DOWNEY – Downey residents raised their glasses in honor of space and science on Tuesday night as the Columbia Memorial Space Center hosted “Pub Science” at the Downey Brewing Company.
The event was the second overall and the first open to the public activity that was part of CMSC’s “City of Stem” month, which officially kicked off Monday with the invite-only Aerospace Honorary Dinner.
CMSC Program Coordinator Rick O’Connor said that City of Stem was the space center’s way of giving back to the community.
“We don’t want to be just a museum that people come to and experience inside the museum,” said O’Connor. “We really want to go out to people. We want to share science and STEM with everybody else wherever they are. We want to be as convenient as possible. We want to go to the people. We don’t want everyone to have to come here, we want to go out to everybody.”
Each event during the month long program will cater to different age groups and demographics, and will feature varying scientific topics.
CMSC partnered with Lagunitas Brewing Company for Tuesday’s festivities, which were emceed by CMSC President and Executive Director Ben Dickow.
O’Connor described the brewery as a “natural fit.”
“Adults really want to learn about science, but you know adults don’t go to class. And honestly a lot of adults don’t want to go to class,” said O’Connor. “…When we were thinking how to have events for adults that’s kinda fun, not something you bring your kids to, but still you’re gunna learn something about science, a bar or brewery is kind of a natural place that adults go to hang out and have fun.”
The event began with a beer tasting of five of Laugunitas’s brews and discussion of the science behind brewing beer.
The “main event” of the evening came with a special talk by planetary scientist Konstantin Batygin, who was one of the two men who proposed the existence of a ninth planet in our Solar System earlier this year. Batygin spoke in detail about how his and his colleague’s research, findings, and the possible future concerning the “ninth planet,” which at this time is still only a theory.
Several more events are scheduled throughout the week, with even more to come in the coming weeks.
City of Stem will continue through April. For more information, visit the Columbia Memorial Space Center’s website at columbiaspacescience.org.