2019 Viola Award Finalist for Excellence in Community Impact (Organization)
The Flagstaff Festival of Science serves to connect and inspire the citizens of northern Arizona, particularly youth, with the wonders of science and the joy of scientific discovery. Since 1990, this organization has nurtured a strong sense of community in Flagstaff, raised awareness about how science can change and improve lives, provided opportunities to engage learners of every age in science-based discovery, and encourage young people to pursue STEM education and careers.
As the longest-running event of its kind in the Western Hemisphere, the Festival showcases the region’s rich and diverse world-class research and scientists and has become a national model, mentoring other science festivals across the country.
This free, 10-day event happens every September and includes more than 100 activities for people to participate in. The festival has come to be one of Flagstaff’s signature events each year, as envisioned in the Flagstaff 2020 document of the 1990s, appealing to young and old, scientist and amateur. It has lectures and hands-on activities as well as open houses that let residents get up close with the scientists who drive these institutions. They include the National Weather Service, Flagstaff Medical Center, the Fort Valley Experimental Station, Lowell Observatory, NAU Campus Observatory, NACET, CCC, Walnut Canyon, Meteor Crater, USGS, Sunset Crater, Wupatki, the Arboretum, MNA, Pioneer Museum and Willow Bend. Support from businesses, nonprofits and individuals makes the Flagstaff Festival of Science possible and free to all.
Its long list of impressive keynote speakers includes Moon-Walking Apollo Astronaut Alan Bean, Arctic Explorer Will Steger, Mars Mission Boss Donna Shirley, DNA Expert Paul Keim, Mountaineer Kyle Maynard and Driverless Car Expert Raj Rajkumar.
When the Flagstaff Festival of Science is over, many local scientists continue to educate students at schools and share their research with the public. Their commitment to fostering the next generation of science leaders has helped Flagstaff continue to be a leader as the first international STEM community.
The Festival of Science won a Viola Award for Outstanding Event in 2012. To find out more information about the Flagstaff Festival of Science Visit https://www.scifest.org/