St. Petersburg Science Festival and MarineQuest Return to Engage Families and Inspire a Generation on Science

Attendees at this year's festival will dive into energetic activities and experiments representing Science, Technology, Engineering, Art and Mathematics fields (STEAM).

Attendees at this year’s festival will dive into energetic activities and experiments representing Science, Technology, Engineering, Art and Mathematics fields (STEAM).

(October 11, 2018) – The St. Petersburg Science Festival and MarineQuest will offer thousands of families throughout Tampa Bay a chance to be inspired and get involved with science on Saturday, October 20, from 10am – 4pm. Scientists, environmental organizations and citizens will transform the north side of Bayboro Harbor’s waterfront into an immersive science experience under the sun. As always, the 8th St. Petersburg Science Festival and 24th MarineQuest is FREE and open to the public.

Activities will be set up at the University of South Florida St. Petersburg, Poynter Park and the Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission’s Fish and Wildlife Research Institute. The festival is a must-see event for families around the region, becoming a fixture in the community with exhibits from the U.S. Coast Guard, Pinellas County Utilities, the University of South Florida and St. Petersburg Innovation District.

“We are truly excited about the growth of the St. Petersburg Science Festival since it started seven years ago,” said E. Howard Rutherford, St. Petersburg Science Festival Co-Chair. “Our goal is to build awareness and excitement about the amazing science, technology, engineering, art and mathematics happening right here in St. Petersburg’s Innovation District and throughout the Tampa Bay area.”

Attendees will dive into energetic activities and experiments representing Science, Technology, Engineering, Arts and Mathematics fields (STEAM). Participants can explore what it’s like to be in an extreme storm at the Bay News 9 hurricane simulator, interact with virtual and augmented reality at USF St. Petersburg’s STEM INQ lab, crawl through a 20-foot-long cave to investigate Florida’s karst landscape and explore Tampa Bay’s natural environment via vessels and jet skis.

One thousand school children will be treated to a sneak peek of the St. Petersburg Science Festival during organized school trips on Friday, October 19. The growing interest in STEAM subjects and career opportunities for students and in the community was a major reason for establishing the Festival.

“The Innovation District is excited to have the Science Festival and MarineQuest back this year,” said Alison Barlow, director of St. Petersburg’s Innovation District. “This event gives community members a unique insider’s view of the world-class research happening within the District and across the region. It’s a great event for everyone – those who love science and those just curious.”

The growing interest in STEAM subjects and career opportunities for students and in the community was a major reason for establishing the festival.

The growing interest in STEAM subjects and career opportunities for students and in the community was a major reason for establishing the festival.

The joint event with MarineQuest provides visitors a larger geographic footprint with more STEAM activities and exploration for everyone. The two festivals together attract more than 20,000 attendees each year.

“The enthusiasm we see for science is why we started MarineQuest 24 years ago, and why we continue to partner with the St. Petersburg Science Festival to promote the value of science to our society,” said Gil McRae, Director of the Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission’s Fish and Wildlife Research Institute.

Along with more than a hundred hands-on activities, the festival stage features live music, shows and interactive entertainment throughout the day. Entertainers include Mad Science, Funky49, Kidding Around Yoga and more. If you get hungry, stop by one of St. Pete’s most popular food trucks and other local food vendors for a bite to eat.

Leading up to the Festival, several key public events will get the community geared up for science. October 16, a SciCafé at the Dali Museum will explore the science of brews with spirited conversations with experts. On October 18, take part in “What’s New in St. Pete Science” at Flying Boat Brewing Co., hosted by Taste of Science Tampa Bay, an annual festival in cities across the U.S. where researchers present their work to the public in cafés, bars and parks.

For more information, visit www.stpetescifest.org.

This year’s Festival sponsors include:

Platinum

  • USF St. Petersburg
  • NOAA
  • City of St. Petersburg
  • FWC
  • yourmembership.com
  • National Marine Sanctuary Foundation

Gold

  • Sodexo
  • USF College of Marine Science
  • Science Festival Alliance
  • National Science Foundation
  • Duke Energy

Silver

  • Eckerd College
  • Albert Whitted Airport Preservation Society
  • Mad Science of Greater Tampa Bay
  • Marine Exploration Center
  • USGS

Krypton

  • St. Petersburg Ocean Team
  • Pinellas County School Board

Titanium

  • Frontier Communications
  • Jessie Peter Design
  • USFSP Environmental Science & Sustainability Club

Media

  • Bay News 9
  • Tampa Bay Times
  • WEDU
  • Clear Channel Outdoor
  • SMARTS, Inc.
  • WMNF