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Not just for kids: After hours at the Arizona Science Center

The center's Science With a Twist events offer opportunities for ASU students

Rachel Sugihara, left, and Jenny Davie take part in Friday's 1920s-themed festivities at the Arizona Science Center. The monthly events are designed to engage local adults.

Rachel Sugihara, left, and Jenny Davie take part in Friday's 1920s-themed festivities at the Arizona Science Center. The monthly events are designed to engage local adults.

Held once a month just a few blocks from the Downtown Phoenix campus, events for adults at the Arizona Science Center offer access to science exhibits, a fun theme and, for some ASU students, class assignments. 

The latest Science with a Twist theme was "Speakeasy," a 1920s prohibition event that featured secret passwords, fiery science experiments, cocktail demonstrations provided by Arizona Cocktail Week bartenders and a lecture on the history of prohibition in Arizona from the Hip Historian, Marshall Shore. 

ASU graduate student Cassandra Steeno came in costume to enjoy the music with friends. She said she came out to the event because she has been swing dancing for a while and loves the science center. 

“They always have really good educational tools for kids to learn, and it’s really nice to come back as an adult,” she said.

Sari Custer, the vice president of Exhibits and Collections at the Arizona Science Center said the Science with a Twist events are a way to celebrate science and use interesting themes to make the subject matter fun and exciting for adults.

Custer also encourages ASU students, especially those interested in the sciences, to check out the center not just for the monthly events, but also for educational opportunities.

“There is something to learn every time you come,” she said. “If you are interested in exploring science further we have jobs, we have internships. There isn’t just one way to get involved.”

Madeline Santin, an interdisciplinary studies student at ASU with an emphasis in recreation management and sustainability, took advantage of the event for a night out with a friend, but also for class credit.

“My program planning class gives us credit if we go to a Downtown Phoenix event and then write a little reflection on it,” said Santin.

Santin’s professor, Eric Legg, who teaches in the ASU School of Community Resources and Development, required his students to attend a program for something they have never done before. The experience is meant to help them learn about planning an event to make new attendees feel comfortable.

“They have to go alone and just kind of get that experience of what it’s like to be a new person at a program,” he said.

Santin originally found out about the event on Facebook and said she would be interested in attending other events at the Science Center in the future.

“I totally would come to another one. It’s an extra bonus that I can write about it,” she said.

The Science with a Twist events are held monthly on the third Friday of the month at the Arizona Science Center. The themes for the events are tied to the featured exhibits for the month. One upcoming event will tie in with the launch of the new Planet Shark exhibit in February. 

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