Interactive Los Alamos ScienceFest Runs Sept. 5-13


Los Alamos ScienceFest has expanded to more than a full week of mind-blowing demonstrations, interactive activities, art and discussions for inquisitive minds of all ages.

The event runs Sept. 5–13 and the majority of festival activities are free and open to the public.

Festival highlights include: an appearance by former shuttle astronaut and Los Alamos National Lab employee John Phillips, drone demonstrations and giveaways, photography exhibition of early work by Berlyn Brixner, Detonography art, 3-D chalk artist, Rocket Day and Expo Day, among many others. In addition, live music concerts are 7-10 p.m., both Fridays of the festival.

“Los Alamos is a place of world changing ideas. Los Alamos ScienceFest celebrates this and explores how science lies at the heart of everything through an entertaining and engaging series of events, exhibitions and happenings,” said Suzette Fox, executive director of Los Alamos MainStreet. ScienceFest features nine days of interactive demonstrations, workshops, hands on activities and dynamic speakers to engage in thought provoking discussion and even includes a few big nights out.”

The highly anticipated RocketDay will take off 11 a.m. to 4 p.m. on Saturday, Sept. 6 in White Rock, with the launch of 220 model rockets over a period of a few hours. The event, sponsored by Los Alamos National Laboratories, National Association of Rocketry, the Kiwanis Club of Los Alamos and Boeing, includes an appearance by former shuttle astronaut John Phillips. During RocketDay, festival goers can learn more about quadcopters with drone demonstrations, and even a chance to win a drone.

The festival will culminate with the only major science festival in the state – Expo Day – 11 a.m. to 3 p.m. Saturday, Sept. 13 at Ashley Pond Park. Expo Day will feature interactive exhibitors who will provide hands on activities showcasing science, technology, engineering and math. Expo Day is designed to encourage young people to seek careers in science, technology, engineering and math.

Visitors to Los Alamos during the festival are encouraged to check out the fire hydrants along Central Avenue, where artists have marked fire hydrants with artistic renderings of various characters. The artists with the best hydrant as determined by judges for the Parade of Painted Fire Hydrants” event will be announced Sept. 13.  

Sept. 13, the Los Alamos Arts Council will host its second annual Sec Sandoval Chalk Walk, celebrating chalk drawing. This is an all ages event where squares can be “rented” by anyone for $5 to do chalk art. Prizes will be awarded to the best drawings in various categories. Registration is required and can be done online at Drawings should be completed by 12:30 p.m., Sept. 13.

Also Sept. 13, Ashley Pond Park will be transformed into a music venue during ScienceFest Lyrics and Libations. Ryan Finn Big Band will take to the stage beginning at 12:30 p.m. with his calypso/jazz style sound, followed by roots rock n’ roll music by DK and the Affordables at 2:30 p.m. and finishing off the festival at 4:30 p.m. is bluegrass band Squash Blossom Boys. Beer and wine will be sold to those 21 and older, with an ID.

A special photography exhibition of Berlyn Brixner will be on display 4-6 p.m., Sept. 12 at the Los Alamos Historical Museum. Brixner is better known as the man who headed the photography team for Trinity and helped develop the science of high speed photography. The “Early Photographs of Berlyn Brixner” exhibition documents the town of Cordova in Northern New Mexico and its famed wood carvers. Visit for hours and details.

Also ongoing during the festival, artist Evelyn Rosenberg exhibits her Detonography art metal sculptures formed by using plastic explosives – at Mesa Public Library. After months of experiments with an Israeli explosives engineer in the 1980’s, Rosenberg discovered how to create intricately designed works of art through explosive means. Rosenberg will also be on hand to talk at 7 p.m., Sept. 11 about her book detailing Detonography at the library.

The Los Alamos ScienceFest is produced by Los Alamos MainStreet in partnership with Los Alamos County and the Los Alamos Creative District. The festival is sponsored by The Santa Fe Green Chamber of Commerce, Los Alamos National Bank, Horizons Sustainable Financial Services, Positive Energy Solar, Hubble Electro-Mechanical, BMW of Santa Fe, The Education Plan, Los Alamos Medical Center, First National Santa Fe and Lumenscapes 360. More than 200 volunteers and a core team of community leaders in science, history, marketing, education and the arts, along with several panels of advisors, participate in the Festival.

For a complete list of all events during Los Alamos ScienceFest, visit