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Past Events

Tuesday, June 18, 2019, in Portland

SOLD OUT — The Science of Adult Attachment: Understanding our Patterns in Relationships

We all have an attachment style that impacts how we behave and feel in romantic relationships.  Though attachment styles are formed during childhood, awareness of our attachment style and tendencies can support the development of a healthy relationship through adulthood.  At this Science on Tap, Leah Haas, a mental health provider and sex educator, will discuss the origins of each attachment style and the behaviors associated with them so participants can walk away with ideas to make their romantic relationship more secure and satisfying.

Leah Haas has a Master of Social Work (MSW) and is a Clinical Social Work Associate (CSWA), providing mental health therapy on sexuality and gender related topics.  She is also a sex educator for the State of Oregon and co-founder of Beyond the Talk, an organization that supports sexual health for adults.

Event Pages:

 


*A note on the ticket price: We at Science on Tap are committed to offering educational opportunities to adults who want to learn. If the ticket price is a hardship for you, please write to us at info@viaproductions.org and we’re happy to provide reduced-price tickets to those who request them.

Wednesday, June 12 2019, in Vancouver

Fire-Bending: Coffee Roasting and its Effect on the Bean

The flames roaring, the ever-changing smells, the rhythmic sounds of the movement of the beans within the metal dragon. Inside, coffee beans are loosing water content, amino acids are catalyzing reactions with monosaccharides, oligosaccharides are undergoing caramelization, organic acids are breaking down while others are forming from the breakdown of these carbohydrates while developing pressures that can exceed 300 psi. At the end of the day, 300 volatile aromatics are transformed into over 1000. This craft, so often pictured in the artisanal idyllic is blending of science, art, and craft: bending fire to transform raw coffee into roasted beans.
In this session, Rob Hoos, author and Director of Coffee at Nossa Familia, will introduce us to the world of coffee roasting, as well as dive into some of the science that underpins and guides the profession of a coffee roaster. Looking at the process from start to finish, we will come to understand the basic design, chemistry, and thermodynamics of the process as well as dive into current research on the manipulation of flavor development during coffee roasting.

Event Pages:

 


Science on Tap at the Kiggins is produced in partnership with


**A note on the suggested cover: Science on Tap is largely supported by money collected at the door from advance and box office ticket sales. However, we are committed to offering educational opportunities to adults who want to learn. If the event still has seats available and if $10 is a hardship for you, please come anyway and donate what you can. Buying a ticket in advance confirms that you will have a seat at the event.

Wednesday, May 15, 2019, in Portland

The Lives of Bees: The Untold Story of the Honey Bee in the Wild

Humans have kept honey bees in hives for millennia, yet only in recent decades have biologists begun to investigate how these industrious insects live in the wild. The Lives of Bees is Thomas Seeley’s captivating story of what scientists are learning about the behavior, social life, and survival strategies of honey bees living outside the beekeeper’s hive—and how wild honey bees may hold the key to reversing the alarming die-off of the planet’s managed honey bee populations.

Seeley presents an entirely new approach to beekeeping—Darwinian Beekeeping—which enables honey bees to use the toolkit of survival skills their species has acquired over the past thirty million years, and to evolve solutions to the new challenges they face today. He shows beekeepers how to use the principles of natural selection to guide their practices, and he offers a new vision of how beekeeping can better align with the natural habits of honey bees.

Dr Thomas D. Seeley is the Horace White Professor in Biology at Cornell University. He is the author of Following the Wild Bees, Honeybee Democracy, and Honeybee Ecology as well as The Wisdom of the Hive.

Event Pages:

 


*A note on the ticket price: We at Science on Tap are committed to offering educational opportunities to adults who want to learn. If the ticket price is a hardship for you, please write to us at info@viaproductions.org and we’re happy to provide reduced-price tickets to those who request them.

Wednesday, May 8, 2019, in Vancouver

Sea Turtles: Mysteries of the Ocean

Sea turtles are magnificent creatures that have survived 100 million years of evolution and are critical to the health of the ocean ecosystem. Despite more than 50 years of research and recent advances in technology, scientists have only begun to understand these animals who spend the majority of their lives at sea and can travel thousands of miles every year. Human activities are threatening sea turtles with extinction through things such as habitat destruction and climate change, but scientists and concerned volunteers are helping bring them back. 
 
At this Science on Tap, Brad Nahill, President of SEE Turtles and a co-author of the Worldwide Travel Guide to Sea Turtles will talk about innovative research efforts, emerging threats to these animals, and his team’s education and conservation efforts around the world. Their efforts have helped save more than 2 million endangered hatchlings, launched a worldwide effort to end demand for tortoiseshell products, and have generated more than $1 million for conservation and coastal communities, resulting in the organization being named a finalist for the World Travel and Tou
rism Council’s Changemakers Award. Join us to learn why sea turtles are important, how people are working to save them, and ways that you can join in the efforts to protect these graceful animals. 

Event Pages:

 

 


Science on Tap at the Kiggins is produced in partnership with  

 

**A note on the suggested cover: Science on Tap is largely supported by money collected at the door from advance and box office ticket sales. However, we are committed to offering educational opportunities to adults who want to learn. If the event still has seats available and if $10 is a hardship for you, please come anyway and donate what you can. Buying a ticket in advance confirms that you will have a seat at the event.

Tuesday, April 16, 2019, in Portland

Science is Stranger than Fiction: Death and the Afterlife

Humanity’s fascination with death and the supernatural has influenced science for centuries. The desire to overcome death and understand the strange and unusual of the human condition has inspired many scientists throughout history, particularly within the fields of anatomy and medicine.

At this Science on Tap, Leslie New, PhD, assistant professor of statistics at WSU Vancouver, will take us on a tour of some of the weirdest specimens from museum collections in the western world and describe how scientists through the centuries have tried to understand death and the afterlife.

Not for the squeamish, join us for a walk through the more macabre corners of science as we celebrate Leonardo da Vinci’s 567th birthday!

Wednesday, April 3, 2019, in Portland

What is Happening This Week in Science? Find out with TWIS!

What IS happening this week in science??? It’s often hard to keep up with the pace of new discoveries. But, that’s where the This Week in Science (TWIS) podcast comes in! Prepare to laugh and learn while TWIS, the longest running, woman-run science podcast, entertains you with SCIENCE!

This Week in Science (TWIS) is a weekly web and radio talk-show presenting a humorous, often opinionated, and irreverent look at the week in science and technology. In each show, the hosts, Dr. Kiki Sanford (a neuroscientist), Justin Jackson (a car-salesman turned geneticist), and Blair Bazdarich (the zoologist), discuss the latest in cutting-edge science news on topics such as: genetic engineering, stem cells, human evolution, climate change, space exploration, neuroscience, microbiology, and show favorites – Countdown to World Robot Domination and Blair’s Animal Corner.

Feed your curiosity about the world, and join the TWIS crew for this very special LIVE broadcast from the Alberta Rose Theater where we will be joined by nerdy musical guests, The PDX Broadsides! If you enjoy music by Jonathan Coulton, Ingrid Michaelson, Magnetic Zeroes, Karen Kilgariff, The Finches, Paul and Storm, and Barenaked Ladies, you are going to love the PDX Broadsides.

It will be a night of science, music, and fun… don’t miss out!

This Science on Tap event is brought to you in partnership with Science Talk, a local organization dedicated to improving science communication and engagement.

Monday, April 1, 2019, in Portland

Music and the Aging Brain: A Discussion and Concert

Partnering with Broadway Rose Theater to bring this special Science on Tap back by popular demand!

Our brains undergo numerous changes that affect memory, motor, and sensory functions as we age. Many of these changes are amplified in diseases like Alzheimer’s and other forms of dementia. Could music limit the effects of aging and neurodegenerative diseases?

At this event, learn from Dr. Larry Sherman, a musician and Professor of Neuroscience at the Oregon Health & Science University, singer/songwriter Naomi LaViolette, and cellist Erin Ratzlaf as they explore how listening, practicing, and performing music influence the brain, and how these activities could impact brain aging and disease. They will also discuss Naomi’s work as a pianist, vocalist, arranger, and composer with Steven Goodwin, who suffers from Alzheimer’s, and the Saving His Music project, which has received prominent coverage in national and local news.

Join us and enjoy a multi-media presentation that combines live music and visuals with discussions about cutting edge science. All three presenters will be performing live music ranging from Debussy, Leonard Cohen, and the Beatles to original pieces by Ms. LaViolette and Steven Goodwin.

Thursday, March 21, 2019, in Portland

Mama’s Last Hug: Animal Emotions and What They Tell Us about Ourselves

New York Times best-selling author and primatologist Frans de Waal explores the fascinating world of animal and human emotions in his new book Mama’s Last Hug. It opens with the dramatic farewell between Mama, a dying fifty-nine-year-old chimpanzee matriarch, and biologist Jan Van Hooff. This heartfelt final meeting of two longtime friends, widely shared as a video, offers a window into how deep and instantly recognizable these bonds can be. So begins Frans de Waal’s whirlwind tour of new ideas and findings about animal emotions, based on his renowned studies of the social and emotional lives of chimpanzees, bonobos, and other primates.

At this special Science on Tap, join us for De Waal’s discussion of facial expressions, animal sentience and consciousness, Mama’s life and death, the emotional side of human politics, and the illusion of free will. Learn how he distinguishes between emotions and feelings, all the while emphasizing the continuity between our species and other species. Hear about his radical proposal that emotions are like organs: we don’t have a single organ that other animals don’t have, and the same is true for our emotions.

Frans de Waal has been named one of Time magazine’s 100 Most Influential People. The author of Are We Smart Enough to Know How Smart Animals Are?, among many other works, he is the C. H. Candler Professor in Emory University’s Psychology Department and director of the Living Links Center at the Yerkes National Primate Research Center. He lives in Atlanta, Georgia.

Wednesday, March 13, 2019, in Vancouver

The Role of Cannabis in the Opioid Crisis

In collaboration with WSU’s Brain Awareness Week!
Cannabis has been used for centuries to relieve pain, and it is a less dangerous alternative to pain-relieving opioids. Mounting evidence also suggests that cannabis could help people who are recovering from opioid dependence. Once demonized as the “gateway drug,” cannabis could actually be the “exit drug” from opioid addiction.
Adie Wilson-Poe, Ph.D. is a neuroscientist who studies the pain-relieving properties of opioids and cannabinoids, and how cannabis can diminish the negative side effects of opioids. Her long-term goal is to characterize the harm-reduction potential of cannabis in the opioid overdose epidemic. Dr. Wilson-Poe is also the co-founder of Habu Health, a consumer research group that studies the effects of adult-use cannabis.

Science on Tap at the Kiggins is produced in partnership with  Campus Sig-Horz Vancouver


 

Tuesday, February 19, 2019, in Portland

The Human Holobiont: What Fecal Transplant and other Microbial Science is Teaching Us about Being Human

Over the past several decades, we have gained immense insight into the world of the human microbiome. The observations made using techniques like Fecal Microbiota Transplant and microbial sequencing are contributing to a new paradigm of what it means to be human. We now know we are not alone in our own bodies. We have a compilation of trillions of microbes living in and on us. They are working together with our cells as a complex ecosystem, one that defines us as a holobiont. Through the lens of the human microbiome we are challenged to approach health like we do ecology. We can begin to think about how every choice we make is interfacing with this ecosystems.

 

At this Science on Tap, come get gutsy with Andrea McBeth, Naturopathic Doctor and founder of Flora Medicine.  Dr McBeth first studied Biochemistry and Biology at the University of San Diego and then worked as a research assistant in molecular biology and biomedical engineering at OHSU. Shifting her focus to naturopathic medicine in order to help people in a more tangible way, Dr McBeth graduated from NUNM to empower and advocate for us holobionts.

Wednesday, February 13, 2019, in Vancouver

Sex, Relationships, and Technology

Technology continues to change and shape the ways we live…and love. Everything from online dating and sexting, to internet-ready sex toys and real dolls; all continue to shift the rules of relationships. What can science tell us about love and lust in the age of the internet? Websites full of potential dates can be overwhelming, but can science help us make better choices? How have different technologies affected our sexuality and how we fall in love? Can a person fall in love with someone online? With a robot? How has “sex-tech” altered our view of intimacy?

At this special Valentine’s Day edition of Science on Tap, Dr. L. Kris Gowen, sexuality educator, co-founder of Beyond the Talk, a sex education consulting group, and author of Sexual Decisions: The Ultimate Teen Guide, will talk about how technology is rewriting the rules of sex and romance, and how the science of love is struggling to keep up.

 

Science on Tap at the Kiggins is produced in partnership with  Campus Sig-Horz Vancouver

 

Tuesday, January 22, 2019, in Portland

SOLD OUT – Cataclysms on the Columbia: The Great Missoula Floods

One of the greatest sets of geological events to ever have occurred in North America was the Missoula Floods. Occurring as many as 40 times during the last ice age, the floods were caused by waters released from ancient Lake Missoula that scoured the Columbia River basin, carved out the Columbia River Gorge, and swept across at least 16,000 square miles of the Pacific Northwest.

 

At this Science on Tap, Dr. Scott Burns, professor of geology and past chair of the Department of Geology at PSU, will focus on the incredible story of discovery and development of the idea of the floods by J Harlen Bretz and will discuss the effect of the floods on the landscape of the Willamette Valley and the area around us.

Wednesday, January 9, 2019, in Vancouver

SOLD OUT — As the Crow Flies: Corvid Behavior, Play, and Funerals

Crows are everywhere: they are found on nearly every continent and thrive in human dominated environments. They have influenced art and literature throughout history, and whether they inspire love or hate, they have certainly impacted the hearts and minds of the humans who share their space.

Because crows are so common, it may be easy to overlook the fact that they are very intelligent and have complex behaviors and social structures, including play, tool use, communal roosting, and being able to recognize specific humans. Kaeli Swift, PhD, studies crows and other corvids (ravens, jays, and magpies), and will introduce and explain to us the world of these fascinating birds, including, of course, crow funerals.

You can find Dr. Swift on Twitter and Instagram @corvidresearch where she talks about crows, corvids, and other wildlife and plays a weekly game called #CrowOrNo to help people learn how to correctly ID and distinguish different kinds of corvids.

