Late Lab2 – NI Science Festival

As the blogger name would suggest I am indeed a scientist (it wasn’t JUST a play on sex and the city I swear!). Therefore when I heard NI Science festival was coming to town I knew I would have to get in on the action! Unfortunately due to my work schedule I couldn’t make the majority of the events organised but I did make sure I was free for late lab2!

I heard great things about last years science festival especially late lab so I booked my ticket as soon as I could. Late lab2 was held in the Ulster museum which in my mind made it all the more appealing! Such a cool venue for any event, nevermind a ‘science party’.  And yes I do realise just how nerdy that sounded!

Late lab2 promised to be as good if not better than the original late lab and I was not disappointed. From start to finish there was more than enough to see and do. From live experiments, to spectacular shows, there was plenty to simply observe or get involved in. Even outside whilst waiting to enter the building we were entertained by FirePoise who performed some very talented yet very dangerous looking routines. On entry you were offered an alcoholic drink (not bad considering the ticket only cost £5), were given a glow stick, programme and a badge with a periodic table element on it. (I got N for nitrogen…this is getting nerdier by the minute!)

When I entered the main foyer of the Ulster museum I was instantly greeted by people dressed in lab coats, people with mad scientist hair and there was a very cool atmosphere. There was a DJ playing tunes you would expect to hear in a really chilled out but funky bar and the strobe lighting gave it a party vibe. Initially I wasn’t sure what to do next, I went with a friend so we had a look at the flyer and then decided to just take a walk and see what we could see. At almost every corner there were little mini experiments being demonstrated by scientists who were able to explain what they were doing and why. In fairness I found these to be more of a secondary school level but I suppose late lab wasn’t specifically aimed at people who have studied science as a degree and it was still interesting. On the next floor we noticed that the Armagh planetarium had a pop up star dome and they invited us in as they were just about to start a show so we excitedly entered the dome. We sat on the floor with the others and were treated to a very informative presentation on the constellations that are visible in the night sky. We were told that if we tweeted that we were in the star dome we could be in with a chance of winning a family pass to Armagh planetarium. Being the competition addict that I am, I of course entered. To my delight a few days later I received a tweet back to say I had been lucky enough to win and now I can’t wait to visit with my parents who have never been to the planetarium.

All in all I have to say I thoroughly enjoyed late lab2 and would definitely repurchase a ticket if it comes back next year. Late lab would be enjoyable for anyone, you definitely don’t have to be a scientist! It’s a great chance to have a look around the museum whilst being entertained along the way. Fingers crossed I get the chance to attend more events organised by NI science festival next year!

Thanks for reading,

Emz xx

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