UW-Madison Science Alliance Updater – October 10, 2022

 UW-Madison Science Alliance Updater

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Sunday 9 October 2022

Hi Everyone,

What an autumnal display has been in play today, with yellow-clad ash trees on Adams Street forming a Golden Way. This evening the full moon is lighting up the night, and the next few days are likely to be the most colorful week of the most colorful month of the year.  Happily, it’s going to be a splendid week for the 12th annual Wisconsin Science Festival with events all over the Badger State October 10 through 16.

For those of us in 4-H, we have the happy coincidence that this week our Wisconsin colleagues are hosting at Monona Terrace the yearly conference of the National Association of Extension 4-H Youth Development Professionals.  On Monday afternoon I get to guide a group of NAE4HYDP folks on a tour of the central part of campus to show many of the places that welcome 4-H youth & adult volunteers to UW-Madison to experience science as exploring the unknown.

Both the Science Festival and the 4-H Conference will come together for me on Saturday. A group from Waukesha County 4-H/Community Youth Development will travel to campus to visit the Discovery Building, the Geology Museum, the Physics Museum, and the Biotech Center.  I hope the coming days bring similar happy confluences for you, too.

Thanks again!

Tom Zinnen

  ===Coming Up This Week and This Coming Month

1.  The UW-Madison Science Alliance meets weekly Monday meetings at 10:00 am, including October 10. Come to Room 1120 Wisconsin Energy Institute, 1552 University Ave; or tune in by Zoom.

 The Zoom link for the fall meetings of Science Alliance will continue to be: https://zoom.us/my/glbrc.weieducation.vmr?pwd=L2Q0L0g0S3lEd2gyazNscjA1d2JYZz09

The draft agenda for October 10 at 10 am includes:•  Welcome:•  Updates

•  Wisconsin Science Festival Oct 10-16 Statewide

•  Some UW-Madison Science Outreach Events seeking Presenters:

a.       Cardinal After School on Tuesdays from 4pm to 5pm

b.       Healing Labs + Science Alliance Coalition:  “Letting Off STEAM” at Goodman Madison South Branch Library, Oct 20, 5-7pm

c.       Dane County 4-H  STEAM Team’s “Science Fright Night” Thursday Oct 20, 7-8:30pm at UW Space Place

d.       River Trail School (K-8) from Milwaukee planning an Ag Day on campus in November; date yet to be determined

e.        Southern Lakes Advanced Learner Network’s “Science Immersion Day” Slated for Tuesday February 14 at UW-Madison. About 80 students, 20 teachers.  Theme:  “For the Love of Science”

f.       Mt. Horeb Intermediate Center field trips to campus for 150 third graders, Tuesdays April 4 and 11

•  Other Business

•  Next Meeting:  Monday, October 17, 10 am

As with the #Updater, the Science Alliance meeting notes are also archived on https://science.wisc.edu/science-alliance/.

 2. Recurring Programming Events Coming This Week and Soon.

•  Weekly Reminder: Please Post your science outreach events and Check for Other Science Events presented online and available to all at http://today.wisc.edu/events/tag/science

 Saturday Science Workshops at UW Space Place  every Saturday, from 10 am to 11 am.

These family-friendly events are always free and open to the public every Saturday morning during the school year. This program is held in person only at UW Space Place, 2300 S. Park St, Madison. The workshop starts promptly at 10:00 and is typically over by 11:00.

 Badger Talks Live:  Watch live and in archive at  https://www.facebook.com/BadgerTalks/live_videos/  and check the schedule at  https://badgertalks.wisc.edu/events/.  On Tuesday, October 11, noon:“Mirrors, Windows and Sliding Glass Doors: Why Diversity in Children’s Books Matters to Us All” withDipesh Navsaria, Dept of General Pediatrics and Adolescent Medicine & Dept of Human Development and Family Studies

 “PLATO  Frontiers in Life Sciences” continue its 10-week Fall Series of public talks held every Wednesday at 1pm at UW Space Place, 2300 South Park Street, Madison.  Come listen in live or zoom to the room at go.wisc.edu/27448v.  On October 12 Jeff Maddock of Curriculum & Instruction speaks on “From Stern to STEM: Toys, Discipline, and Creating “Sciency” & “Non-Sciency” Thinkers.”

 • “Wednesday Nite @ The Lab” series of public science talks every Wednesday night, 50 times a year, at 7pm CT by zoom (go.wisc.edu/240r59) or in person in Room 1111 Genetics Biotech Center.  On October 12 we have a Special Double-Header with Doug Moe at 4pm in Room 1211 Biochemical Sciences and with Sharon Tang, Amy Zaremba and Alicia Rheal at 7pm at our regular location of Room 1111 Genetics Biotech Center.