Science on Tap at the Kiggins is produced in partnership with  Campus Sig-Horz Vancouver

 

Wednesday, December 12, 2018, in Vancouver

Music and the Aging Brain: A Discussion and Concert — Repeat!

Our brains undergo numerous changes that affect memory, motor, and sensory functions as we age. Many of these changes are amplified in diseases like Alzheimer’s and other forms of dementia. Could music limit the effects of aging and neurodegenerative diseases?

At this event, learn from Dr. Larry Sherman, a musician and Professor of Neuroscience at the Oregon Health & Science University, and singer/songwriter Naomi LaViolette as they explore how listening, practicing, and performing music influence the brain, and how these activities could impact brain aging and disease. They will also discuss Naomi’s work as a pianist, vocalist, arranger, and composer with Steven Goodwin, who suffers from Alzheimer’s, and the Saving His Music project, which has received prominent coverage in national and local news.

Join us and enjoy a multi-media presentation that combines live music and visuals with discussions about cutting edge science. Both Dr. Sherman and Ms. LaViolette will be performing live music ranging from Debussy, Leonard Cohen, and the Beatles to original pieces by Ms. LaViolette and Steven Goodwin.

This is a repeat of the sold-out event held at the Kiggins on July 25, 2018.

Tuesday, December 4, 2018, in Portland

Gods and Robots: Myths, Machines, and Ancient Dreams of Technology

The first robot to walk the earth was not created in the MIT Robotics Lab or for the big screen in the 1920s film Metropolis. Instead, a giant bronze robot called Talos was fabricated by Hephaestus, the Greek god of invention. More than 2,500 years ago, Greek mythology was exploring ideas about creating artificial life—and grappling with the resulting still-unresolved ethical concerns. How did ancient Greek, Roman, Indian, and Chinese myths imagine artificial life, automata, self-moving devices, and human enhancements?

Join us at this special event blending history and science! Adrienne Mayor, research scholar in classics and history of science at Stanford University, will talk about her new book, Gods and Robots. She will guide you through how ancient myths envisioned automata and androids—and how these visions relate to ancient inventions of real animated machines. She will share accounts of the earliest expressions of the timeless impulse to create artificial life and reveal how some of today’s most advanced innovations in robotics and artificial intelligence were foreshadowed in ancient myth—and how science has always been driven by imagination. Come experience mythology for the age of AI.

Mayor is the author of The Amazons: Lives and Legends of Warrior Women across the Ancient World and her work is featured on NPR and BBC, the History Channel, the New York Times, Smithsonian, and National Geographic. Mayor’s fossil legend research is featured in the National Geographic children’s book The Griffin and the Dinosaur. She is currently a Berggruen Fellow at Stanford’s Center for Advanced Study in the Behavioral Sciences.

Wednesday, November 14, 2018, in Vancouver

Einstein’s Monsters: The Life and Times of Black Holes

We think we know black holes. They’ve become a fixture of our pop cultural conception of outer space, from Star Trek to Interstellar. But the reality of black holes is just as wonderful and strange as anything a science fiction writer could dream up. Black holes are the most extreme objects in the universe, yet every galaxy harbors a black hole at its center. This profound discovery to inspires questions at the cutting edge of cosmology, such as: Which came first, the galaxy or its central black hole? What happens if you travel into a black hole?

At this Science on Tap, Dr. Chris Impey will talk about his new book Einstein’s Monsters, which presents the astonishing science of black holes and their role in understanding the history and future of our universe. Come hear an epic story of black holes, from their explosive births as dying stars to their slow deaths by evaporation, and a very human story of our drive to understand the universe, our place in it, and how it all began.

Chris Impey, PhD, is a distinguished professor in the Department of Astronomy at the University of Arizona and the critically acclaimed author of BeyondHow It Began, and How It Ends, as well as two astronomy textbooks. Books will be available for sale and signing courtesy of Vintage Books.


Science on Tap at the Kiggins is produced in partnership with  Campus Sig-Horz Vancouver


 

Monday, November 5, 2018, in Portland

Fusion: Creating a Star on Earth for Clean and Limitless Energy

Fusion is the reaction that powers the sun. If controlled thermonuclear fusion can be harnessed here on Earth, it would provide a clean, sustainable, limitless energy source for all humankind. This is a grand scientific challenge, and scientists and engineers around the world are getting closer than ever. But how do you actually create a miniature star on earth? There are two options — magnets or lasers — but which one is best?

At this Science on Tap, join us to learn about what fusion is, how we could use it, and hear two different ideas for how to make it. On the laser side, Dr. Tammy Ma, experimental plasma physicist from the Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory. On the magnet side, Dr. Arturo Dominguez, from the Science Education Department at the Princeton Plasma Physics Lab. Come learn plasma, fusion, possibilities for clean energy, and see some exciting demonstrations as well!

Tuesday, October 30, 2018, in Portland

SOLD OUT / Real-Life Monsters: Psychopathy and the Neuroscience of Morality

Why do some people live lawful lives, while others gravitate toward repeated criminal behavior? Do people choose to be moral or immoral, or is morality simply a genetically inherited function of the brain? Research suggests that psychopathy as a biological condition explained by defective neural circuits that mediate empathy, but what does that mean when neuroscience is used as evidence in criminal court? Forensic psychiatrist Dr. Octavio Choi will explore how emerging neuroscience challenges long-held assumptions underlying the basis—and punishment—of criminal behavior.

Tuesday, October 16, 2018, in Portland

Cascadia Earthquakes: Reality, Risks, and Improving Resilience

The Pacific Northwest is due for a major earthquake along the Cascadia Subduction Zone, and a magnitude 9 Cascadia earthquake and tsunami would likely produce an unprecedented catastrophe much larger than any disaster the state of Oregon has ever faced. Oregon’s resilience to earthquakes is low, thus, preparing for a catastrophic disaster to become more resilient is needed to improve personal safety and safeguard communities and businesses. At this Science on Tap, Yumei Wang, geotechnical engineer at the Oregon Department of Geology and Mineral Industries (DOGAMI), will discuss Oregon’s earthquake setting, expected impacts from a Cascadia earthquake and how Oregonians are preparing for “the really big one.”

Yumei Wang focuses on building resilience to natural hazards and earthquake risk management, including on schools, emergency response facilities and critical infrastructure. She provides support to the Chief Financial Office at the Oregon Department of Administrative Services on long range resilience planning, serves on the Board of the Cascadia Region Earthquake Workgroup, and has been an advisor to the National Earthquake Hazards Reduction Program (NEHRP), to the National Academies liquefaction committee, as well as co-led post-earthquake damage assessments on the 2011 Tohoku, Japan and 2010 Maule, Chile. Wang has been a guest on PBS NewsHour, been interviewed by The New York Times, and appeared in documentaries produced by Oregon Public Broadcast, NOVA, National Geographic, and Discovery. Wang served as a U.S. Congressional Fellow in Washington DC. She is the recipient of the 2018 Le Val Lund Award for Practicing Lifeline Risk Reduction.

Wednesday, October 10, 2018, in Vancouver

Science is Stranger than Fiction: Death and the Afterlife

Ghouls, ghosts and goblins seem a far way from science, yet humanity’s fascination with death and the supernatural has influenced research for centuries. The desire to overcome death and understand the strange and unusual of the human condition has inspired many scientists throughout history, particularly within the fields of anatomy and medicine.

At this Science on Tap, Leslie New, PhD, assistant professor of statistics at WSU Vancouver, will take us on a tour of some of the weirdest specimens from museum collections in the western world and describe how scientists through the centuries have tried to understand death and the afterlife. Not for the squeamish, join us for a walk through the more macabre corners of science…if you dare.

 


Science on Tap at the Kiggins is produced in partnership with  Campus Sig-Horz Vancouver

Tuesday, September 18, 2018, in Portland

Timefulness: How Thinking Like a Geologist Can Help Save the World

Few of us have any conception of the enormous timescales in our planet’s long history, and this narrow perspective underlies many of the environmental problems we are creating for ourselves. The passage of nine days, which is how long a drop of water typically stays in Earth’s atmosphere, is something we can easily grasp. But spans of hundreds of years—the time a molecule of carbon dioxide resides in the atmosphere—approach the limits of our comprehension. Our everyday lives are shaped by processes that vastly predate us, and our habits will in turn have consequences that will outlast us by generations.

At this Science on Tap, Marcia Bjornerud, PhD, will talk about her new book Timefulness and will present a new way of thinking about our place in time that will enable us to make decisions on multigenerational timescales. Knowing the rhythms of Earth’s deep past and conceiving of time as a geologist does can give us the perspective we need for a more sustainable future.

Dr. Bjornerud is a professor of geology and environmental studies at Lawrence University, the author of Reading the Rocks: The Autobiography of the Earth, and a contributing writer for Elements, the New Yorker’s science and technology blog.

Wednesday, September 12, 2018, in Vancouver

Ebola, Culture, and Politics

The Ebola virus causes a frightening and deadly disease most commonly found in central and west Africa, and the most effective efforts to control it combine both medical intervention and cultural understanding of the people it threatens the most. Without context, the fact that village people often flee, refuse to cooperate, and sometimes physically attack members of intervention teams seems confusing, but these local responses to epidemics are rooted both in culture and in human nature. Barry Hewlett, PhD, professor of anthropology at WSU Vancouver, was the first social scientist to be invited by the World Health Organization to work on Ebola control efforts in central Africa. At this Science on Tap, join him on an improbable journey through the heart of Africa to discover how local people view epidemics and how their knowledge and practices can help to control outbreaks. Also, learn how other countries might use the insights of anthropologists to design more effective public health campaigns around other epidemics.


Science on Tap at the Kiggins is produced in partnership with  Campus Sig-Horz Vancouver

Tuesday, August 21, 2018, in Portland

Inventive Connections: Movie Stars, Math, & Marine Mammals

Movie stars are adored by the public, but often just for their looks and talents on the silver screen. Actress Hedy Lamarr was once known as “the most beautiful woman in the world,” but was also an inventor. She and a colleague designed radio-skipping technology to help the US Navy guide torpedoes more effectively during WWII, but her invention was ignored for decades until it was revisited and used as part of the foundation for wifi, GPS, and cellphones. She and many other women have contributed to the fields of science, technology, engineering, and mathematics, but have been dismissed or deliberately forgotten by virtue of their gender. The contributions of these women play an integral role in our everyday lives and in that of scientists around the world, but their work is often forgotten.

At this Science on Tap, Leslie New, PhD, assistant professor of statistics at WSU Vancouver, will celebrate the unique life and mathematical accomplishments of Ms. Lamarr. In a satisfying twist, Dr. New will also describe how Ms. Lamarr’s work on wireless technologies, originally intended for the Navy, currently helps her study and protect marine mammals such as whales and dolphins.

Wednesday, August 8, 2018, in Vancouver

Fishing for Clues: What Zebrafish Can Tell Us About Human Skin Color

The world is a colorful place, and pigments are responsible for coloring everything in nature…from the needles of evergreen trees to your pet’s fur to the skin and eyes of your loved ones. Melanin, the black pigment found in humans, generates eye, hair and skin color, but we do not completely understand how it works. With a better understanding of the biology of melanin, is it possible to modify the amount made to protect ourselves from the sun? Can we find new treatments for pigment cell diseases such as melanoma and albinism?

At this Science on Tap, Cynthia Cooper, PhD, Associate Professor of Molecular Genetics at WSU Vancouver, will describe the complexity and beauty of pigment, the hard work it does in your skin, and how using zebrafish as a model can help us better understand how pigment develops and functions in humans.


Science on Tap at the Kiggins is produced in partnership with  Campus Sig-Horz Vancouver

Tuesday, July 31, 2018, in Portland

Aroused: The History of Hormones and How They Control Just About Everything

Metabolism, behavior, sleep, mood swings, the immune system, fighting, fleeing, puberty, and sex: these are just a few of the things our bodies control with hormones. Armed with a healthy dose of wit and curiosity, Dr. Randi Hutter Epstein takes us on a journey through the unusual history of these potent chemicals and their discovery, from the London laboratory where the concept of hormones was identified to a basement filled with jarred brains to a canine sex lab. We meet leading scientists who made life-changing discoveries about the hormone imbalances that ail us, as well as charlatans who used those discoveries to peddle false remedies. Along the way, Epstein examines the functions of hormones such as leptin, oxytocin, estrogen, and testosterone, demystifying the science of endocrinology.

A fascinating exploration of the history and science of one of medicine’s most important discoveries, Aroused: The History of Hormones and How They Control Just About Everything reveals how hormones can both push us to the edge and reel us back. Randi Hutter Epstein, M.D., M.P.H., the author of Get Me Out is an adjunct professor at Columbia University and a lecturer at Yale University. Her writing has appeared in the New York Times and the Psychology Today blog, among other publications.

Wednesday, July 25, 2018, in Vancouver

Music and the Aging Brain: A Discussion and Concert

A special second Vancouver event in July!

Our brains undergo numerous changes that affect memory, motor, and sensory functions as we age. Many of these changes are amplified in diseases like Alzheimer’s and other forms of dementia. Could music limit the effects of aging and neurodegenerative diseases?

At this event, learn from Dr. Larry Sherman, a musician and Professor of Neuroscience at the Oregon Health & Science University, and singer/songwriter Naomi LaViolette as they explore how listening, practicing, and performing music influence the brain, and how these activities could impact brain aging and disease. They will also discuss Naomi’s work as a pianist, vocalist, arranger, and composer with Steven Goodwin, who suffers from Alzheimer’s, and the Saving His Music project, which has received prominent coverage in national and local news.

Join us and enjoy a multi-media presentation that combines live music and visuals with discussions about cutting edge science. Both Dr. Sherman and Ms. LaViolette will be performing live music ranging from Debussy, Leonard Cohen, and the Beatles to original pieces by Ms. LaViolette and Steven Goodwin.

Tuesday, July 17, 2018, in Portland

Yes, I’m Really A Doctor: How Equity Eludes Women in Medicine and Science

What kind of person comes to mind when you hear the word “doctor?” If you’re given a choice in a medical emergency, would you trust the female physician as much as the male?

