Last week I finally got to visit Telus World of Science’s Dark Matters. It was my first time checking out this adult only event, I was so excited! As we walked in, I noticed it looked a lot different from when I used to work here. The atmosphere was in full celebration mode; the bar was serving up drinks beside the DJ, the lights were dim, and there were hands-on science experiments everywhere. Everyone was wandering around with big smiles and drinks in hand. With all the excitement in the air, I could not wait to explore! Keep reading for a fun Edmonton night out.
A night of science with a splash of cocktails garnished with music.
We headed for the featured exhibit hall to check out POPnology. Along the way in, we tried out some colour science. At the thermochromism table, we wrote our names in different colours then watched as everything on the paper disappeared from the heat of a hairdryer. Then like magic, he made our names appear again by freezing the paper in liquid nitrogen. Around the next corner, they had black lights on coloured test tubes. The challenge here was to combine red, yellow, and blue to create white. After, we found our way into the POPnology exhibit; a collection of blasts from the past mixed with current technology. There, we played some Donkey Kong, took our photo with the DeLorean from Back to the Future, and watched people trying out virtual reality.
Afterward, we went into the IMAX for one of the speaker series; Science in Ice Cream by Professor (Emer.) Paul Jelen from the University of Alberta. He gave a short overview of how ice cream is made, its freezing points, melting points, and why it tastes so good. For the finale, the center’s in-house scientists came out and made liquid nitrogen gin & tonic ice cream for everyone to try. Because of liquid nitrogen’s cold temperature, -197 degrees Celsius, the ice cream formed a delightfully smooth texture.
I loved that everywhere we went there were interactive booths with science experts ready to chat. Upstairs I put on gloves, safety glasses, grabbed a brush, and painted with e.coli bacteria coloured in red, blue, and green. Outside the IMAX they were making slime, in the Science Garage I made a FrankinToy keychain, and upstairs you could find out your blood type.
Our night ended with Discoveryland. Anyone that has ever been to the science center knows that only parents with children are allowed in this gallery. I was very happy to see that it was open for adults. Even when I used to work here, I had never made it inside before. The water table had all of us captivated, I safely took off and landed the plane, JC pretended to fly, and I tapped out a tune on the piano. We definitely embraced our inner child.
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It was a successful night of science and fun with friends. I will be going back for more experiments and liquid nitrogen ice cream. Dark Matter happens every few months on a Thursday night highlighting different themes.
If you want to join in on the fun, “On your Mark!” takes a look at the science of athletics and sports on May 17th