:00 pm.. It will begin around 7:10pm and should be at its peak about 7:47 pm. The show should last about an hour and 12 minutes. The dramatic event will bring the Supermoon to a reddish, copper glow.

The awesome thing about this event is that you will be able to view it with the naked eye. We will be keeping my girls up past their bedtime for this event. If you’re looking a good spot to view this event consider viewing it from your backyard, a park or a local pier. If you want to attend an event here’s a couple to consider:

  • OC Telescope has a viewing event at the store on Sunday night from 6:00 pm till 9:00 pm for the Total Lunar Eclipse. If you name a unique not already named Lunar feature, you can win a Moon Pie, supplies limited to 24, one pie to a contestant, if you’re under 12 pronunciation does not count! OC Telescope is located at 2220 N Main St., Santa Ana, CA.
  • Griffith Observatory is hosting a FREE event. The event will include live piano music provided by Steinway & Sons and The Los Angeles Philharmonic as part of its Immortal Beethoven program. Music performed by Ray Ushikubo of the Colburn School. The event is from 6:30 pm – 9:45 pm. Griffith Observatory is located at 2800 East Observatory Road, Los Angeles, CA

Nasa will provide online viewing starting at 8:00 pm ET or check with your local park and planetarium for viewing parties. If you know of any events please share it by listing it in the comments.

Make sure to share your pictures on social media by using twitter and enter Nasa’s photo contest on their facebook page.

Wolf Corp. Robotics

Image from Columbia Memorial Space Center
Image from Columbia Memorial Space Center

Kids of all ages come to a Robotics Demonstration at Columbia Memorial Space Center by Wolf Corp. Robotics team from Walnut, California, one of the Google Lunar XPRIZE Challenge for kids Phase I Winners (2015 Moonbots) & FLL award winners including the 2015 California Cup Champion at Legoland.


Demonstration with lots of hands-on activities:

  • First Lego Leauge (FLL) robotics competition Information
  • Interact with the Meccanoid Robot
  • Activate our competition robot
  • Presentation at 11:30 am
  • Learn how to win a robot set
  • Questions & Answers

The Demonstration takes place on Saturday, September 26, 2015 at Columbia Memorial Space Center from 10:00 am – 1:00 pm., Admission is $5.00 for Adults and Children 4 years and older, Children 3 years and younger: FREE, CMSC & ASTC Members are also FREE.

Columbia Memorial Space Center is located at  12400 Columbia Way, Downey, California 90242 

Hot Wheels are Rolling into Town

Image courtesy of
Image courtesy of

As a girl I had a bigger Hot Wheels® collection then my boy cousins. I would save my money and visit my local toy shop to add to my collection. I remember sitting and staring at the collection in the glass case at “Toy Town”.  If I could, it would do the same today, only on a larger scale. This upcoming exhibit at Discovery Cube Orange County gives me, I mean…my girls a chance to play.

Hot Wheels: Race to Win comes rolling into Discovery Cube town September 19, 2015 – January 3, 2016. This new family exhibit will get you revved up with immersive activities for three generations of Hot Wheels® fans. There’s something for mom, dad, grandparents, and children! Visit this exhibit to become part of a race team working together to build and test the fastest speed machines on the planet! Here’s a peak at what you’ll see:

  • Take a behind-the-scenes look at the thrilling world of racing, including the scientific process for designing fast cars
  • Compete in the Pit Stop Challenge, by racing against the clock to change tires and refuel your race car
  • Test theories regarding the science of racing by experimenting with a six lane downhill speed track, booster power track, adjustable angles track, and timing track
  • See and learn about real race car parts, authentic artifacts, and captivating memorabilia

Discovery Cube is located at 2500 N Main St, Santa Ana, CA 92705

Click here for additional information on admission and hours or click here for a coupon.

HOT WHEELS and associated trademarks and trade dress are owned by, and used under license from, Mattel. ©2015 Mattel. All Rights Reserved.

Hot Summer Nights!

hotsummernightsLooking for some family fun on this Hot Summer Night? Try Starry Nights at Ameal Moore Nature Center in Riverside.

Tonight, August 28, 2015 from 8-10pm join in on the second Fourth Fridays event ‘Hot Summer Nights: Starry Nights in Riverside’ as they discuss the stars! The night will include crafts and activities, information about stars, and a brief evening trek up to a telescope station where we’ll be stargazing with the Riverside Astronomical Society (RAS).

Please be sure to wear comfortable walking/hiking shoes as we will be outside and remember to bring water with you!  This event is free and family friendly!

Ameal Moore Nature Center is located at 400 Central Ave, Riverside, CA 92507 (map)

Girls in STEM

Image courtesy of
Image courtesy of

Do you know a girl between the ages of 9 -18 who loves STEM? If so, bring them to the “Girls in STEM Club meeting”.

The Girls in STEM Club based at the Columbia Memorial Space Center is a new, out-of-school experience open to girls ages 9 to 18 and from all backgrounds!Through hands-on activities and challenges centered on STEM (science, technology, engineering, math) topics, girls are encouraged to create, explore, and test new ideas.

Through mentoring relationships and increased opportunities, the club equips girls to be life-long learners and advocates for the diversity of women in STEM careers.

  • When: Saturday, August 29, 2105 from 12:00pm – 2:00pm 
  • Where: Columbia Memorial Space Center, 12400 Columbia Way
    Downey, California 90242
  • Cost: FREE for girls to join!  (Parents must pay $5 admission fee if they wish to remain in the Space Center)

Contact us at with any questions or call (562) 231-1200 for more information.

Family Science Night


Join Ocean Institute this evening for Family Science Night. Spend a summer evening in the Samueli Conference Center getting “up close and personal” with local scientists. The entire family is invited to visit as they survey the stars, explore the seas, and dive into the surf zone.

Tonight’s experience will include a presentation by a guest speaker with alternate activities for kids, followed by a lab program to introduce your whole family to the fascinating world of science. A different topic will be covered each week.

ADVENTURES IN SCIENCE with Terri Hernandez. Come meet our live animal guests in this special presentation. Make the evening extra special by enjoying your own picnic dinner before the program! Picnic areas and tables are available around the Ocean Institute and at Baby Beach.

  • When: Tuesday, August 18, 2105, from 6:00 pm – 8:00 pm
  • Where: Ocean Institute, 24200 Dana Point Harbor Dr. Dana Point, CA 92629
  • Cost: $9/person ($7/Member); $27/Family-pack; ($18/Member Family-pack)

Bubble Bonanaza

Image courtesy of
Image courtesy of

I haven’t meet a kid that doesn’t love bubbles! Kidspace Museum presents Bubble Bonanza, this celebration of bubbles takes place on August 16 & 17, 2105.

Discover the answers to fun bubble questions like: can you make different shapes out of bubbles? Why can you see rainbows in bubbles? How many people fit into a giant bubble?

Guests are also invited to get creative inside a bubble laboratory and delight in an outdoor bubble “snowfall.”.

  • When: Saturday, August 15 & Sunday, August 16, 2015
  • Where: Kidspace Museum, 480 North Arroyo Blvd.
    Pasadena, CA 91103

  • Cost:  Adults & Children: $11.00, Infants (under age 1): FREE