Studies show that many people — from patients and their families to administrators and other medical staff — show an implicit bias against female physicians and scientists, often judging them as less experienced or trustworthy. Esther Choo, MD MPH, Associate Professor of Emergency Medicine at OHSU and Founder of Equity Quotient is a nationally recognized expert in gender bias in medicine. At this Science on Tap, Dr. Choo will discuss some of the underlying reasons behind the inequities, limitations to solutions proposed to date, and next steps to creating and sustaining diverse and productive healthcare teams.

Wednesday, July 11, 2018, in Vancouver

After the Flames: The Science Behind the Eagle Creek Fire Response​

We all watched in horror as our beloved Columbia Gorge burned last year. Within days of firefighters gaining control of the Eagle Creek Fire​ ​in mid-September 2017, scientists and specialists were quickly dispatched to investigate the extent of the damage. Members of​ ​a U.S. Forest Service Burned Area Emergency Response (BAER) team explored the​ ​impacted area to assess potential​ ​threats to human health and safety, concerns for damage to property, and potential impairment to natural or cultural resources, including the likelihood of future hazards like flooding and landslides. Steven Sobieszczyk joined that team​ as a BAER trainee. At this Science on Tap, hear his story about the results of those working on the science behind the Eagle Creek Fire response.

Steve is a​ ​Hydrologist at U​.​S​ Geological Survey​. He has degrees in landslide engineering geology and geographic information systems (GIS). He began his career with a brief stint at NASA before moving out west to model landslide and seismic hazards in northern California. Steve eventually settled in Portland, OR, in 2002 and has been studying watersheds in Oregon ever since. ​His interests​ ​focus on all things dirt,​ including ​landslides, water quality, and stream ecosystems. ​In addition to doing science, Steve is a​n advocate for science communication, mentors STEM students, and doodles Pokemon on his kids’ lunch napkins.

 


Science on Tap at the Kiggins is produced in partnership with  Campus Sig-Horz Vancouver

Wednesday, June 20, 2018, in Portland

Unnatural Selection: Animal Evolution at the Hand of Man

When Charles Darwin contemplated how best to introduce his controversial new theory of evolution to the general public, he chose to compare it with the selective breeding of domesticated animals. In her new book, Unnatural Selection, marking the 150th anniversary year of Darwin’s great work on domesticated animals Variation under Domestication, author and illustrator Katrina van Grouw explains why this analogy was more appropriate than even Darwin had realised.
Artificial selection is, in fact, more than just an analogy for natural selection – it’s the perfect example of evolution in action.

Katrina van Grouw, author of The Unfeathered Bird (Princeton), inhabits that no-man’s land midway between art and science. She holds degrees in fine art and natural history illustration, and is a former curator of ornithological collections at a major national museum. She’s a self-taught scientist with a passion for evolutionary biology and its history.


*A note on the ticket price: Science on Tap is largely supported by money collected at the door from advance and box office ticket sales, and theater rental is expensive. However, we are committed to offering educational opportunities to adults who want to learn. If the ticket price is a hardship for you, please write to us at info@viaproductions.org and we’re happy to provide reduced-price tickets to those who need them.

Wednesday, June 13, 2018, in Vancouver

Gender, Sex, and Biology

At least 16 states have recently introduced legislation to restrict access to multiuser restrooms and locker rooms on the basis of sex. Many of these bills use terms like “biological sex,” “genetic sex,” and “sex as determined by anatomy and genetics existing at the time of birth.” Some of these bills also use the phrase “sex or gender,” implying that those terms are synonymous. But are biological sex and gender the same thing? Do anatomy and genetics completely determine sex and/or gender? How do biologists describe sex determination in humans and other animals? Is gender a biological term at all?

At this Science on Tap, Lisa Sardinia, PhD, JD, associate professor of biology at Pacific University will approach the biological basis of sexual reproduction from a scientific perspective. She will describe the mechanisms of sex determination in humans, how those processes relate to the terms “sex” and “gender,” and how things are not quite as simple as they might seem.

Thursday, June 7, 2018, in Portland

Cause and Effect: Racism, Poverty, and Public Health

The lives of many Americans are shaped by living with long-term trauma brought on by discrimination and poverty. Chronic exposure to adverse life events such as racism or racialization, gender-based prejudice, fewer opportunities for education and employment, high rates of incarceration, and systemic inequity have tangible health effects on both individuals and communities. Although uniquely complicated, science can help navigate the scope of the mechanisms and their real world impact, and hopefully help us engage the issue to redress the harm.

At this Science on Tap, epidemiologist Dr. Frank A. Franklin, PhD, JD, MPH, Director of the Community Epidemiology Services at the Multnomah County Health Department, will explore the intersection of inequality and public health and the search for how to improve the well-being of vulnerable populations.

Tuesday, May 15, 2018, in Portland

Autism, Neuroeducation, and Inclusion in Complex Society

The awareness of autism has exploded in our cultural consciousness in the past decade, and more and more individuals are being identified on the autism spectrum. But what exactly is autism, and why is it sometimes challenging for people on the spectrum to get along in the “regular” world? How does a person with an atypical brain process things and how can science help people with autism succeed in day-to-day life?

Neuroeducation methods of teaching — a combination of neuroscience, cognitive psychology, and language — have shown tremendous progress in helping prepare students and adults with autism to successfully integrate into our complex society. At this Science on Tap, Dr. Ellyn Arwood and Chris Merideth from the University of Portland will examine the most current scientific research about autism and explore how these findings can be used by parents, educators, and adults to promote long-lasting brain growth and social development in children and adults on the autism spectrum.

Dr. Arwood and Mr. Merideth will have copies of their book Neuro-Education: A Translation from Theory to Practice for sale at the event.

Wednesday, May 9, 2018, in Vancouver

Going Out Green: The Mortuary Science of Green Burial

Despite amazing advances in medical science and technology, the mortality rate for human beings stands at a whopping 100 percent. It’s a fact: All of us are going to die someday. Basic science has concluded that contemporary after-death procedures—embalming with noxious chemicals and outdated burial in upmarket caskets—aren’t too nature-friendly. These choices are ecologically damaging, and their lack of environment-positivity have triggered many in the funeral profession to change their ways.

At this Science on Tap, Eco-Mortician Elizabeth Fournier presents a reverent look at the mortuary science of green burial by reshaping the narrative around what we consider traditional burial practices.

Elizabeth Fournier owns and operates Cornerstone Funeral Services in Boring, Oregon, where she is affectionately known as the Green Reaper for her green burial advocacy. She serves on the Advisory Board for the Green Burial Council, the environmental certification organization setting the standard for green burial in North America. She is also the author of The Green Burial Guidebook: Everything You Need to Plan an Affordable, Environmentally Friendly Burial. Copies of her book will be available for purchase.
 


Science on Tap at the Kiggins is produced in partnership with  Campus Sig-Horz Vancouver

Tuesday, May 3, 2018, in Portland

Music and the Aging Brain: A Discussion and Concert

Our brains undergo numerous changes that affect memory, motor, and sensory functions as we age. Many of these changes are amplified in diseases like Alzheimer’s and other forms of dementia. Could music limit the effects of aging and neurodegenerative diseases? Join Dr. Larry Sherman, a musician and Professor of Neuroscience at the Oregon Health & Science University, and singer/songwriter Naomi LaViolette as they explore how listening, practicing, and performing music influence the brain, and how these activities could impact brain aging and disease. They will also discuss Naomi’s work as a pianist, vocalist, arranger, and composer with Steven Goodwin, who suffers from Alzheimer’s, and the Saving His Music project, which has received prominent coverage in national and local news.

SPECIAL NOTE: There will be 1.75 Clinical CEUs available for this event through the National Association of Social Workers. A separate CEU registration/purchase is required in addition to the event ticket. Visit the NASW site for more information.

This event will be distinct from The Neuroscience of Music by Dr. Sherman on February 28, 2018, with a greater focus on how our brains age and how they are affected by dementias and Alzheimer’s Disease. Both Dr. Sherman and Ms. LaViolette will be performing live music ranging from Debussy, Leonard Cohen, and the Beatles to original pieces by Ms. LaViolette and Steven Goodwin.

Tuesday, April 24, 2018, in Portland

SOLD OUT! The Criminal Brain: The Neuroscience of Psychopathy

Why do some people live lawful lives, while others gravitate toward repeated criminal behavior? Do people choose to be moral or immoral, or is morality simply a genetically inherited function of the brain? Research suggests that psychopathy as a biological condition explained by defective neural circuits that mediate empathy, but what does that mean when neuroscience is used as evidence in criminal court? Forensic psychiatrist Dr. Octavio Choi will explore how emerging neuroscience challenges long-held assumptions underlying the basis—and punishment—of criminal behavior.

Wednesday, April 18, 2018, in Portland

After the Flames: The Science Behind the Eagle Creek Fire Response​

We all watched in horror as our beloved Columbia Gorge burned last year. Within days of firefighters gaining control of the Eagle Creek Fire​ ​in mid-September 2017, scientists and specialists were quickly dispatched to investigate the extent of the damage. Members of​ ​a U.S. Forest Service Burned Area Emergency Response (BAER) team explored the​ ​impacted area to assess potential​ ​threats to human health and safety, concerns for damage to property, and potential impairment to natural or cultural resources, including the likelihood of future hazards like flooding and landslides. Steven Sobieszczyk joined that team​ as a BAER trainee. At this Science on Tap, hear his story about the results of those working on the science behind the Eagle Creek Fire response.

Steve is a​ ​Hydrologist at U​.​S​ Geological Survey​. He has degrees in landslide engineering geology and geographic information systems (GIS). He began his career with a brief stint at NASA before moving out west to model landslide and seismic hazards in northern California. Steve eventually settled in Portland, OR, in 2002 and has been studying watersheds in Oregon ever since. ​His interests​ ​focus on all things dirt,​ including ​landslides, water quality, and stream ecosystems. ​In addition to doing science, Steve is a​n advocate for science communication, mentors STEM students, and doodles Pokemon on his kids’ lunch napkins.

Wednesday, April 11, 2018, in Vancouver

The Mystique of Terroir: Geology and Wine

ter·roir/tɛrˈwɑr;
noun
Definition: the environmental conditions, especially soil and climate, in which grapes are grown and that give a wine its unique flavor and aroma.

The Willamette Valley has a certain je ne sais quoi, no? What special quality of the region’s terroir yields such exceptional wines? How do the soil, climate, and conditions lend themselves to lovely Pinot Noirs, but not Cabernets or Merlots? How does the region’s geologic past affect where and how to grow grapes? How do Washington and Oregon compare to other wine-growing regions in the United States and other countries around the world? Join us as Dr. Scott Burns, professor of geology and past chair of the Department of Geology at PSU, and wine enthusiast, tells us about all this and more about what makes a vineyard successful.

This event is in collaboration with the showing of the film Back to Burgundy at the Kiggins Theatre staring on April 13. Buy your movie tickets at Science on Tap or show your SoT ticket at the box office and pay just $7!

Science on Tap at the Kiggins is produced in partnership with  Campus Sig-Horz Vancouver

Monday, March 19, 2018, in Portland

The Nature Fix: Why Nature Makes Us Happier, Healthier, and More Creative

In an era when humans spend much of their time indoors staring at the dim glow of a screen, many of us have forgotten the simple pleasure of a stroll through a wooded glen, a hike up a secluded mountain path, or a nap in the grass. Many of us have lost this connection and essentially forgotten about nature’s potential for reinvigoration, self-reinvention, and basic well-being. What if something serious is missing from our lives? What if an occasional trip to the neighborhood park isn’t enough? What if we’ve turned our backs on something that isn’t merely pleasant and enjoyable, but is in fact vital to our happiness, our capacity to learn, and even our survival? And if the latest science shows that nature is necessary, how do we recapture it? At this Science on Tap, journalist and science writer Florence Williams will take us on an intriguing and provocative investigation into our most basic and primal needs with a discussion of her new book, The Nature Fix. In it, she visits parks in Helsinki and forests in Korea, and she studies the brainwaves of urban pedestrians in Edinburgh and examines the healing effects of river-rafting in the American West on veterans afflicted with PTSD. Nature, she finds, is a surprising, key ingredient to civilization.

Williams is a journalist and contributing editor to Outside magazine. Her work has appeared in the New York Times, the New York Times Magazine, and National Geographic among others. Her first book, Breasts: A Natural and Unnatural History, was a New York Times Notable Book of 2012 and the winner of the Los Angeles Times Book Prize in Science and Technology.

Wednesday, March 14, 2018, in Vancouver

How Does That Make You Feel? The Science of Human Emotions

Emotions are an intimate, inescapable part of our daily lives and yet they can often seem confusing or mysterious. Across history, religious leaders, philosophers, and scientists of the human mind have depicted emotions as unpredictable, dangerous, to be avoided or at least controlled. But does human emotion really deserve such a bad rap?

Dr. Sara Waters, assistant professor of human development at Washington State University Vancouver will explore the science of what our emotions really are, where they come from, and whether they are truly a help or a hindrance. She will talk about how we can manage our own emotional experiences and the importance of emotions in social interactions and close relationships.

Wednesday, February 28, 2018, in Portland

The Neuroscience of Music

Music not only soothes the soul, but it can enhance the brain as well. At this Science on Tap, explore the origins of music, why humans enjoy making and listening to music, and how the brain behaves when we create music. Also, learn how music practice might improve brain development and prevent or limit the effects of aging and brain injury.

In this multi-media presentation, Dr. Larry Sherman, an OHSU neuroscientist and accomplished pianist who studies normal brain development and neurodegenerative diseases, will combine musical performance, thought-provoking data, and lively discussion.

This event is being offered in partnership with the Science Talk annual conference being held on March 1-2, 2018. If you are registered for the conference, please contact info@viaproductions.org for information on special ticketing.

Tuesday, February 20, 2018, in Vancouver

Close Encounters with Humankind: A Paleoanthropologist Investigates Our Evolving Species

Are we cannibals? How did we become meat eaters? Who were our first Hominin ancestors? Why is childbirth so dangerous for mothers? Is altruism written in our DNA? Are humans still evolving?

