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Questacon gets sporty for SciNight

On Friday 15 August, Questacon – The National Science and Technology will have visitors flexing both mind and muscle as its popular SciNight adults-only programme explores the science of sport.

Visitors can counter any Commonwealth Games withdrawals by battling against a robot in a game of air hockey, comparing their baseball pitch to that of a professional player, or discovering the science of power lifting.

Visitor Programmes Manager, Angie Good, said, “SciNight is a unique way to start your weekend and this event will also kick off Questacon’s National Science Week activities for 2014. We’ll have our galleries open and a fantastic programme of entertainment.

“We’re excited to have several Canberra Roller Derby League skaters participating in our collisions science show and showing off their moves in the foyer.

“We’ll also feature a performance from Canberra’s glittered strongwoman Penelope Asterisk, who will perform feats of amazing strength, some of which call for audience participation.”

Local science writer and presenter Phil Dooley will reveal the science of cheating at sports – whether by natural genetic advantage or less legitimate means.

Also on offer is the Canberra Cavalry pitching tester where visitors can compare their baseball pitch speed to that of a professional player. Foosball and vintage computer games will challenge the less athletically-inclined.

Questacon’s galleries will be open, giving visitors the chance to explore over 200 hands-on exhibits without kids.

“The physical challenges can continue in the Excite@Q exhibition where visitors can battle each other, or perhaps a robot, in a game of air hockey. Freefall will definitely get the adrenalin pumping with a six-metre vertical drop.

“Or for a more mind-bending experience, Perception Deception features a range of illusions and perception tests that will make you question whether your ‘reality’ is actually real,” said Ms Good.

DJ Alex Carder will provide the evening’s soundtrack, and Mega Bites Cafe will offer a bar and a special menu to keep visitors’ strength up.

Questacon SciNight has been running since 2012 and past themes have included music, beach party, sci-fi and food. They aim to bring an adult audience to Questacon who may not have visited before or since childhood. The SciNight events also feature Canberra artists, performers, musicians and artisan producers from a range of fields.