We head to the Downtown Berkeley Farmers’ Market to interact with the community on the second Saturday of every month. Our displays are always different, kid-friendly, and great for people who live for science, people who are lost by science and people who wish they loved science.
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- September – What’s Going on with Recycling and Bioplastics?
- October – Science of blood
- November – Science of pigments
- July – Junk Science (as part of Berkeley Sunday Streets)
- June – Plant Fungal Diseases
- March – Chemistry of Cooking
- February – Vaccines
Vaccines are important for protecting our own health and the health of those around us. We talked about herd immunity and the irrefutable evidence of vaccine safety and efficacy. Three cheers for the brave CLEAR members who didn’t let rain deter them.
- January – The shutdown
The government shutdown is affecting scientists all over the country. We talked about how the shutdown has affected us and our colleagues and played The Price is Right on lab supplies.
Left: Fossils of Glossopteris like the one on the left helped scientists establish the theory of Pangea. Nearly identical fossils were found on continents separated by thousands of miles, suggesting that at one point, those continents were all connected.
Right: Fossil of Neuropteris, an ancient seed fern from the carboniferous period about 300 million years ago!
- December – Citrus
We revisited one of our favorite farmer’s market booths – citrus!!! We talked about the evolution of this genetically complex family and shared some info about serious diseases that are threatening our citrus.
- November: Hug a fire-fighter and take a breath of clean air – we stayed home this month due to the air pollution from the devastating Camp Fire.
- October – Paleobiology
- September – Soil microbiomes
- August – California Native Plants We partnered with the UC Botanical Gardens to show off plants native to California and explain how Indigenous Peoples used them.
- July – Fire Ecology What happens to an ecosystem when it is wiped out by fire? Which things survive, which leave forever, and which come back first? We talked about these questions and so much more.
- June – Citrus Disease and Variety We brought some cool graphics showing how limes, lemons, oranges, and everything in-between are related and talked about the common diseases causing problems in the citrus industry.
- May -Marine Biology/Oceanography Gearing up for summer, we brought some sea-related demos about how sharks float and why algae are important little plants.
- April – Astrobiology Do you know what it takes to survive in space? We talked about what makes life possible and highlighted the critters (microbes) that find a way to live in some of the worst conditions imaginable.
- March – Women in Science To celebrate Women’s History Month, we gave out books about amazing Women in Science and quizzed folks about female trailblazing scientists throughout history.
- February – Flowers For Valentine’s Day we talked all about flowers! Why they can all look so different, what they do, and why bugs and birds love them too!
- January – Future of Food We surveyed people about where they thought the future of food was headed – Meatless meats? Vertical farms? Synthetic wine? Genetic Engineering? Lot’s of great opinions and discussions that day!
- December – Food Waste The holidays are full of food! So we shared some ways to cut down on food waste and recycle food pieces you may usually throw away.
- November (At Temescal FM) – Food Security We brought some facts and demos about food security and data about how many people are struggling to find their next nutritious meal. Find a list of local food banks here for donations.
- October (At Berkeley/Telegraph FM) Fungi/Spooky Science For BASF and Halloween we brought some fun slime recipes and spooky kid-friendly demos.
- September – Plant Diseases Plants get sick, too, and it’s a real problem for home gardeners and farmer’s alike, so we centered a whole table around understanding it better.
- August – Plant-derived Medicine Most people don’t realize how many medicines come from plants, so we brought some examples and learned some more from the people that stopped by.
- July- The Millet Project Our friends at the Millet Project joined us to talk about ancient grains and great ways to increase variety in your diet.
- June – DNA We spent the day talking about the cool little stringy things that determine why we are exactly the way we are. We made DNA bracelets and showed how easy it is to extract DNA in your own kitchen. (Activity links here and here)
- April – Fermented foods From breads to beer to pickles, we didn’t let the rain stop us from talking about fermented foods and the friendly microbes that make it all possible!
- March – Seeds Our first ever market was a success on March 18! We met lots of great people and talked all about seeds.