Such questions get at the heart of what it means to be human. To answer them, one must open a dialogue between modern humankind and the world of our ancestors. At this special bonus Science on Tap, Sang-Hee Lee, PhD, Korea’s first paleoanthropologist and a professor at the University of California—Riverside, will talk about her new book Close Encounters with Humankind that asks fundamental questions about evolution and the human experience. The stories illuminate a core truth about the human race: that our journey is not a straight line but rather a curvy, winding river. Whether discussing the mysteries of the Denisovans, early hominins from Asia and Siberian Russia, or the fossil evidence of monster-sized apes, Sang-Hang Lee invites the reader to join her on a spirited journey, tracking the often strange and always fascinating origins of humanity.

Wednesday, February 14, 2018, in Vancouver

The Neuroscience of Pleasure and Love

Is the brain chemistry behind our love for chocolate equivalent to that which drives infatuation with a new lover, the love of a particular song, or addiction? How does the brain sort out pleasure and discomfort? What drives our decisions to stay with one person for life or go from one lover to another, never settling down?

At this special Valentine’s Day event, Dr. Larry Sherman, neuroscientist at OHSU, will focus on these and other questions that reveal much about how neurochemical changes can have major effects on our behaviors—how we love, what we love, and who we love.

Dr. Sherman has given this talk in 2017 and before, but this will be an updated version with new studies and information.

 


Science on Tap at the Kiggins is produced in partnership with  Campus Sig-Horz Vancouver

Monday, January 29, 2018, in Portland

Antarctica: Life and Science on a Changing Continent

Have you ever wondered what’s it like to live and work in Antarctica? At this special Science on Tap, we’ll talk to two scientists who have spent a combined total of over 20 field seasons on the continent, surviving and doing science in one of the Earth’s harshest environments.

Todd Rosenstiel, PhD, associate professor of biology and past director of Portland States’s Center for Life in Extreme Environments spends much of his time studying mosses and other extremophiles that have evolved ways to live in severe conditions, and will tell us how these organisms are contributing to the greening of Antarctica. Andrew G. Fountain, PhD, professor of geography and geology at PSU, has spent years studying the glaciers of Antarctica and will talk about how climate change is reflected in shifting snow and ice. Both scientists will tell stories about working in Antarctica — Todd at the greening edge and Andrew in the icy middle — will show pictures, and answer questions about what it’s like to live at the bottom of the world.

This event is in collaboration with the Artists Repertory Theatre’s production of Magellanica.

Tuesday, January 16, 2018, in Portland

Cause and Effect: Racism, Poverty, and Public Health

The lives of many Americans are shaped by living with long-term trauma brought on by discrimination and poverty. Chronic exposure to adverse life events such as racism or racialization, gender-based prejudice, fewer opportunities for education and employment, high rates of incarceration, and systemic inequity have tangible health effects on both individuals and communities. Although uniquely complicated, science can help navigate the scope of the mechanisms and their real world impact, and hopefully help us engage the issue to redress the harm.

At this Science on Tap, epidemiologist Dr. Frank A. Franklin, PhD, JD, MPH, Director of the Community Epidemiology Services at the Multnomah County Health Department, will explore the intersection of inequality and public health and the search for how to improve the well-being of vulnerable populations.

Tuesday, December 5, 2017, in Portland

Treknology: The Real-Life Science Behind Star Trek’s Technologies

From tricorders to warp drive, Star Trek became the first series to bring us a vision of a future where humans were just as flawed as ever, but where technology and the way we used it had created a utopian society. There was no hunger, no homelessness, no rampant diseases, only long-lived humans exploring the galaxy, enjoying all the comforts one could ask for in life. Many of these technologies, dreamed up by Star Trek, are already real, while others are quickly approaching, and a few still remain elusive. From communications to starships to medical breakthroughs to civilian life, Star Trek promised us a future we can all aspire to. At this Science on Tap, hear theoretical physicist and author Ethan Siegel, PhD, talk about his new book Treknology: The Real-Life Science Behind Star Trek’s Technologies. As we attempt to “make it so,” let’s take a look at the real-life science of how far we’ve come!

Ethan Siegel was born in New York, majored in three different things as an undergrad, and got his Ph.D. in theoretical physics. Yes, you indecisive young people, there is hope. After postdoctoral research focusing on dark matter and cosmic structure formation, he became a physics professor and a professional science communicator. The communication was more fun, so now he writes and speaks full-time, including for Forbes, and NASA. His blog, Starts With A Bang, was voted the #1 science blog on the internet by the Institute of Physics, and, separately, by Real Clear Science. His first book, Beyond The Galaxy, is available today, and his second, Treknology, about the real-life science behind the technologies envisioned by Star Trek, was released in October 2017.

Monday, November 13, 2017, in Portland

Where the Animals Go: Tracking Wildlife with Technology in 50 Maps and Graphics

For thousands of years, tracking animals was a painstaking process that meant following physical traces. Today, with the use of satellites, drones, camera traps, cellphone networks, accelerometers and DNA sequencing, we can better understand how animals move-about, adapt, and respond to their environment. This new, data-driven footprint brings intimate detail to our understanding of the animal kingdom—not only how animals behave, but how to aid in their survival. According to sea turtle researcher Archie Carr, “To protect animals you need to protect where they go.”
At the forefront of this animal-tracking revolution are incredible stories of survival, strength and adaptation, such as:

  • Arctic terns that make annual migrations farther than any commercial airline flight.
  • Elephant seals that measure ocean temperature under the ice shelves of Antarctica.
  • Warblers that detect incoming storms and fly out of harm’s way.
  • Sea turtles and pythons that possess internal compasses to navigate.
  • A young wolf who traverses the Alps in the depths of winter—and finds a mate on the other side.

Through stunning, four-color charts and maps, Where the Animals Go by James Cheshire, Associate Professor at University College London, and Oliver Uberti, helps shed light on the techniques scientists use to gather data and understand and predict animal behavior. From cutting-edge magnetic collars to tags made with cork and piano wire, scientists are tireless in their efforts to track and study animals using a balance of cutting-edge technology and good, old-fashioned scientific methods. This book, which Jane Goodall says, “is beautiful as well as informative and inspiring. There is no doubt it will help in our fight to save wildlife and wild habitats.” It put the fruits of this scientific research and labor on gorgeous display in an immensely approachable manner. Join us at this special Science on Tap where co-author Oliver Uberti, award-winning designer, visual journalist, and former senior design editor for National Geographic, will talk about this triumph of technology, data science, and design, that brings perspective and intimate detail to our understanding of the animal kingdom.

James and Oliver’s best-selling debut, London: The Information Capital, won three British Cartographic Society Awards for cartographic excellence.

This event is in partnership with Wordstock: Portland’s Book Festival, brought to you by Literary Arts.

Books will be available for sale and signing, brought to you by Broadway Books.

Wednesday, November 8, 2017, in Vancouver

Treknology: The Real-Life Science Behind Star Trek’s Technologies

From tricorders to warp drive, Star Trek became the first series to bring us a vision of a future where humans were just as flawed as ever, but where technology and the way we used it had created a utopian society. There was no hunger, no homelessness, no rampant diseases, only long-lived humans exploring the galaxy, enjoying all the comforts one could ask for in life. Many of these technologies, dreamed up by Star Trek, are already real, while others are quickly approaching, and a few still remain elusive. From communications to starships to medical breakthroughs to civilian life, Star Trek promised us a future we can all aspire to. At this Science on Tap, hear theoretical physicist and author Ethan Siegel, PhD, talk about his new book Treknology: The Real-Life Science Behind Star Trek’s Technologies. As we attempt to “make it so,” let’s take a look at the real-life science of how far we’ve come!

Ethan Siegel was born in New York, majored in three different things as an undergrad, and got his Ph.D. in theoretical physics. Yes, you indecisive young people, there is hope. After postdoctoral research focusing on dark matter and cosmic structure formation, he became a physics professor and a professional science communicator. The communication was more fun, so now he writes and speaks full-time, including for Forbes, and NASA. His blog, Starts With A Bang, was voted the #1 science blog on the internet by the Institute of Physics, and, separately, by Real Clear Science. His first book, Beyond The Galaxy, is available today, and his second, Treknology, about the real-life science behind the technologies envisioned by Star Trek, comes out in October, 2017.

This event will be repeated at the Alberta Rose Theatre on Tuesday, December 5, 2017.


Science on Tap at the Kiggins is produced in partnership with  Campus Sig-Horz Vancouver

Wednesday, November 1, 2017, in Portland

Gender, Sex, and Biology

At least 16 states have recently introduced legislation to restrict access to multiuser restrooms and locker rooms on the basis of sex. Many of these bills use terms like “biological sex,” “genetic sex,” and “sex as determined by anatomy and genetics existing at the time of birth.” Some of these bills also use the phrase “sex or gender,” implying that those terms are synonymous. But are biological sex and gender the same thing? Do anatomy and genetics completely determine sex and/or gender? How do biologists describe sex determination in humans and other animals? Is gender a biological term at all?

At this Science on Tap, Lisa Sardinia, PhD, JD, associate professor of biology at Pacific University will approach the biological basis of sexual reproduction from a scientific perspective. She will describe the mechanisms of sex determination in humans, how those processes relate to the terms “sex” and “gender,” and how things are not quite as simple as they might seem.

Monday, October 16, 2017, in Portland

Exploring the Deep Sea with Nautilus Live

How do you get people excited about the dark, unexplored corners of our planet — our oceans? For oceanographer Robert Ballard, the answer to this is question simple: bring the mysteries of the deep ocean into the homes and classrooms of millions of people, live.

This summer, three Portland educators, Alfonso Garcia Arriola, Linda Fergusson-Kolmes, and Jenny Woodman, joined Ballard’s Corps of Exploration on board the E/V Nautilus — a 64-meter research vessel outfitted with cutting-edge technology for ocean exploration and education. Using remotely operated and autonomous vehicles in the Eastern Pacific Ocean, the corps visited deep sea coral and sponge communities, underwater volcanoes and so much more.

At this Science on Tap, join Alfonso, Linda, and Jenny to learn about seafloor mapping, otherworldly deep sea organisms, science communication, and slice of life at sea!

Wednesday, October 11, 2017, in Vancouver

Should Humans Play Football? The Neuroscience of Concussions

We humans have always loved dangerous sports, from ancient chariot racing all the way to today’s football, soccer, and hockey. Despite safety equipment, the sight of a player being checked for a head injury has become increasingly common. Growing evidence indicates that multiple concussions and similar injuries to the head can accelerate certain forms of dementia and lead to chronic traumatic encephalopathy (CTE). What does that mean for both professional athletes and for your kids who play on after school sports teams?

Dr. Larry Sherman is a neuroscientist at OHSU, and his lab has been exploring how the brain responds to certain types of injury and will explore the mechanisms underlying the brain’s responses to injury and possible ways to reverse brain damage. Dr. Sherman has spoken at several earlier events, including on The Neuroscience of Pleasure and Love, Every Brain Needs Music, and You and Your Racist Brain: The Neuroscience of Prejudice, but at this event he will be talking about his own research.


Science on Tap at the Kiggins is produced in partnership with  Campus Sig-Horz Vancouver

Wednesday, October 4, 2017, in Portland

A Scientific Approach to Raising an Ideal Dog

Most people raise dogs as if they are mini furry people, but they’re not. Canines are proud members of a different species with very different sensory systems and somewhat different social structure. At this Science on Tap, Dr. Rolan Tripp, a veterinarian and animal behaviorist, will talk about understanding how dogs think and why they behave the way they do. He will show how to measure and graph both wanted and unwanted canine personality traits, and will give behavioral science-based suggestions on how to increase mutual trust, respect, and bonding with your dog.

Dr. Tripp holds a doctorate in veterinary medicine as well as academic degrees in Philosophy and Music. He is a past Affiliate Professor of Applied Animal Behavior at two US Veterinary Schools, and certified by the International Assn of Animal Behavior Consultants. Dr. Tripp has published over 40 articles on pet behavior, and given over 100 lectures to veterinary associations. In addition to the Smithsonian Institution in Washington, DC, he has presented in England, Japan, Puerto Rico, and Canada, including giving the Keynote Address at an international veterinary meeting. He has appeared on Animal Planet over 20 times as a content expert and is currently Chief Behaviorist for Hannah the Pet Society in Portland, Oregon.

Wednesday, September 13, 2017, in Vancouver

The New Adolescent Sexuality: Life, Lust, and Learning

Chances are pretty good that if you’re an adult, you’ve had a question or two about sex in your life…anything from “what kind of contraception should I use?” to “what actually counts as ’sex’?” Maybe you got answers to those questions, maybe not. If you have kids or young people in your life, they DEFINITELY have questions about sex. But some things have changed since you were young, what with social media and sexting and people identifying as having non-binary genders and the like, and it may be confusing and embarrassing to talk to your kids, especially if you don’t have the answers yourself.

At this Science on Tap, Dr. L. Kris Gowen, author of Sexual Decisions: The Ultimate Teen Guide, will talk about what’s new in teen sexuality (for example, did you know that teen pregnancy rates are DOWN?), how to get reliable and trustworthy information about sex, what information is and is not being covered in schools, and how to talk about this subject with the young people in your life. We welcome both adults and teens at this event.


Science on Tap at the Kiggins is produced in partnership with  Campus Sig-Horz Vancouver

Tuesday, Sept 5, 2017, in Portland

The Neuroscience of Pain: The Good, the Very Bad, and the Ugly

Pain is the most important and misunderstood sensory system: you cannot live without it, yet we live every day trying to avoid it. Dr. Morgan cannot cure your pain (he’s not that kind of doctor), but he will explain how your nervous system codes pain, how your brain tries to control it, and how drugs provide relief. And don’t worry… he plans for this talk to be entertaining and pain-free.

Dr. Michael Morgan is a Professor of Psychology at Washington State University Vancouver, and has studied the neural mechanisms of pain modulation for over thirty years. He earned a doctorate in Physiological Psychology from UCLA and conducted post-doctoral research in Neurology at UC San Francisco before joining the faculty at WSU Vancouver, where he has won teaching and research awards.

August 19-21, 2017, in Eastern Oregon

Solar Eclipse Event with Atlas Obscura

Science on Tap will be providing some space science activities at this special eclipse event in Eastern Oregon!

Atlas Obscura invites you to celebrate this rare astronomical event on a gorgeous, secluded farm nestled in Oregon’s Snake River Valley. For more information, click here to visit the event page.

For two days, take part in an all-out festival of wonder featuring celebrated scientists, writers, musicians and explorers, plus an under-the-stars musical performance. At the end of it all, you’ll experience the Total Eclipse itself—two minutes of midday darkness that you may never have the chance to see again.

