Tag Archives: MSI

What’s On: Manchester Science Festival 2017

The family-friendly programme for this year’s Manchester Science Festival has been unveiled. The 11 day science extravaganza is packed with events, including a robot playground, family rave and a wild dinosaur experience.  

This year’s festival runs from Thursday, 19 October to Sunday, 29 October and features more than 100 events at venues across Greater Manchester including Rochdale, Oldham, Stockport and Bolton as well as the city centre.

Headlining the Manchester Science Festival at the Museum of Science and Industry, will be the blockbuster exhibition Robots which explores the quest to recreate humans in robotic form. Smaller robot fans can also explore the themed activities at the Robots Playground featuring Miro the RoboDog, Nao the dancing robot and a host of other metallic friends.

Manchester Science Festival

Credit: Numen/For Use

Also headlining the Manchester Science Festival is Tape, by award-winning artists Numen/For Use. They are transforming the 1830 Warehouse at the Museum of Science and Industry into a giant spider’s web made from sticky tape. Visitors can climb through a translucent “stretched biomorphic skin” strung above the ground and crawl along winding networks of cocooning passageways.

Other events at the Museum of Science and Industry include Scribble Bots, Human vs Machine and Lego Space Rovers. Plus two fantastic immersive smartphone adventures featuring Ada Lovelace and Hedy Lamarr, The Lost Program and Reporting For Duty.  

Further afield, visit the #CitizenScience Showcase to find out how people just like you are helping to make world-changing discoveries or experience the AquAIRium, a “dry aquarium” that brings every sound, scent and surface of the ocean to life. Puzzles, problem-solving and PlayStations: it’s all about experimental gaming at GameLab where for good measure, they’ll also take your mutt’s mugshot portrait using the latest camera technology. All three events are held at the MediaCityUK campus of the festival’s lead educational sponsor, the University of Salford.

Sing along to the A-Z of science with the Ensonglopedia of Science or discover the weird things the human voice can do at Electrifying the Voice. Music-lovers can enjoy science raps at the Hip Hop Science Stop Weekender. Experiments get excitingly explosive at Quantum of Science, while things that rain down from the sky is the subject of Meteorites and Fireballs.

Enjoy a creepie crawly boogie woogie at Big Fish Little Fish’s family rave. Encounter some Dinosaurs in the Wild and get hands on with the archives (and some Lego robots) in Science at Central.

There’s yet more hands-on fun at A Grand Exposition. A four-day celebration of the region’s diverse community of artists, makers and creative technologists, and The Science Studio. Visitors can get up close and personal with the chemicals, reactions and elements artists use in their art. The young coders of Manchester can test their hacking skills at HackManchester Junior; plus TV astronomer Mark Thompson will explore the magical properties of matter with exploding elephant’s toothpaste and vortex generating dustbins in Mark Thompson’s Spectacular Science Show.

The popular Pi: Platform for Investigation returns with daily events at the Museum of Science and Industry; featuring the real-life amazing researchers investigating subjects including flooding, dementia and killer fungi.

For more information and to see the full programme of events at the Manchester Science Festival, visit www.manchestersciencefestival.com

Things to do in Manchester: Easter 2017

I was checking my diary this morning and realised with a slight sense of panic that my son breaks up from school this Friday. Easter is a few short weeks away and between now and then I have two weeks of school holiday to fill. I do enjoy having the boy wonder at home, but now the weather is a bit better I feel we ought to get out and do stuff.

We have plans for a couple of days in Blackpool to see the sights and hopefully get on the beach, but it’s good to have a few things closer to home to do. I’ve picked out a few things to do around Manchester over the Easter 2017 holidays.

Things to do in Manchester: Easter 2017

 Whitworth Art Gallery

Last week I visited the Whitworth Art Gallery in Manchester for the first time ever. I’m slightly ashamed that in the 40 years I’ve been alive and living in Manchester I’ve never visited before. The (closing soon) Andy Warhol exhibition drew me in, but I was impressed and in awe of virtually everything I clapped eyes on.

I already knew they had an impressive and inclusive arts programme for families. When I spied the Art Hampers on my visit, I knew we’d be back to put them to the test.