3. Energy Prices and the Inflation Reduction Act on Monday October 10 at 4:45

We’ve all been feeling the effects of higher energy prices–at the pump, on our utility bill, and in the other goods and services we buy. Even though oil prices have recently dropped, the Russian invasion of Ukraine has caused a massive upheaval to global energy markets, especially natural gas. Meanwhile, the U.S. federal government has passed the Inflation Reduction Act, which offers a large number of incentives to businesses and households to invest in energy efficiency and clean energy. Join us Monday, October 10th from 4:45–6:00 p.m. to learn about the current and future outlook for energy prices and how the Inflation Reduction Act might affect energy affordability, especially for everyday Wisconsinites.

This event is offered both in-person at the Wisconsin Energy Institute and online through Zoom Webinar. If attending online, registration is required. 

Allison Bender 

Outreach Coordinator

Wisconsin Energy Institute | Great Lakes Bioenergy Research Center



1552 University Ave, Madison WI, Room 2160

University of Wisconsin–Madison

Pronouns: she, her, hers

4.  Check Out the 2022-2023 “Family Science Nights” Opportunities: 


Researchers & Outreachers, if you’d like to help with Family Science Nights over the coming months, please sign up here.

Parents & Teachers, if you’d like help in inviting UW researchers & outreachers to participate in your Family Science event, please sign up here.

5. Dane County 4-H STEAM Team Invites Your Exploration Stations for the “Science Fright Night” Thursday, October 20 at UW Space Place 

Fire up your carbon-dioxide cauldron, break out your luciferase light-sticks, or invent a new schtick with light, sound, color, smell or touch to add some shivers to your hands-on Exploration Station.

Contact Tom Zinnen at the Biotech Center, or Lisa Curley at Dane County UW-Madison Extension 4-H to register your interest and reserve a space.  We’ll be outside in the dusk and dark, weather permitting, at 2300 S. Park Street.  Hosted by UW Space Place and the Wisconsin Science Museum, both located in lower level of The Atrium at the Village on Park, 2300 S. Park St, Madison.

6. “The Physics of Climate Change” Invites STEM Teachers to Collaborate

Are you a STEM teacher interested in incorporating climate science concepts into your curriculum but don’t know where to start? 

The Physics of Climate Change project, a collaboration between the UW–Madison Department of Physics and Wisconsin’s 4-H program sponsored by the Wisconsin Idea Collaboration Grant, has you covered! Adding climate science concepts into your curriculum this school year is made easy with an engaging activity, easy-to-use teacher materials, and in-class support from the project team.

If you are interested in having the project team join your class for a session during the 2022-23 school year, or if you’re simply interested in receiving the activity instructions, please fill out this form. Please reach out to Mallory Conlon (mallory.conlon@wisc.edu) with any questions.

7. UW Science Alliance is continuing its collaboration with the Healing Labs Consortium to present in the underserved communities throughout Madison. 

The newest opportunities have been set up in the Madison Public Library – Goodman South Madison located at 2222 S Park St, Madison, WI 53713 from 5pm – 7pm.

The idea is to have smaller science hands-on events on different dates this fall. We are looking for 3-4 science hands-on stations on each of these dates in this part of the city and to reach out to this side of Madison’s underserved communities:

•Thursday, October 20 from 5-7pm

•Thursday, November 15 from 5-7pm Cool

•Thursday, December 1 from 5-7pm

To sign up for one or more events to participate with a hands-on station or to volunteer, please contact Ana Garic (ana.garic@wisc.edu)

8. UW Arboretum Fall Events

Saturday work parties, Sunday walks, and night walksSaturday restoration work parties, 9 a.m.–12 p.m.: https://arboretum.wisc.edu/get-involved/volunteer/work-parties/See the full list of Sunday walks (nature hikes, family walks, and garden strolls), plus monthly night walks, on the Arboretum events calendar: https://arboretum.wisc.edu/visit/events/

Taking a self-guided stroll is one way to explore the Arboretum on your own terms. Some of the most popular routes include the Grady Tract Loop, the Curtis Prairie, or a five mile loop through the whole arboretum. Always remember to stay on the paths to preserve wild plants + wear appropriate shoes.  

You can also take one of the free guided nature walks offered for different skill levels and ages on a weekly basis. Most meet at the Visitor’s Center, located right in the heart of the arboretum.