Wednesday, August 9, 2017, in Vancouver

The Sights, Safety, and Science of the Great American Eclipse

On August 21, 2017, the continental United States will experience its first total eclipse since 1979, and its first coast-to-coast eclipse since 1918. With over 12 million people in the path of totality and nearly 200 million within a single day’s drive, this may become the most watched eclipse in world history. From what you can expect to see to how to stay safe to the current and historical science that eclipses have brought us, this talk should give you all the information you need for an unforgettable eclipse experience!

Ethan Siegel was born in New York, majored in three different things as an undergrad, and got his Ph.D. in theoretical physics. Yes, you indecisive young people, there is hope. After postdoctoral research focusing on dark matter and cosmic structure formation, he became a physics professor and a professional science communicator. The communication was more fun, so now he writes and speaks full-time, including for Forbes, and NASA. His blog, Starts With A Bang, was voted the #1 science blog on the internet by the Institute of Physics, and, separately, by Real Clear Science. His first book, Beyond The Galaxy, is available today (and yes, he has copies to sign), and his second, Treknology, about the real-life science behind the technologies envisioned by Star Trek, comes out in October.


Science on Tap at the Kiggins is produced in partnership with  Campus Sig-Horz Vancouver

Monday, July 17, 2017, in Portland

Microbes and the Human Gut

Back by popular demand! This is a repeat of the talk held at the Clinton Street Theater on Tuesday, April 4, 2017.

The human body has trillions of cells, but only about 1/10th of those cells are actually human. The rest are microbes that live in and on our bodies, and collectively they’re called the “human microbiome,” and we couldn’t survive without them. They make vitamins for us, help us digest food, and battle disease-causing microbes, and they may influence our behavior, particularly in what and how much we eat. However, disturbances to the gut microbiome, perhaps through antibiotic overuse, have been associated with obesity, asthma, and autism. Understanding how a body’s microbiome is unbalanced or not functioning optimally may help lead to new and unusual treatments such as use of probiotics, prebiotics, and fecal transplants. (Really.)

At this Science on Tap, Dr. Lisa Sardinia, associate professor of biology at Pacific University, will explain what the microbiome is, how it can get out of balance, and how we may be able to restore health by deliberately changing the kinds or numbers of microbes that share our bodies.

Wednesday, July 12, 2017, in Vancouver

Decoding Cats: Secrets of Feline Body Language

Have you ever watched a funny cat video (or your own cat) and wondered, “Why are they doing THAT!??” At this Science on Tap, Dr. Rolan Tripp, veterinarian and animal behaviorist, will start with a basic introduction to feline body language – both between cats and when TRYING to communicate with people. (Once you know what to look for, few things are as entertaining as “Cat Social Politics.”) Then we’ll analyze several internet cat videos, and after giggling, decode the underlying brain-muscle mechanisms of impulse control, reaction thresholds, and the fine line between quirky and crazy.

Dr. Tripp holds a doctorate in veterinary medicine as well as academic degrees in Philosophy and Music. He is an Affiliate Professor of Applied Animal Behavior at two US Veterinary Schools, and certified by the International Assn of Animal Behavior Consultants. Dr. Tripp has published over 40 articles on pet behavior, and given over 100 lectures to veterinary associations. In addition to the Smithsonian Institution in Washington, DC, he has presented in England, Japan, Puerto Rico, and Canada, including giving the Keynote Address at an international veterinary meeting. He has appeared on Animal Planet over 20 times as a content expert.

Dr. Tripp has also spoken at several previous Science on Tap events on Inside the Feline Mind, and A Scientific Approach to Raising an Ideal Dog in both Portland and Vancouver.


Science on Tap at the Kiggins is produced in partnership with  Campus Sig-Horz Vancouver

THURSDAY, July 6, 2017, in Portland

Evolution Under the Influence: Alcohol and the Coevolution of Humans and Yeast

Have you ever sat down at a bar, ordered a beer, and thought to yourself, “Why do humans even have specific genes for breaking down alcohol?” This is what happens when a guy with a PhD in Molecular and Medical Genetics from OHSU gets a job working at a brewery. The answer, as it turns out, takes you a long way back in human history; our relationship with yeast (the organism that makes alcohol), predates human evolution. At this Science on Tap, Dr. Kevin McCabe, Lab Supervisor at Full Sail Brewing, will take you through the history of primate alcohol consumption, the importance of yeast to human history, and how early microbiology turned the tables on yeast and gave humans control over our boozy destiny.

This is a repeat of the talk given on March 8, 2017, at the Kiggins Theatre in Vancouver.

Thursday, June 22, 2017, in Portland

Grunt: The Curious Science of Humans at War, with author Mary Roach!

Much of military science is necessarily preoccupied with the study of violence, the development of strategy, of weapons and armaments, of warfare. But not all the battles of war involve drone technology and Bradley Personnel Vehicle. On a daily basis, soldiers also fight more esoteric battles against less considered adversaries—for example, exhaustion, shock, panic, disease, extreme heat, cataclysmic noise, gastrointestinal distress, and assorted waterfowl.

In Grunt: The Curious Science of Humans at War, America’s favorite science writer, Mary Roach—the author of Stiff, Spook, Bonk, Packing for Mars, and Gulp—explores those aspects of war that no one makes movies about—not the killing but the keeping alive. Grunt salutes the scientists and surgeons running along in the wake of combat, lab coats flapping. With her characteristic sense of humor, her indefatigable enthusiasm, and her sharp eye for telling detail, Roach, as always, proves to be the ideal tour guide, whether observing two maggots devour a third on the tip of her index finger, courtesy of George Peck, resident filth fly expert at the Entomology Branch of the Walter Reed Army Institute of Research; sniffing Stench Soup, a superlative malodorant (i.e., stink bomb) described as “Satan on a throne of rotting onions,” designed to efficiently clear buildings or disperse violent mobs; or attending medic training with the $57,000 Strategic Operations Cut Suit, a “human-worn” patient simulator with skin that actually “bleeds” when pierced. At this Science on Tap, Roach will talk about her book and will introduce us to a range of quirky but essential scientific endeavors.

Wednesday, June 14, 2017, in Vancouver

The Neuroscience of Pain: The Good, the Very Bad, and the Ugly

Pain is the most important and misunderstood sensory system: you cannot live without it, yet we live every day trying to avoid it. Dr. Morgan cannot cure your pain (he’s not that kind of doctor), but he will explain how your nervous system codes pain, how your brain tries to control it, and how drugs provide relief. And don’t worry… he plans for this talk to be entertaining and pain-free.

Dr. Michael Morgan is a Professor of Psychology at Washington State University Vancouver, and has studied the neural mechanisms of pain modulation for over thirty years. He earned a doctorate in Physiological Psychology from UCLA and conducted post-doctoral research in Neurology at UC San Francisco before joining the faculty at WSU Vancouver, where he has won teaching and research awards.
 


Science on Tap at the Kiggins is produced in partnership with  Campus Sig-Horz Vancouver

Wednesday, June 7, 2017, in Portland

Inside the Feline Mind

Back by popular demand! This is a repeat of the sold-out events held at the Alberta Rose Theatre on Tuesday, March 14, and at the Kiggins Theatre on April 12.

Have you ever wondered what goes inside your cat’s furry little brain? Let Dr. Rolan Tripp, a veterinarian and animal behaviorist, take you on a guided tour through the feline mind, from genetics to geriatrics. Learn answers to questions like:

  • Why do cats hiss?
  • Why bring me a dead mouse?
  • Why head-butt people as affection?
  • Why ask for stroking then attack a person for doing it?
  • Why not just use the perfectly good litter box you provide for them?

Come to this entertaining lecture to get an entirely new perspective on the semi-wild animal in your life.

Dr. Tripp holds a doctorate in veterinary medicine as well as academic degrees in Philosophy and Music. He is an Affiliate Professor of Applied Animal Behavior at two US Veterinary Schools, and certified by the International Assn of Animal Behavior Consultants. Dr. Tripp has published over 40 articles on pet behavior, and given over 100 lectures to veterinary associations. In addition to the Smithsonian Institution in Washington, DC, he has presented in England, Japan, Puerto Rico, and Canada, including giving the Keynote Address at an international veterinary meeting. He has appeared on Animal Planet over 20 times as a content expert.

Monday, May 22, 2017, in Portland

The Neuroscience of Pleasure and Love, at Artists Rep.

This event is in collaboration with the Artists Repertory Theatre’s production of The Importance of Being Earnest.
It is also a repeat of the two sold-out shows held at the Alberta Rose Theatre in February and March, 2017.

Is the brain chemistry behind our love for chocolate equivalent to that which drives infatuation with a new lover, the love of a particular song, or addiction? How does the brain sort out pleasure and discomfort? What drives our decisions to stay with one person for life or go from one lover to another, never settling down? At this Science on Tap, Dr. Larry Sherman, neuroscientist at OHSU, will focus on these and other questions that reveal much about how neurochemical changes can have major effects on our behaviors—how we love, what we love, and who we love.

Thursday, April 20, 2017, in Portland

Sign-Making Party for the March for Science

Do you believe that science is important? Are you frustrated about how science, scientists, and evidence-based policymaking are under attack? Do you want to stand up in support of science?

On Saturday, April 22, the March for Science is happening in downtown Portland and around the world, and it’s a chance to show your support for the vital role science plays in our health, safety, economies, and governments.

To prepare for the March, join us on Thursday, April 20, at the Lucky Lab Brew Pub in Portland to make signs to carry at the March! It will be a casual evening with time to meet with other science enthusiasts, make plans for marching on Saturday, and to make clever signs. We will provide poster paper and markers for anyone to use. Even if you’re not joining in the March on Saturday, you’re welcome to come to the sign-making party to help show your support for science and create signs for others to carry.

This is a free event and you can drop by anytime between 6:00-9:00pm. Food and drink will be available for purchase.

Want to help out but can’t attend? Donate to the March for Science!

Image: https://twitter.com/Hilarx

Wednesday, April 12, 2017, in Vancouver

Inside the Feline Mind

Have you ever wondered what goes inside your cat’s furry little brain? Let Dr. Rolan Tripp, a veterinarian and animal behaviorist, take you on a guided tour through the feline mind, from genetics to geriatrics. Learn answers to questions like:

  • Why do cats hiss?
  • Why bring me a dead mouse?
  • Why head-butt people as affection?
  • Why ask for stroking then attack a person for doing it?
  • Why not just use the perfectly good litter box you provide for them?

Come to this entertaining lecture to get an entirely new perspective on the semi-wild animal in your life.

Dr. Tripp holds a doctorate in veterinary medicine as well as academic degrees in Philosophy and Music. He is an Affiliate Professor of Applied Animal Behavior at two US Veterinary Schools, and certified by the International Assn of Animal Behavior Consultants. Dr. Tripp has published over 40 articles on pet behavior, and given over 100 lectures to veterinary associations. In addition to the Smithsonian Institution in Washington, DC, he has presented in England, Japan, Puerto Rico, and Canada, including giving the Keynote Address at an international veterinary meeting. He has appeared on Animal Planet over 200 times as a content expert.

 


Science on Tap at the Kiggins is produced in partnership with  Campus Sig-Horz Vancouver

Tuesday, April 4, 2017, in Portland

Microbes and the Human Gut

The human body has trillions of cells, but only about 1/10th of those cells are actually human. The rest are microbes that live in and on our bodies, and collectively they’re called the “human microbiome,” and we couldn’t survive without them. They make vitamins for us, help us digest food, and battle disease-causing microbes, and they may influence our behavior, particularly in what and how much we eat. However, disturbances to the gut microbiome, perhaps through antibiotic overuse, have been associated with obesity, asthma, and autism. Understanding how a body’s microbiome is unbalanced or not functioning optimally may help lead to new and unusual treatments such as use of probiotics, prebiotics, and fecal transplants. (Really.) At this Science on Tap, Dr. Lisa Sardinia, associate professor of biology at Pacific University, will explain what the microbiome is, how it can get out of balance, and how we may be able to restore health by deliberately changing the kinds or numbers of microbes that share our bodies.

Monday, March 27, 2017, in Portland

Love, Trauma, and Bonding: How Early Experiences Shape Who We Become

This event is in collaboration with the Artists Repertory Theatre’s production of Feathers and Teeth.

Your experiences in early childhood are not just the beginning of your life story, rather, they set the tone for how you will respond to life events for years to come. Childhood experiences that are consistently stressful or traumatic get “under the skin” and shape the brain and the body in ways that put us at risk for mental and physical health problems as adults. These experiences can also affect the way we parent our children. At this Science on Tap, Sara Waters, PhD, professor of Human Development at WSU Vancouver, will talk about how and why traumatic childhood experiences stay inside our minds and bodies for a lifetime and what we can do about it. She will talk about her research on how parents transmit stress to their children and intervention programs that help heal the effects of early trauma.

This is an updated version of the talk What Doesn’t Kill You… How Early Experiences Shape You, Your Health, and Your Kids held at the Clinton Street Theater on December 6, 2016.

Saturday, March 18, 2017, in Portland

SOLD OUT: The Neuroscience of Pleasure and Love – Repeat!

Is the brain chemistry behind our love for chocolate equivalent to that which drives infatuation with a new lover, the love of a particular song, or addiction? How does the brain sort out pleasure and discomfort? What drives our decisions to stay with one person for life or go from one lover to another, never settling down? At this Science on Tap, Dr. Larry Sherman, neuroscientist at OHSU, will focus on these and other questions that reveal much about how neurochemical changes can have major effects on our behaviors—how we love, what we love, and who we love.

Tuesday, March 14, 2017, in Portland

Inside the Feline Mind

Tonight’s event at the Alberta Rose Theatre has SOLD OUT. If you missed out on buying tickets, there’s good news! We’re repeating the topic on Wednesday, April 12, at the Kiggins Theatre in Vancouver. Hope you can join us there!

Have you ever wondered what goes inside your cat’s furry little brain? Let Dr. Rolan Tripp, a veterinarian and animal behaviorist, take you on a guided tour through the feline mind, from genetics to geriatrics. Learn answers to questions like:

  • Why do cats hiss?
  • Why bring me a dead mouse?
  • Why head-butt people as affection?
  • Why ask for stroking then attack a person for doing it?
  • Why not just use the perfectly good litter box you provide for them?

