Actually, it was the Wisconsin State Fair, but there was plenty Science where I spent the most time.
The fair lasts for a bit over a week, today there were a couple tents setup for various UW-affiliated groups to put on displays. I got to look at little bugs through a microscope, huge bugs in another display, extract DNA from some wheat germ (for any teachers reading this – it’s a super easy and interesting demo), see a stuffed badger (and learn why the it’s the UW mascot – mining), play with ferromagnetic nanoparticles, and look at some nifty 3-D printed microfluidic things.
Of course, I was there doing “outreach work” with IceCube – talking about Antarctica and physics a bit, but mostly helping kids get started with melting these big blocks of ice to simulate the drilling that was done to build the real detector:
IceCube has the whole thing pretty well figured out – they’ve been attending the fair for a few years, and the hot water drilling demo is a consistent hit. For the adults, there was a DOM on display, and some knowledgeable people were around for any tough questions that came up.
Outside the UW area, I sampled some of the fried-food-on-a-stick that the fair is so famous for; had a footlong corn dog and a deep fried snickers bar!