Just pick up an Art Hamper, they’re free and available any time during gallery opening hours. The Art Hampers are filled with materials for you to get inspired and make, draw and build anywhere in the gallery. Let your imagination and creativity run wild, but don;t forget to return your hamper at the end of your visit.

For more information about the Art Hampers, or the other family events during Easter 2017 at the Whitworth Art Gallery, visit their website.

SHIFT / Cheshire East

SHIFT is a vibrant and interactive programme celebrating all things digital in Cheshire East. From exhibitions and workshops to talks and hands on making – SHIFT is full of inspiring and creative events for all ages and abilities. During Easter 2017, SHIFT have a range of digital activities for tech savvy families.

On Saturday 8th April at Sandbach Library learn about Interactive LED Art (BBC Micro: bit). Ideal for ages 7+. Get your LEDs flashing and learn to program the Micro:bit LED display to create interactive bitmap art that responds to movement and button presses. The possibilities are endless. Places are free but advance booking is advisable via the library: 01270 375355.

On Monday 10th April at Handforth Library, learn about Animations in Minecraft (ages 5+). Go along to combine coding, making and tech to create 8-bit animations in Minecraft using physical punchcards, powered by PatternCraft. In this free and interactive workshop you’ll learn basic computing and code, and have fun! Places are free but advance booking is advisable via the library: 01625 378272.

The Museum of Science and Industry

Experience the amazing power of steam, water and electricity at MSI, Manchester. Activities run from April 1st to April 17th. Admission to the museum is free, there may be a small charge for some activities

The Museum of Science and Industry is powering up for Easter 2017. Whether it’s the power of water, steam or electricity – experience the sights, thundering sounds and astonishing power of the museum’s machines, muscles and contraptions as they burst into life through a series of hands-on demonstrations, workshops and shows for everyone.

For more information about what’s on at MSI over Easter, visit their website.

Waterside Arts Centre

The Waterside Arts Centre in Sale have lots going on over Easter, but this show caught my eye, Mush Ado About Puffin on Saturday 29 April 2017.

Things to do in Manchester: Easter 2017

Join Open Attic as they sail the stormy seas to bring you this funny tale about a man all alone; a friendly puffin, and a whole lot of fuss over nothing. Much Ado About Puffin is about old habits, new friendships, and stepping out into the unknown! Suitable for ages 4+.

Merlin attractions in Manchester

LEGOLAND Discovery Centre, Manchester has just re-opened after a huge refurb and has a brand new LEGO Ninjago City Adventure play feature with a Ninjago Training Camp, Ninjago Build Table, Ninja Skill training, Interactive Adventure playground and a Rotating Climbing Wall, Sounds pretty awesome, especially for Ninjago fans!

At Manchester’s SEALIFE Centre, on 1st and 2nd April visit the Julia Donaldson & Axel Scheffler’s The Snail and The Whale event at SEA LIFE. Experience this beloved children’s book as you follow the story around the centre through an amazing underwater world.

Don’t forget to decorate your very own ‘Snail Rock’ with a ‘Save The Whale’ message to display at the centre and support marine wildlife conservation.

SEA LIFE Blackpool

Open Day – Helly Hansen Watersports Centre, Salford Quays

If you are interested in trying out watersports this Easter, Salford Leisure are hosting a family Open Day at the Helly Hansen Watersports Centre at Salford Quayson 16th April 2017.

The event is FREE and includes face painting, arts and crafts, a climbing wall, a bouncy castle and various stalls. Plus the Easter bunny will be paying a visit to Salford Quays and hiding eggs for a special Easter Egg Hunt.

For a small fee of £4, adults and children aged 8+ can book hour-long taster sessions in sailing, wakeboarding, windsurfing, canoeing, kayaking and stand-up paddleboarding, powerboating, polo training and so much more.

There’s something for everyone to enjoy, so bring the whole family for a fun day out. Just don’t forget your towel!
Things to do in Manchester: Easter 2017

There’s always so much to do in and around Manchester during Easter 2017. If you’ve got any suggestions please feel free to comment below. I’d love to hear what you’ve got planned!

What’s On: Christmas at Museum of Science and Industry

In the run up to Christmas our whole family is rushed off their feet with preparations, parties and visiting Father Christmas. Once the last of the leftovers have been eaten, we all want to go on long walks and do nice things in the fallow period in between Christmas and New Year, and before the boy goes back to school in January. At this time of year we like to visit the Museum of Science and Industry in Manchester and see what’s on that’s both fun and educational. 