Come to this entertaining lecture to get an entirely new perspective on the semi-wild animal in your life.

Dr. Tripp holds a doctorate in veterinary medicine as well as academic degrees in Philosophy and Music. He is an Affiliate Professor of Applied Animal Behavior at two US Veterinary Schools, and certified by the International Assn of Animal Behavior Consultants. Dr. Tripp has published over 40 articles on pet behavior, and given over 100 lectures to veterinary associations. In addition to the Smithsonian Institution in Washington, DC, he has presented in England, Japan, Puerto Rico, and Canada, including giving the Keynote Address at an international veterinary meeting. He has appeared on Animal Planet over 200 times as a content expert.
 

Wednesday, March 8, 2017, in Vancouver

Evolution Under the Influence: Alcohol and the Coevolution of Humans and Yeast

Have you ever sat down at a bar, ordered a beer, and thought to yourself, “Why do humans even have specific genes for breaking down alcohol?” This is what happens when a guy with a PhD in Molecular and Medical Genetics from OHSU gets a job working at a brewery. The answer, as it turns out, takes you a long way back in human history; our relationship with yeast (the organism that makes alcohol), predates human evolution. At this Science on Tap, Dr. Kevin McCabe, Lab Supervisor at Full Sail Brewing, will take you through the history of primate alcohol consumption, the importance of yeast to human history, and how early microbiology turned the tables on yeast and gave humans control over our boozy destiny.

Tuesday, February 7, 2017, in Portland

Storm in a Teacup: The Physics of Everyday Life

Take a look up at the stars on a clear night and you get a sense that the universe is vast and untouchable, full of mysteries beyond comprehension. But did you know that the key to unveiling the secrets of the cosmos is as close as the nearest toaster? Our home here on Earth is messy, mutable, and full of humdrum things that we touch and modify without much thought every day. But these familiar surroundings are just the place to look if you’re interested in what makes the universe tick.

At this Science on Tap, Helen Czerski, PhD, author, Research Fellow at University College London, and science presenter for the BBC, will provide the tools to alter the way we see everything around us by linking ordinary objects and occurrences, like popcorn popping, coffee stains, and fridge magnets, to big ideas like climate change, the energy crisis, or innovative medical testing. Along the way, she offers answers to vexing questions: How does water travel from the roots of a redwood tree to its crown? How do ducks keep their feet warm when walking on ice? Why does milk, when added to tea, look like billowing storm clouds? You may never look at your toaster the same way.

Copies of Storm in a Teacup: The Physics of Everyday Life will be available for sale and signing.

Saturday, February 4, 2017, in Portland

SOLD OUT: The Neuroscience of Pleasure and Love

Just in time for Valentine’s Day!

Is the brain chemistry behind our love for chocolate equivalent to that which drives infatuation with a new lover, the love of a particular song, or addiction? How does the brain sort out pleasure and discomfort? What drives our decisions to stay with one person for life or go from one lover to another, never settling down? At this Science on Tap, Dr. Larry Sherman, neuroscientist at OHSU, will focus on these and other questions that reveal much about how neurochemical changes can have major effects on our behaviors—how we love, what we love, and who we love.

Wednesday, February 1, 2017, in Vancouver

Game Theory, Cooperation, and the Origins of Life

This event is one week earlier than our usual schedule.

Einstein famously said, “God does not play dice with the universe.” But could games have anything to do with the Origins of Life on the Earth? In this talk, Dr. Niles Lehman, professor of chemistry at Portland State University, will introduce the concept of game theory and make a connection between game theory’s principles and how life may have arisen on the Earth some four billion years ago. Surprisingly there may be a link between strategies that “players” use when in competitions, and the strategies that molecules use to behave in a life-like fashion.

NEW DATE: Wed, January 25, 2017, in Vancouver

Science Circus and the Physics of Fun

Science Circus is physics taught with hilarity and dexterity. Often compared to a Pixar movie, Science Circus blends mature science with comedy to create a show The Smithsonian Institution called, “wonderful.” Observe gravity’s constant acceleration through bowling ball juggling, gyroscopic stability through glass bowl spinning, centripetal force with cowboy lariats, center of balance from a six-foot tall unicycle, and inertia with a classic tablecloth pull. Come watch as master juggler Rhys Thomas describes and demonstrates physics concepts with the irresistible force of levity.

 

Tuesday, January 3, 2017, in Portland

More Than Hard Rock: Metals in Your Life

When one talks about metal and life, most people might immediately think of Metallica, or maybe about the dangers of lead in drinking water. But Dr. Kelly Chacón, professor of chemistry at Reed College, wants to tell you about the other amazing roles that all kinds of metals play: in our bodies, in ecology, and in helping our fight against newly emerging, antibiotic-resistant “superbugs”. Equal parts fascinating and formidable, the biological activity of metals like copper, silver, nickel, cobalt, and even arsenic will leave you with plenty to think about as you sip your beer.

Tuesday, December 13, 2016, in Portland

Memory and the Neuroscience of Addiction

Back by popular demand! This is a repeat of our sold out event held at the Clinton Street Theater on Tuesday, 9/6/16.

Starting from a very young age, humans are driven to seek out novel sensations and rewarding experiences; the brain is wired this way. During adolescence, some seek out drugs of abuse because they create novel sensations and can alter the perception of reality. Repeated exposure to these drugs creates new experiences in the form of powerful, persistent memories, and these drug-related memories are thought to underlie the relapse that can occur for decades, even after extended periods of abstinence. At this Science on Tap, Barbara Sorg, PhD, professor of neuroscience at WSU Vancouver, will talk about what happens in the brain with rewarding experiences and how drugs of abuse alter the structure and function of the brain to make drug addiction a chronic brain disease. She will also discuss how her laboratory uses animal models of addiction to weaken memories associated with cocaine.

Tuesday, December 6, 2016, in Portland

What Doesn’t Kill You… How Early Experiences Shape You, Your Health, and Your Kids

This is a repeat of the talk held at the Kiggins Theater in Vancouver on October 12, 2016.

Your experiences in early childhood are not just the beginning of your life story, rather, they set the tone for how you will respond to life events for years to come. Childhood experiences that are consistently stressful or traumatic get “under the skin” and shape the brain and the body in ways that put us at risk for mental and physical health problems as adults. These experiences can also affect the way we parent our children. At this Science on Tap, Sara Waters, PhD, professor of Human Development at WSU Vancouver, will talk about how and why traumatic childhood experiences stay inside our minds and bodies for a lifetime and what we can do about it. She will talk about her research on how parents transmit stress to their children and intervention programs that help heal the effects of early trauma.

Monday, November 28, 2016, in Portland

SOLD OUT! You and Your Racist Brain: The Neuroscience of Prejudice (Repeat!)

This is a repeat of the event held at Revolution Hall on October 3, 2016, and is in collaboration with the Artists Repertory Theatre’s production of A Civil War Christmas.

Racism exists when one group dominates, excludes, or seeks to eliminate another group on the basis of differences that it believes are inherent, hereditary, and unalterable. In large part, racism stems from the human brain’s tendency to engage in prejudice, a process that allows our brains to make judgments based on visual information in milliseconds. These preconceived opinions about other people are not based on reason or experience but on instinct—and they have a basis in neuroscience. But why does the brain do this? More importantly, can we use what we known about the neuroscience of prejudice to overcome this reaction, potentially developing methods to combat prejudice and end racism?

Dr. Larry Sherman, a Professor of Neuroscience at the Oregon Health & Science University, will explain how our brains react to people who are “different” and explore possible ways to overcome the automatic prejudice that contributes to racism in our society.

Larry Sherman is a Professor in the Department of Cell, Developmental and Cancer Biology and in the Neuroscience Graduate Program at the Oregon Health & Science University. He is also the President of the Oregon Chapter of the Society for Neuroscience. He has over 80 publications related to brain development and neurological diseases including Alzheimer’s disease, multiple sclerosis and neurofibromatosis. He serves on a number of US and international scientific review panels for the US National Institutes of Health, the US Congressionally-Directed Medical Research programs, and others. He has made numerous television appearances, discussing various topics related to neuroscience. He has also given hugely popular talks and performances (including playing the piano) around the globe on topics that include music and the brain, the neuroscience of pleasure and love, the neuroscience of racism, and a deeply personal presentation dealing with his recently discovered biological family and exploring the contributions of genes and environment to brain development and personality. The Oregon Museum of Science and Industry and Portland Monthly Magazine recognized Dr. Sherman as one of the “People who are changing our world”. He was also the 2012 Teacher of the Year at the Oregon Health & Science University School of Medicine.

Wednesday, November 9, 2016, in Vancouver

A Scientific Approach to Raising an Ideal Dog

Most people raise dogs as if they are mini furry people, but they’re not. Canines are proud members of a different species with very different sensory systems and somewhat different social structure. At this Science on Tap, Dr. Rolan Tripp, a veterinarian and animal behaviorist, will talk about understanding how dogs think and why they behave the way they do. He will show how to measure and graph both wanted and unwanted canine personality traits, and will give behavioral science-based suggestions on how to increase mutual trust, respect, and bonding with your dog.

Dr. Tripp holds a doctorate in veterinary medicine as well as academic degrees in Philosophy and Music. He is an Affiliate Professor of Applied Animal Behavior at two US Veterinary Schools, and certified by the International Assn of Animal Behavior Consultants. Dr. Tripp has published over 40 articles on pet behavior, and given over 100 lectures to veterinary associations. In addition to the Smithsonian Institution in Washington, DC, he has presented in England, Japan, Puerto Rico, and Canada, including giving the Keynote Address at an international veterinary meeting. He has appeared on Animal Planet over 200 times as a content expert.

(This is a repeat of the talk held at the Clinton Street Theater on July 5, 2016.)

Tuesday, November 1, 2016, in Portland

An Animal’s Guide to Dating Success

Have you ever wondered how animals find and impress that special someone? From crazy dances to unanticipated sex changes, animals have some unusual strategies for attracting and keeping their mates. Join Dr. Allison Coffin, Assistant Professor of Integrative Physiology and Neuroscience at WSU Vancouver, for this fun romp through the dating lives of birds, fish, and other animals. No date required!

Wednesday, October 12, 2016, in Vancouver

What Doesn’t Kill You… How Early Experiences Shape You, Your Health, and Your Kids

Your experiences in early childhood are not just the beginning of your life story, rather, they set the tone for how you will respond to life events for years to come. Childhood experiences that are consistently stressful or traumatic get “under the skin” and shape the brain and the body in ways that put us at risk for mental and physical health problems as adults. These experiences can also affect the way we parent our children. At this Science on Tap, Sara Waters, PhD, professor of Human Development at WSU Vancouver, will talk about how and why traumatic childhood experiences stay inside our minds and bodies for a lifetime and what we can do about it. She will talk about her research on how parents transmit stress to their children and intervention programs that help heal the effects of early trauma.

 


Science on Tap at the Kiggins is produced in partnership with  Campus Sig-Horz Vancouver

Monday, October 3, 2016, in Portland

You and Your Racist Brain: The Neuroscience of Prejudice

Racism exists when one group dominates, excludes, or seeks to eliminate another group on the basis of differences that it believes are inherent, hereditary, and unalterable. In large part, racism stems from the human brain’s tendency to engage in prejudice, a process that allows our brains to make judgments based on visual information in milliseconds. These preconceived opinions about other people are not based on reason or experience but on instinct—and they have a basis in neuroscience. But why does the brain do this? More importantly, can we use what we known about the neuroscience of prejudice to overcome this reaction, potentially developing methods to combat prejudice and end racism?

Dr. Larry Sherman, a Professor of Neuroscience at the Oregon Health & Science University, will explain how our brains react to people who are “different” and explore possible ways to overcome the automatic prejudice that contributes to racism in our society.

Larry Sherman is a Professor in the Department of Cell, Developmental and Cancer Biology and in the Neuroscience Graduate Program at the Oregon Health & Science University. He is also the President of the Oregon Chapter of the Society for Neuroscience. He has over 80 publications related to brain development and neurological diseases including Alzheimer’s disease, multiple sclerosis and neurofibromatosis. He serves on a number of US and international scientific review panels for the US National Institutes of Health, the US Congressionally-Directed Medical Research programs, and others. He has made numerous television appearances, discussing various topics related to neuroscience. He has also given hugely popular talks and performances (including playing the piano) around the globe on topics that include music and the brain, the neuroscience of pleasure and love, the neuroscience of racism, and a deeply personal presentation dealing with his recently discovered biological family and exploring the contributions of genes and environment to brain development and personality. The Oregon Museum of Science and Industry and Portland Monthly Magazine recognized Dr. Sherman as one of the “People who are changing our world”. He was also the 2012 Teacher of the Year at the Oregon Health & Science University School of Medicine.

Wednesday, September 14, 2016, in Vancouver

How Geckos Stick and Why We Care

Geckos can run up smooth vertical surfaces but, until recently, no one knew how they did it. Studying the physics of gecko feet at the nanoscale and measuring the tiny forces involved showed that gecko feet stick mechanically, not chemically. This discovery lead to the development of the world’s first adhesive that is dry, self-cleaning, reversible, and can even work in the vacuum of outer space. Designs based on gecko feet are being used to create robots that can run up walls and NASA grippers to clean up space junk. This adhesive could bring changes to the manufacture of everything from home electronics to car brakes. At this Science on Tap, Kellar Autumn, PhD, Professor of Biology and Entrepreneurship at Lewis & Clark College, will talk about gecko adhesion and how the study of strange animals has lead to biologically inspired materials and machines.


Science on Tap at the Kiggins is produced in partnership with  Campus Sig-Horz Vancouver

Tuesday, September 6, 2016, in Portland

Memory and the Neuroscience of Addiction

Starting from a very young age, humans are driven to seek out novel sensations and rewarding experiences; the brain is wired this way. During adolescence, some seek out drugs of abuse because they create novel sensations and can alter the perception of reality. Repeated exposure to these drugs creates new experiences in the form of powerful, persistent memories, and these drug-related memories are thought to underlie the relapse that can occur for decades, even after extended periods of abstinence. At this Science on Tap, Barbara Sorg, PhD, professor of neuroscience at WSU Vancouver, will talk about what happens in the brain with rewarding experiences and how drugs of abuse alter the structure and function of the brain to make drug addiction a chronic brain disease. She will also discuss how her laboratory uses animal models of addiction to weaken memories associated with cocaine.

