Whether you’ve always wanted to see a real brain, are curious about the science behind coffee brewing, or anything in between, there’s one event you should have marked on your calendar: the Atlanta Science Festival.

“The festival spans three weeks and includes events all over town,” says Jennifer Leavey, assistant dean for Faculty Mentoring in the College of Sciences, principal academic professional in the School of Biological Sciences, longtime festival volunteer. “It helps me recharge my science enthusiasm batteries every year and lets me approach science education creatively.”

The annual festival features over 150 science-themed events for all ages and has become an Atlanta staple over the past decade. This year, the festival will host events from March 9 to March 22, culminating in the Exploration Expo event in Piedmont Park featuring 100 different demonstrations — on March 23. 

As one of its founding partners, Georgia Tech has served a key role in the Festival for over a decade. Last year’s iteration featured several events hosted by Tech — from a science fashion show to a virtual college prep workshop — hosted by volunteers from across campus.

“As a volunteer, you could help with one of the partner events or the Exploration Expo: the culminating street party at the end of the festival,” says Leavey. “Volunteering is a great way to meet people, learn more about science, get in events for free, and share your love of science with the community.”

Here are a few ways to get involved with this year’s festival. Look out for the full schedule and attendee registration on the Atlanta Science Festival website

Volunteer for GT Science and Engineering Day | March 9

For several years, Georgia Tech has opened its doors to the Atlanta community during Science and Engineering Day. With demonstrations on everything from robotics and neuroscience to paper and chemical engineering, there’s always been an activity for everyone. Last year’s event saw over 1,500 attendees, with more than 40 host units and student organizations.

This year, Science and Engineering Day will serve as the kickoff event for the entire festival, taking place on March 9 from 10 A.M. to 2 P.M. Those interested in volunteering or hosting a demonstration of their work should register here by January 25.

Visit research.gatech.edu/ATLScienceFestival to learn more.

High School Math Day | March 9

Science and Engineering Day will also host this year’s High School Math Day, a tradition at Georgia Tech since 1958. A day of logic puzzles, math demonstrations, and friendly competition, last year’s event saw over 250 students, parents, and teachers from 42 schools around the state.

“My favorite part of High School math day is seeing all the students get excited about doing the activities with each other and winning the awards at the end of the day,” says Lea Marzo, program operations director for the College’s Center for Promoting Inclusion and Equity in the Sciences (C-PIES) and one of the co-organizers of the event.

If you know a high schooler who is a math expert or even math-curious, encourage them to stop by on March 9 from 10 A.M. to 2 P.M.

“It really is for any level of Math — whether you are in 9th grade Math or more advanced Math,” says Marzo. “There are a lot of activities planned for students and it includes food and a cool T-Shirt!”

Visit hsmd.math.gatech.edu to learn more.

Host a demonstration at the Exploration Expo | March 23

The Exploration Expo is the finale to the Festival, taking over Piedmont park every year with roughly 100 different science demonstrations. Often referred to as “Atlanta’s biggest science party,” this free event has a little something for everyone.

“Whether you’re about to start preschool or volunteering with your grandkids, you’re here because you also believe that Atlanta is a science city — that we’re here to learn, teach one another, and improve our world through shared inquiry,” shares Jess Hunt-Ralston, director of Communications for the College of Sciences at Georgia Tech, who also represents the Institute on the Science ATL Board of Directors. “And there’s nothing quite like seeing the scales of a butterfly wing for the first time, playing brain games with new friends, or peering through a telescope together to help spark and sustain that spirit of curiosity.”

Contact Jennifer Leavey (jennifer.leavey@cos.gatech.edu) for more information.

Volunteer for other events at the Festival

Interested in volunteering at the Festival in another way? Learn more about how to volunteer here.

After the Festival: Georgia Tech Energy Materials Day | March 27

If you're looking for more science after the festival, join us for the Georgia Tech Energy Materials Day on March 27 at the Georgia Tech Exhibition Hall. This event will bring together representatives from academia, government, and industry to accelerate energy materials research. It will also provide an opportunity for key stakeholders to interact with Georgia Tech researchers in this important area.

Register for the event here, or click here to learn more.