Geeks’ Night Out in Tempe: A big bang of free techy fun

Author: Nancy

Posted on: February 13, 2013

Details:

I’ve never aspired to be a geek. My technical abilities, at best, are just enough to get by. I pretty much avoid scary stuff like physics, chemistry, math or science in general. But, there’s an event coming up that is causing me to feel geek-like stirrings. I’m feeling confused, but curious. The source of my techno tumult is Geeks’ Night Out, which will take place on February 21, from 5-10 p.m. at the park outside Tempe City Hall.

To help spread the word about Geeks’ Night Out, members of the Tempe City Council, Phoenix Comicon, Arizona Steampunk Society, students from Tempe schools and regular folks got together to film, “Invasion of the Geeks!” an ode to ‘50s B movies. More than 40 people showed up for the filming. Mayor Mark Mitchell stars as a robot, with council members Shana Ellis, Robin Arredondo-Savage, Corey Woods and Kolby Granville playing pivotal roles. The Tempe 11 video team created this short video at no cost. Watch it at http://youtu.be/ao-Jy9kn-_I. The video is very funny. After watching it, I was totally geeked-out and ready to delve into the world of technology and science.

Geeks’ Night Out is part of The Mill Avenue District’s Third Thursdays on Mill and the Arizona SciTechFestival. From science fiction to the business of science and everything in between, Geeks’ Night Out will celebrate smarts with a bunch of fun activities. Here are just a few of the wonderfully geeky events taking place in this very short five hour time frame.

Geeks’ Night Out Costume Contest hosted by Phoenix Comicon – At 6:30 p.m. participants will have a chance to strut their stuff before the judging. Starting at the Comicon stage, Steampunk Gordon McConnell from ASU Venture Catalyst will lead the zombies, super heroes, super villains and other creatures on a walk around Tempe City Hall prior to the judging. Everyone is welcome to participate or gawk.

From the Stars and Beyond – Meet NASA reps and rock star of science, Geoff Notkin, one of the Meteorite Men from the Science Channel’s hit show. Geoff and his team travel the world searching for meteorites. He’ll bring his books, meteorites and other cool stuff that’s not of this world. He’ll be at Geeks’ Night out from 5-10 p.m. and at the Tempe Public Library at 3 p.m. NASA representatives will be on hand to talk about the amazing recent discoveries and what’s in the stars for space lovers.

Robots – The Tempe School District Robotics Clubs will bring incredible, mind-boggling robots they’ve built in class, illustrating how what once was science fiction is now designed, built and operated by high school and middle school students.

More Robots – University of Advancing Technology will bring a variety of robots made by students and a new game creation, the Ultra Sketch. The 8-foot-tall video game lets you compete with others in a series of fun games or randomly find locations within the city of Tempe for opportunities for in-person fun. Far out!

Music – A Life of Science multimedia electronic rock band from Tempe will perform their futuristic robot apocalypse-themed music. Their album trilogy includes a novel, comic books, videos, animation and more. Far out!

Video Games – Evil Controllers will have their coolest new game controllers for you to try.

R2-D2 Builders Club – Check out full size replicas of R2-D2 and other Astromech Droids Evil robots from Greathouse Lab.

ASU College of Technology Booth – Learn how to be a pilot minus the oxygen, see a demo of a student-built, giant Tesla coil and lots more.

Rio Salado College and ASU’s NanoFab and Nanotechnology Applications Career Knowledge Center (whew!) will focus on the tiniest of the sciences, nanotechnology.

For sure, when it comes to technology, I’m definitely a few bits short of a byte. I’ll never attain the ultimate geek status of the likes of Leonard, Sheldon, Howard or Rashesh. What’s so great about Geeks’ Night Out  is that you don’t have to be super geeky to have a blast.

 


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