 

Wednesday, August 10, 2016, in Vancouver

Every Brain Needs Music: Neuroscience, Performance, and Song

Back by popular demand! This is a repeat of the sold-out talk held at the Alberta Rose Theatre on Friday, June 24, 2016.

Music not only soothes the soul, but it can enhance the brain as well. At this Science on Tap, explore the origins of music, why humans enjoy making and listening to music, and how the brain behaves when we create music. Also, learn how music practice might improve brain development and prevent or limit the effects of aging and brain injury. In this multi-media presentation, Dr. Larry Sherman, an OHSU neuroscientist and accomplished pianist who studies normal brain development and neurodegenerative diseases, will combine musical performance, thought-provoking data, and lively discussion. Dr. Sherman is a Professor and Senior Scientist of Neuroscience at OHSU and President of the Oregon Chapter of the Society for Neuroscience.

Check out our podcast, A Scientist Walks Into A Bar, to hear some of Dr. Sherman’s earlier talks: The Neuroscience of Trauma: From Trigger Warnings to PTSD and The Neuroscience of Pleasure and Love.

Tuesday, August 2, 2016, in Portland

Drug Discovery and the Science of Medications

We all take drugs — Tylenol, Lipitor, Nexium, Viagra — but have you ever wondered how they’re developed? Drug discovery is a long, arduous and yet innovative scientific process that involves a wide variety of physicians and scientists including biologists, chemists, crystallographers, statisticians, pharmacologists, and many more. In this multi-media presentation, Leah Frye, Vice President of Schrödinger’s Drug Discovery Group, will describe the different approaches pharmaceutical and biotech companies take to find new drugs and the steps required for approval by the Food and Drug Administration (FDA). The talk will also highlight the important role computers and computational methods play in the overall drug discovery process with an emphasis on preclinical stages.

Wednesday, July 13, 2016, in Vancouver

Physics for Rock Stars: Making the Laws of the Universe Work for You

Come learn about physics with clarity, humor, and real world examples you can use in your daily life as a secret agent or lead singer. Christine McKinley, mechanical engineer, musician, and author of Physics for Rock Stars will explain why a solid understanding of the periodic table will help you decide who (and if) you should date and how the laws of motion and energy are your guides to an adventurous and drama-free life. There will be no equations, numbers, or tricky concepts—just an inspiring tour through the basics of physics and the beauty of the organized universe.

Tuesday, July 5, 2016, in Portland

A Scientific Approach to Raising an Ideal Dog

Most people raise dogs as if they are mini furry people, but they’re not. Canines are proud members of a different species with very different sensory systems and somewhat different social structure. At this Science on Tap, Dr. Rolan Tripp, a veterinarian and animal behaviorist, will talk about understanding how dogs think and why they behave the way they do. He will show how to measure and graph both wanted and unwanted canine personality traits, and will give behavioral science-based suggestions on how to increase mutual trust, respect, and bonding with your dog.

Friday, June 24, 2016, in Portland

Every Brain Needs Music: Neuroscience, Performance, and Song

Music not only soothes the soul, but it can enhance the brain as well. At this special Friday night Science on Tap, explore the origins of music, why humans enjoy making and listening to music, and how the brain behaves when we create music. Also, learn how music practice might improve brain development and prevent or limit the effects of aging and brain injury. In this multi-media presentation, Dr. Larry Sherman, an OHSU neuroscientist and accomplished pianist who studies normal brain development and neurodegenerative diseases, will combine musical performance, thought-provoking data, and lively discussion. Dr. Sherman is a Professor and Senior Scientist of Neuroscience at OHSU and President of the Oregon Chapter of the Society for Neuroscience.

Check out our podcast, A Scientist Walks Into A Bar, to hear some of Dr. Sherman’s earlier talks: The Neuroscience of Trauma: From Trigger Warnings to PTSD and The Neuroscience of Pleasure and Love.

Tuesday, June 14, 2016, in Portland

Genetic Treasures from Apple’s Ancestral Home

Note: This event will be one week later than our usual date.

An apple a day. Upset the apple cart. As American as apple pie. Apples are so common in society that they serve as a cultural touchstone for dozens of expressions. However, what do we really know about them? Until very recently, most of the apple varieties grown in the U.S. and the world have been derived from apple seedlings planted in North America by European settlers between the 17th and 19th centuries, and we typically see only a small fraction of the 100 or so varieties grown commercially. However, apples have been around for millennia and there are currently around 7,500 known apple cultivars grown worldwide. Phil Forsline, recently retired curator of the USDA’s Plant Genetics Resources Unit at Cornell University, will talk about his travels to Kazakhstan (the apple’s center of genetic diversity) and China to collect wild apple plant samples for conservation, evaluation, and distribution to geneticists and breeders worldwide. Forsline’s work, which could revolutionize the apple industry, was featured in The Botany of Desire by Michael Pollan. How ‘bout them apples?

Wednesday, June 8, 2016, in Vancouver

GMOs: The Good, The Really Good, and The Ugly

Genetically modified organisms (GMOs) are all over the news these days, and it’s hard to separate the fact from the fiction. Some people would have you believe that they are dangerous for humans, while others insist that they’re perfectly safe and are the best way to cure world hunger. How do you know what’s true? At this Science on Tap, Steven Sylvester, PhD, toxicologist and associate professor in the school of molecular biosciences at WSU Vancouver, will give a historical perspective of the controversies surrounding GMOs, the regulations, and the hype. He’ll discuss how science already plays a role in where our food comes from, and will arm you with data so that you can make the most informed decisions when choosing food for you and your family.
 

Monday, May 16, 2016, in Portland

The Neuroscience of Reality: Can You Trust Your Brain?

This is a repeat of the sold out talk held in Portland on Tuesday, March 1, 2016.

What is real and how do we know? The blue/gold dress illusion demonstrates that you can’t always trust your brain. Michael Morgan, PhD, Professor of Psychology at WSU Vancouver, will use sensory illusions to reveal how the nervous system creates perceptions of the world. In this case, what you see is not what you get. Come learn about the brain’s limitations, exaggerations, and omissions.

TUESDAY, May 16, 2017, in Vancouver

We Have No Idea: A Guide to the Unknown Universe

This is a special bonus Science on Tap event!

Why does the universe have a speed limit? What (or who) is attacking Earth with tiny, super-fast particles? What exactly is Dark Matter? And for that matter… What is matter?

PHD Comics’ Jorge Cham and particle physicist Daniel Whiteson are experts at explaining things. In their book, We Have No Idea: A Guide to the Unknown Universe, Cham & Whiteson explore why a vast portion of our universe is still a mystery, and what a lot of smart people are doing to understand it. Armed with their popular infographics, cartoons, and highly entertaining and lucid explanations of science, Cham and Whiteson explore some of the biggest holes in our cosmic knowledge. We Have No Idea features over 400 incredible, original illustrations, that illuminate everything from quarks and neutrinos to gravitational waves and exploding black holes. It’s the perfect book for anyone who is curious about big, universe-sized questions. At this Science on Tap, they will introduce their new book and will invite us to see the universe as an exciting expanse of mostly uncharted territory that’s still ours to explore.

Books will be available for sale and signing.

This Science on Tap event is co-sponsored by Science Talk NW, an organization dedicated to improving science communication and engagement in the Pacific Northwest. We host regional workshops and an annual conference, helping scientists better connect with diverse audiences to share their work and build a community passionate about making science fun and accessible for everyone.


Science on Tap at the Kiggins is produced in partnership with  Campus Sig-Horz Vancouver

Wednesday, May 11, 2016, in Vancouver

Memory and the Neuroscience of Addiction

Starting from a very young age, humans are driven to seek out novel sensations and rewarding experiences; the brain is wired this way. During adolescence, some seek out drugs of abuse because they create novel sensations and can alter the perception of reality. Repeated exposure to these drugs creates new experiences in the form of powerful, persistent memories, and these drug-related memories are thought to underlie the relapse that can occur for decades, even after extended periods of abstinence. At this Science on Tap, Barbara Sorg, PhD, professor of neuroscience at WSU Vancouver, will talk about what happens in the brain with rewarding experiences and how drugs of abuse alter the structure and function of the brain to make drug addiction a chronic brain disease. She will also discuss how her laboratory uses animal models of addiction to weaken memories associated with cocaine.

 



Science on Tap at the Kiggins is produced in partnership with  Campus Sig-Horz Vancouver


 

Wednesday, May 10, 2017, in Vancouver

Chicks Dig Science: Girls, Goggles, and Blowing Stuff Up

Picture a scientist. What do you see? Beakers? Check. Lab coats? Check. Wild fuzzy hair? Check. Old white dude? Check. Girl? Not so much. Today, right now, girls are killing it in math and science. They are taking more science credits in high school than boys and earning higher grades. What they aren’t doing is choosing science careers. Why is that? What does science have to say about this persistent gender gap?

Dr. Brandy Todd, AKA Eugene SLUG Queen Professor Doctor Mildred Slugwak Dresselhaus, Director of the Science Program to Inspire Creativity and Excellence (SPICE) has spent the last 10 years researching and implementing engaging, hands-on science with girls. At this Science on Tap Dr. Todd will dive deep into the obstacles girl scientists face, share what parents, teachers, and allies can do to support budding girls scientists, and extoll the virtue of a wicked set of bangs.

 


Science on Tap at the Kiggins is produced in partnership with  Campus Sig-Horz Vancouver

Wednesday, May 4, 2016, in Portland

How to Keep Hope and Good Health as Climate Change Worsens

DATE CHANGE! This event has been moved one day later than originally planned and is now on Wednesday, May 4.

It’s easy to get overwhelmed by the doom and gloom of climate science. Projections for Oregon show increasing risk of drought, wildfires, heat waves, storms, and floods, and predictions for worldwide consequences are even more scary. These impacts threaten our health and the systems that support us…but maybe there is a silver lining in this dark cloud looming? Climate change may be the greatest challenge we have known as a society, but it is also the greatest opportunity to achieve the kind of systemic change we need to improve the health of our communities and our environment. Come hear from Emily York, coordinator of the Oregon Climate and Health Program, about how the Oregon Health Authority is working with partners to integrate climate resilience strategies into our public health system.

This event is sponsored by Healthy Environments and Health Education & Promotion sections of the Oregon Public Health Association.

Tuesday, May 2, 2017, in Portland

Every Brain Needs Music: The Neuroscience of Composition, Interpretation, and Performance

Music not only soothes the soul, but it can enhance the brain as well. At this Science on Tap, explore the origins of music, why humans enjoy making and listening to music, and how the brain behaves when we create music. Also, learn how music practice might improve brain development and prevent or limit the effects of aging and brain injury. In this multi-media presentation, Dr. Larry Sherman, an OHSU neuroscientist and accomplished pianist who studies normal brain development and neurodegenerative diseases, will combine musical performance, thought-provoking data, and lively discussion. Dr. Sherman is a Professor and Senior Scientist of Neuroscience at OHSU and President of the Oregon Chapter of the Society for Neuroscience.

Saturday, April 22, 2017, in Portland

March for Science!

Do you believe that science is important? Are you frustrated about how science, scientists, and evidence-based policymaking are under attack?

Join us for a march through downtown Portland to show your support for SCIENCE!

On Saturday, April 22, the March for Science is happening in downtown Portland and around the world, and it’s a chance to show your support for the vital role science plays in our health, safety, economies, and governments.

We’ll update closer to the March date where Science on Tap marchers will be meeting.

Want to help out but can’t attend? Donate to the March for Science!

Wednesday, April 13, 2016, in Vancouver

It’s Not Easy Being Green: Fungus, Disease, And Frogs In Danger

 

Amphibians are at the forefront of the global extinction crisis, and emerging fungal diseases have accounted for a surprising number of amphibian declines and extinctions. At this Science on Tap, Jonah Piovia-Scott, PhD, Assistant Professor of Biological Sciences at Washington State University Vancouver, will talk about what these fungal pathogens are, how they kill amphibians, and efforts to prevent further amphibian losses to disease.

 


Science on Tap at the Kiggins is produced in partnership with  Campus Sig-Horz Vancouver

 

 

Tuesday, April 5, 2016, in Portland

Game Theory, Cooperation, and the Origins of Life

Einstein famously said, “God does not play dice with the universe.” But could games have anything to do with the Origins of Life on the Earth? In this talk, Dr. Niles Lehman, professor of chemistry at Portland State University, will introduce the concept of game theory and make a connection between game theory’s principles and how life may have arisen on the Earth some four billion years ago. Surprisingly there may be a link between strategies that “players” use when in competitions, and the strategies that molecules use to behave in a life-like fashion.

Wednesday, March 9, 2016, in Vancouver

Fat, Fertility, and the Brain: Understanding How Body Composition Controls Reproduction

There is relationship between women’s body composition and their fertility. When women are too thin they can stop menstruating and become infertile, and this is likely an evolutionary mechanism prevent mammals from becoming pregnant when food is scarce. However, with the rising obesity epidemic, too much body fat can be detrimental to fertility as well. At this Science on Tap, Dr. Cadence True, Staff Scientist at in the Division of Diabetes, Obesity, and Metabolism at OHSU, will talk about how hormonal signals to the brain help make sure that reproduction happens only during favorable metabolic conditions, and will describe the role the brain plays in the control of female reproductive cycling.


Science on Tap at the Kiggins is produced in partnership with  Campus Sig-Horz Vancouver

Tuesday, March 1, 2016, in Portland

The Neuroscience of Reality: Can You Trust Your Brain?

What is real and how do we know? The blue/gold dress illusion demonstrates that you can’t always trust your brain. Dr. Michael Morgan, Professor of Psychology at WSU Vancouver, will use sensory illusions to reveal how the nervous system creates perceptions of the world. In this case, what you see is not what you get. Come learn about the brain’s limitations, exaggerations, and omissions.

Wednesday, February 10, 2016, in Vancouver

Microbes and the Human Gut: Do These Bacteria Make Me Look Fat?