  • Nature Walks — Every Sunday at 1 p.m., learn about the land, plants, and animals from local naturalists.
  • Nature Hikes — On the first and third Sundays of the month, adults are invited on these longer walks.
  • Family Nature Walks — On the second Sunday of the month, families can explore the arboretum with a guide.
  • Garden Strolls — On the fourth Sunday of the month, gently-paced strolls are offered with wheelchair-accessible routes.

And the fun doesn’t stop there. Check out the calendar for monthly night walks, seasonal birding hikes + more family-friendly events.

The arboretum is open daily from 4 a.m.-10 p.m. and is always free. 

UW Arboretum Events

See Arboretum events calendar for details and registration: https://arboretum.wisc.edu/visit/events/


– Tuesday, October 11, 7–8:30 p.m. Fall Lecture: Relationship and Connection – Community and Ecological Restoration

– Friday, October 14, 4:30–6 p.m. Class: Following W.S. Merwin – The Well-Being of Poetry in Nature ($, registration required)

– Saturday, October 15, 9 a.m.–12 p.m. Ecological Restoration Work Party: Grady Tract

– Saturday, October 15, 1–3 p.m. Garden Tour: The Colors of Fall

– Saturday, October 15, 1–3:30 p.m. Class: Reading the Landscape – Woodlands ($, registration required)

– Sunday, October 16, 1–2:30 p.m. Nature Hike

– Thursday, October 20, 7–8:30 p.m. Fall Lecture: Restoring Healthy Food Connections on Madison’s South Side

– Saturday, October 22, 9 a.m.–12 p.m. Ecological Restoration Work Party: Core Area and Curtis Prairie

– Sunday, October 23, 1–2 p.m. Garden Stroll

– Tuesday, October 25, 7–8:30 p.m. Fall Lecture: Dream of Wild Health

– Sunday, October 30, 1–3 p.m. Touring the Lost City (free, registration required)


– Saturday, November 5, 9 a.m.–12 p.m. Ecological Restoration Work Party: Wingra Oak Savanna

– Saturday, November 5, 1–3 p.m. Class: All About Owls ($, registration required)

– Saturday, November 5, 7–8:30 p.m. Full Moon Night Walk

– Sunday, November 6, 1–3 p.m. Touring the Lost City (free, registration required)

– Saturday, November 12, 9 a.m.–12 p.m. Ecological Restoration Work Party: Core Area and Curtis Prairie

– Sunday, November 13, 1–3 p.m. Nature Hike in the Grady Tract

– Sunday, November 13, 1–3 p.m. Family Nature Program: Loving Nature

– Saturday, November 19, 9 a.m.–12 p.m. Ecological Restoration Work Party: Grady Tract

– Saturday, November 19, 1–3 p.m. Class: History of the Arboretum’s Lost City ($, registration required)

– Sunday, November 20, 1–2:30 p.m. Nature Hike

– Saturday, November 26, 9 a.m.–12 p.m. Ecological Restoration Work Party: Core Area and Curtis Prairie

– Sunday, November 27, 1–2 p.m. Garden Stroll

9. Events from Madison Friends of Urban Nature


“Who’s Still Here?” Wed Oct 19 10am Senior Adventure with Naturalist Nancy Fonzen, register 608-222-3415

“Native Plant Workshop” Sat Oct 15, 10am at Starkweather Creek with Master Naturalist Jeff Steele

“Reflections and Change” Sun Oct 16, 1:30pm at Warner Park Rainbow Shelter with Lynn Persson and Eva Roos

“Fall Comings and Goings” Sat Oct 22, 10am at Edna Taylor/Aldo Leopold Nature Center with Julie Melton

“Night Isn’t Scary For All” Sat Oct 22, 1:30pm at Pheasant Branch Creek with Master Naturalist Alex Singer

“Poetry in the Preserve” Sun Oct 23, 1:30pm at Lakeshore Nature Preserve with Will Vuyk and Paul Noeldner

For more events, see https://cityofmadison.com/parks/events/bird-nature.cfm

HOW CAN I JOIN THE Friends of Urban Nature?

* Join the FUN with Friends of Urban Nature Parks and Partner Groups co-sponsored nature outings!

* Outings are FREE, healthy, welcoming, diverse and family and kid friendly

* Just show up, no registration required unless noted, rain or shine unless weather is dangerous;  no pets

* See guided outing details below and at http://CityofMadison.com/Parks/Events/Bird-Nature.cfm

* Find maps, fun facts and activities for self-guided walks at http://Tinyurl.com/MadisonFUNAdventures

* Connect with outing co-sponsor parks, environmental and friends groups for more great nature activities!