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'STEAMsational' event Saturday at Niagara Power Vista

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Thu, May 9th 2019 12:10 pm

Know a youngster interested in science and technology? Make a visit to the New York Power Authority’s free “STEAM Ahead Career Fair” on Saturday, May 11, and learn about robots, bombs, space, glowing rocks, buried artifacts, the skilled trades, computer programming and more – all at the Niagara Power Vista.

The event, scheduled from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m., will give youngsters a glimpse of careers in science, technology, engineering, arts and math (STEAM) through fun, hands-on activities, demonstrations and presentations. WNY STEM co-sponsors the event with the New York Power Authority.

NYPA’s sustainability, women in power and diversity and inclusion teams will join electrical and civil engineers to discuss a variety of NYPA programs and projects in the works.

Visiting stations include:

•“Glimpse the Stars.” Step into the Buffalo Science Museum’s Zygamunt Planetarium – a portable digital experience for all ages. Live star tour programs as well as full dome movies in 30-minute segments.

•Space, flight simulation and more. The Challenger Learning Center of Lockport teaches through space exploration and will offer a space activity, display and demonstration of robots made in its robotics lab and more.

•“Bomb Squad.” The Niagara Air Reserve Station will display the Air Force’s explosive ordnance disposal (bomb squad) capabilities to include its robotics, personal protective equipment and other tools used to safety handle harmful explosives.

•Career training. The Northland Workforce Training Center and Isaiah 61 Project will show how they prepare individuals for careers in advanced manufacturing with short-term training for full-time careers.

•Robots and drones. iDesign Solutions will show off robots, drones and other STEM education products.

•Glowing rocks touch station. Geologist Dino Zack will discuss the fluorescent rock and mineral specimens from New York state as well as world-known locations. The hands-on interactive activity will feature a display demonstrating many types of luminescence.

•Digging for artifacts. Learn what it takes to be an archeologist and look for artifacts in a demonstrative dig with Dr. Douglas J. Perrelli, director, archaeological survey, at the University at Buffalo.

•About the trades. Construction is a rapidly growing field. Build a bird house or race car with NYPA employees, members of the IBEW Local 2104.

•Forensic investigations. Take a fingerprint sample with a crime scene investigator and forensic lab chemist from the Niagara County Sheriff’s Department.

•The Newfane Circuit Stompers will demonstrate its team robot throughout the day. The Stompers are a high school FIRST Robotics Team. Students with the assistance of mentors have six weeks to build a robot. They then compete with other teams from around the world.

"We're excited to partner on this annual free event, because it brings families together with the excitement of hands-on STEAM learning and resources in the community,” said Michelle Kavanaugh, president emeritus and acting executive director of WNY STEM. “This is the best deal around for a fun-filled day at no cost."

Additional exhibitors include New York State Parks Interpretive Center, Girl Scouts of Western New York and iThimble. Lewiston Boy Scout Troop 855 will sell hot dogs, chips and drinks.

Free rides are available on the Niagara Scenic Trolley between the Power Vista and Gorge Discovery Center throughout the event. Visitors are also encouraged to explore the Niagara Power Vista – a hands-on science playground for inquisitive minds of all ages with more than 50 state-of-the-art interactive exhibits, many focusing on STEAM.

Families are invited to stop by Niagara Power Vista at the Niagara Power Project, 5777 Lewiston Road, Lewiston. Large groups or classes should call ahead to make arrangements at 716-286-6652.

For more information, visit www.nypa.gov/vc/niagara.htm.

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