Families visiting the Museum of Science and Industry in Manchester will be tripping the light fantastic this Christmas holiday with a special programme of fun, free events.

Events at the Museum of Science and Industry take place every day from 22 December to 8 January. The Museum is closed on Christmas Eve, Christmas Day, Boxing Day and New Year’s Day, but it’s a great place to spend a family day out over the festive period. There are some special events and demonstrations available over the Christmas break, so there’s no better time to visit.

What's On: Christmas at Museum of Science and Industry

Children making and playing with shadow puppets at the Light Fantastic exhibition

Manchester Mills 22 December 2016 – 8 January 2017

Go back in time to the working mills of 150 years ago.  Experience the deafening sounds of the mill machines. Find out what life was like for thousands of mill workers and discover how the industry changed the world.

Engine Demonstration  22 December 2016 – 8 January 2017

Behold the power of our engines! Find out how our machines powered a city and discover their role in the Industrial Revolution.

Light 22 December 2016 – 8 January 2017

Visit the museum and explore the power of light and how it can create illusions to trick our eyes and minds. Discover how magicians use light to create illusions, build your own kaleidoscope at a fabulous interactive family workshop, try your hand at making your own 3D glasses and play in a shadow theatre.

Experiment! Open daily

In the Experiment! area you can play with 25 hands-on exhibits and see science in action. Lift a MINI and find out how the power of gears can you super strength. Be mesmerised by bubbles passing through giant columns of coloured liquids to demonstrate viscosity, see how many of the city’s homes can be lit by using household waste as power, and measure your reactions against the speed of light.

There’s always so much to see at do at the Museum of Science and Industry. It’s an excellent place to visit over the Christmas break.

For more information about what’s on at the Museum of Science and Industry on their website.

An audience with Astronaut Tim Peake in Manchester

On Saturday we set off an an out of this world adventure at the Manchester Museum of Science and Industry (known locally as MSI). We were part of a small audience with astronaut Tim Peake – something the small boy was beside himself with excitement about. 

Tim was there for a very special event, a trailblazer for the Manchester Science Festival. He was there to talk about his adventures on board the International Space Station. 

Tim Peake

Aspiring astronauts hoping to follow in Tim’s footsteps were able to hear him speak about his experiences in orbit and quiz the spaceman on what life is really like on board a space station.

Tim returned from the six month long Principia mission in June this year. During the mission Tim carried out a spacewalk and ran the London Marathon in space. His mission has inspired thousands of British schoolchildren to learn more about space – the small boy and his class grew some “space seeds” at school which had been sent from the International Space Station, and for several months we keenly followed Tim’s adventures in space.

As you can imagine, the room was filled with school children excited to see their astro-hero, the interviewers did a fine job of asking him about his adventures in space, illustrated for the most part by photographs which Tim had taken.

Tim Peake

After the fascinating interview (which was live streamed if you want to watch it for yourself) the audience of children were given the chance to ask Tim questions. There were some really good questions, but the one about space toilets really stuck with me. Apparently 90% of the urine is recycled into drinking water, with the remaining 10% being bagged up and disposed of in the trash.

Tim Peake

As an adult I was incredibly excited to be in the same room as Tim Peake, but the small boy, who is just 5 years old has now met someone who is a real hero. He will remember this day for the rest of his life, and I hope he will be inspired, if not to go into space, but at least shoot for the stars. As Tim says, there’s no direct route to being an astronaut, but working hard and having fun are a big part of the journey.

The small boy had managed to bag himself a front row seat for this audience with British Astronaut Tim. You can watch a short video of our morning below –

Tim Peake’s appearance in Manchester was part of a seven-date UK tour organised by the UK Space Agency and the European Space Agency and was the trailblazer event for the Manchester Science Festival 2016.

Manchester Science Festival 2016 marks the end of the city’s year-long role as European City of Science, and runs throughout half-term from Monday 20 October – Sunday 30 October.

You can read my preview of the Manchester Science Festival here.

Tim Peake

For more information and full event listings for the Manchester Science Festival 2016 visit their website.