The human body has trillions of cells, but only about 1/10th of those cells are actually human. The rest are microbes that live in and on our bodies, and collectively they’re called the “human microbiome,” and we couldn’t survive without them. They make vitamins for us, help us digest food, and battle disease-causing microbes, and they may influence our behavior, particularly in what and how much we eat. However, disturbances to the gut microbiome, perhaps through antibiotic overuse, have been associated with obesity, asthma, and autism. Understanding how a body’s microbiome is unbalanced or not functioning optimally may help lead to new and unusual treatments such as use of probiotics, prebiotics, and fecal transplants. (Really.) At this Science on Tap, Dr. Lisa Sardinia, associate professor of biology at Pacific University, will explain what the microbiome is, how it can get out of balance, and how we may be able to restore health by deliberately changing the kinds or numbers of microbes that share our bodies.
 


Science on Tap at the Kiggins is produced in partnership with  Campus Sig-Horz Vancouver

Tuesday, February 2, 2016, in Portland

The Evil Hours: A Biography of Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder

Just as polio stalked the 1950s and AIDS overshadowed the 1980s and ‘90s, PTSD haunts us in the early years of the 21st century. Over a decade into America’s “global war on terror,” PTSD afflicts as many as 30 percent of the conflict’s veterans. But the disorder’s reach extends far beyond the armed forces. In total, some 27 million Americans are believed to be PTSD survivors. Yet to many of us, the disorder remains shrouded in mystery, secrecy, and shame.

At this special Science on Tap, David J. Morris — a war correspondent and former Marine — will talk about his book The Evil Hours: A Biography of Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder. Described as “provocative, exhaustively researched and deeply moving analysis of traumatic memory” by The New York Times Book Review, the book is a memoir of his own battles with post-traumatic stress, and it also explores the rich scientific, literary, and cultural history of the condition. This book speaks not only to those with PTSD and their loved ones, but to all of us struggling to make sense of an anxious and uncertain time. Morris will speak about the book and there will also be ample time for Q&A.

Saturday, January 23, 2016, in Portland

SPECIAL SATURDAY EVENT AT THE ALBERTA ROSE THEATRE! The Neuroscience of Trauma: From Trigger Warnings to PTSD

Experiencing traumatic events can lead to physical, chemical, and epigenetic alterations in the brain, and neuroscientists are beginning to understand how those changes affect our behavior. At this Science on Tap, Dr. Larry Sherman, a senior scientist in the Division of Neuroscience at Oregon Health & Science University (OHSU), will explore the various ways the brain is modified following traumatic events, and will look at ways neuroscientists are trying to address these changes to help people with PTSD, depression, and other neuropsychiatric disorders.

Dr. Larry Sherman has spoken at several of our past events, including You and Your Racist Brain: The Neuroscience of Prejudice, and Lust, Chocolate, and Prairie Voles: The Neuroscience of Pleasure and Love.

Wednesday, January 13, 2016, in Vancouver

Brains, Drugs, and Addiction: The Neuroscience of Chemical Dependency

We have all heard about people whose lives have been damaged or destroyed by abusing drugs or alcohol, and we’ve all probably wondered, “Why don’t they just stop? How hard could it be?” There are also people who use alcohol (for example, at science lectures) and drugs and who DON’T get addicted. At this Science on Tap, Kenneth Brown, PhD, a psychologist with 20 years of experience in drug and alcohol dependency program management, will talk about the neuroscience of addiction. He will describe the different areas of the brain involved and how they interact to produce stubborn, chronic conditions like alcoholism and other drug dependence. Also, the scientific and medical community is realizing that traditional programs like residential rehab, AA, and NA don’t work for everyone, and he will talk about how treatment practices are changing to help people succeed in being sober.


Science on Tap at the Kiggins is produced in partnership with  Campus Sig-Horz Vancouver

Tuesday, January 5, 2016, in Portland

A Vole Walks Into A Bar…What Animals Tell Us About Social Drinking

Social relationships play a powerful role to both promote and inhibit alcohol drinking. Likewise, alcohol drinking can make us more social, but can also be quite harmful to personal relationships. Studying social animals in the laboratory may help us identify the biological underpinnings of these interactions between alcohol and social environment.

This talk will primarily focus on recent research in the prairie vole, a monogamous rodent species. Monogamy includes pair bonding and biparental care, and while these behaviors are important for humans, they are rare among mammals. Prairie voles are an excellent model for understanding the evolution and neuroscience of social behavior. Research on voles has even contributed to the development of clinical trials for drug treatments for autism spectrum disorders and alcoholism. During this talk, we will discuss how voles can be used to model social drinking, first dates, and even treatment outcomes for alcohol addiction. You may realize you aren’t so different from a varmint after all.

Caroline M. Hostetler, PhD, is a behavioral neuroscientist using animal models of social behavior to inform prevention and future therapies for alcohol use disorder. Dr. Hostetler received her B.S. in Biology from the University of Maryland, and a PhD in Psychology from the University of California at Davis. She is currently a senior research associate in the Oregon Health and Science Department of Behavioral Neuroscience and Portland VA Medical Center. She has worked with a variety of animals, including golden lion tamarins, titi monkeys, rhesus macaques, vervet monkeys, California mice, meadow voles, prairie voles, and humans. She is also an active member of the Portland Women in Science group, encouraging retention, advocacy, and mentorship of women in the sciences across the greater Portland area.

Wednesday, December 9, 2015, in Vancouver

Science in the Courtroom: Misperceptions, Biases, and Eyewitness Testimony

Many people have been sent to jail because a witness says that they saw them commit a crime, but how reliable is that eyewitness evidence? Using visual illusions, Dr. Renee Magnan, Assistant Professor of Psychology at WSU Vancouver, will illustrate common errors in perception and memory that have important implications for eyewitness accuracy. She will also discuss biases that impact the perceived strength of eyewitness testimony and what might be done to reduce wrongful convictions from eyewitness error.


Science on Tap at the Kiggins is produced in partnership with  Campus Sig-Horz Vancouver

Wednesday, November 11, 2015, in Vancouver

The Neuroscience of Trauma: From Trigger Warnings to PTSD

Experiencing traumatic events can lead to physical, chemical, and epigenetic alterations in the brain, and neuroscientists are beginning to understand how those changes affect our behavior. At this Science on Tap, Dr. Larry Sherman, a senior scientist in the Division of Neuroscience at Oregon Health & Science University (OHSU), will explore the various ways the brain is modified following traumatic events, and will look at ways neuroscientists are trying to address these changes to help people with PTSD, depression, and other neuropsychiatric disorders.

Dr. Larry Sherman has spoken at several of our past events, including You and Your Racist Brain: The Neuroscience of Prejudice, and Lust, Chocolate, and Prairie Voles: The Neuroscience of Pleasure and Love.

 


Science on Tap at the Kiggins is produced in partnership with  Campus Sig-Horz Vancouver

Tuesday, Nov 3, 2015, in Portland

Fat, Fertility, and the Brain: Understanding How Body Composition Controls Reproduction

There is relationship between women’s body composition and their fertility. When women are too thin they can stop menstruating and become infertile, and this is likely an evolutionary mechanism prevent mammals from becoming pregnant when food is scarce. However, with the rising obesity epidemic, too much body fat can be detrimental to fertility as well. At this Science on Tap, Dr. Cadence True, Staff Scientist at in the Division of Diabetes, Obesity, and Metabolism at OHSU, will talk about how hormonal signals to the brain help make sure that reproduction happens only during favorable metabolic conditions, and will describe the role the brain plays in the control of female reproductive cycling.

Wednesday, October 14, 2015, in Vancouver

NASA’s Greatest Hits: Fifty Years of Exploring Our Solar System

A lot happened in NASA exploration of the solar system the summer of 2015, including the 10-year journey of New Horizons probe to the dwarf planet Pluto and the Dawn mission to dwarf planet Ceres in the asteroid belt. These missions cap a five-decade-long era of solar system reconnaissance that began with Venus and Mars in the early 1960s, and continued through first looks of Mercury, Jupiter, and Saturn in the 1970s, and Uranus and Neptune in the 1980s. Meaningfully, the July 14 flyby of Pluto occurred 50 years to the day after humans first explored Mars with NASA’s Mariner 4 on July 14, 1965. At this Science on Tap, Greg Cermak, a NASA Solar System Ambassador and former Astrobiology instructor at WSU, will take us on a tour of the greatest hits of five decades of NASA outer solar system exploration and the spacecraft that made it all possible.

Tuesday, Oct 6, 2015, in Portland

A Trip North: Exploring Arctic Climate and Working for Change in Alaska

At this Science on Tap, join us as Zach Brown, PhD, executive director of Inian Islands Institute talks about climate change in the Arctic and his effort to create an institute for education and research in Alaska. Through photos and stories, Zach will take you on two journeys: first, through the Arctic Ocean, where declining sea ice is changing life for biological communities and indigenous peoples, and where industrial expansion threatens a fragile ecosystem. Second, through the Pacific Northwest, where Zach trekked solo for 4 months on foot and by kayak – 2300 miles from Stanford University to the Inian Islands – to build a school in his Alaskan homeland.

Wednesday, September 9, 2015, in Vancouver

Oysters, Invaders, Sex and CO2

In addition to being tasty, oysters are a critical member of the ecosystem and the economic reality of the Pacific Northwest. And they’re in trouble. Invasive species and changing ocean conditions have killed thousands of oysters and cost the industry millions of dollars a year, but the recent publication of the Pacific Oyster genome has led to new ideas to try to overcome these losses. At this Science on Tap, Dr. Steve Sylvester, a molecular biologist at WSU Vancouver, will give a brief history of oystering in the Northwest and tell us his ongoing research aimed at helping the oyster industry to overcome biological and chemical problems that limit production.

Wednesday, September 9, 2015, in Vancouver

Oysters, Invaders, Sex and CO2

In addition to being tasty, oysters are a critical member of the ecosystem and the economic reality of the Pacific Northwest. And they’re in trouble. Invasive species and changing ocean conditions have killed thousands of oysters and cost the industry millions of dollars a year, but the recent publication of the Pacific Oyster genome has led to new ideas to try to overcome these losses. At this Science on Tap, Dr. Steve Sylvester, a molecular biologist at WSU Vancouver, will give a brief history of oystering in the Northwest and tell us his ongoing research aimed at helping the oyster industry to overcome biological and chemical problems that limit production.

Tuesday, Sept 1, 2015, in Portland

Jurassic Park: Coming Soon to a Zoo Near You?

Have you ever wondered how close technology has really come to creating a zoo of extinct animals? Or what goes on inside programs devoted to saving those close to extinction? Join reproductive physiologist Carrie Hanna and veterinarian Dominique Keller and hear about the science and the practice behind programs that support endangered species conservation. Learn about the techniques of assisted reproductive technology (ART) that are the foundation of many species survival plans (SSP) and advances in research that could change the way we prevent species decline. Then take a visual journey and discover what it is like working with populations of rare and endangered animals. Hear first-hand the challenges and rewards of traveling around the world to save the precious few.

Carrie Hanna, Ph.D. is a reproductive physiologist at the Oregon National Primate Research Center where she serves as the Associate Director for the Assisted Reproductive Technology Core and as the Scientific Support Manager for the Oregon Center for Research in Permanent Contraception. Dominique Keller, D.V.M, Ph.D., DACZM is a senior veterinarian at Busch Gardens in Tampa, Florida and is involved in clinical medicine and conservation research programs working with sloths, armadillos, and other wildlife. She can be seen weekly on the Emmy-nominated television series “The Wildlife Docs” where she and The Busch Gardens vet team care for over 12,000 exotic animals.

Wednesday, August 12, 2015, in Vancouver

The Neuroscience of Reality: Can You Trust Your Brain?

What is real, what is a sensory illusion, and how do we know? The blue/gold dress illusion demonstrates that you can’t always trust your brain. Dr. Michael Morgan, Professor of Psychology at WSU Vancouver, will use sensory illusions to reveal how the nervous system creates perceptions of the world. In this case, what you see is not what you get. Come learn about the brain’s limitations, exaggerations, and omissions.
 


Science on Tap at the Kiggins is produced in partnership with  Campus Sig-Horz Vancouver

Tuesday, Aug 4, 2015, in Portland

Sex Ed at the Molecular Level

On October 31, 2011, the world’s population reached 7 billion, 2 years ahead of projections by the United Nations. High birth rates are associated with developing countries where access to family planning services are limited. Inadequate contraceptive options and accessibility are also issues in the U.S. where ~50% of all pregnancies are unintended. At this Science on Tap, Jon Hennebold, PhD, Associate Scientist in the Division of Reproductive & Developmental Sciences at OHSU, will talk about research toward developing effective and safe contraceptive methods for couples seeking family planning options. (World Population Clock)

Wednesday, July 15, 2015, in Vancouver

Crime Scene Reconstruction: The Devil Is In The Details

Note: This event is one week later than our regular schedule.

Have you ever wondered how crime scene investigations actually work? At this Science on Tap, join Rod Englert of Englert Forensic Consultants as he takes you behind the scenes and explains how homicide investigations can test the limits of an investigator’s power of observation, intuitive thinking, and creative ability. He will walk you through the evidence of a homicide scene and show you how “everything means something.” Many case studies will be discussed including high-profile and controversial murders where evidence can often be “the devil in the details.”

Chief Deputy (Retired) Rod Englert, a 50-year veteran of law enforcement, retired as Commander of the Operations Division, Multnomah County Sheriff’s Office, Portland, Oregon, in 1995. Chief Deputy Englert has conducted over 600 lectures and training seminars on managing criminal investigations, solving unresolved homicides, blood spatter interpretation and crime scene reconstruction to law enforcement personnel, district attorneys and private attorneys in 35 states as well as in Canada, Russia, England, France, Portugal, and South America. He is also is the author of Blood Secrets: Chronicles of a Crime Scene Reconstructionist. Part autobiography and part casebook, Blood Secrets has earned praise from such respected sources as Publishers Weekly, which dubbed it “a fascinating journey into the study of crimson drops….deftly balanc[ing] real-life examples and scientific analysis.”
 


Science on Tap at the Kiggins is produced in partnership with  Campus Sig-Horz Vancouver

Tuesday, July 7, 2015, in Portland

Monkey Business: Using Science and Research to Improve the Welfare of Captive Primates

Caring for animals in captivity is a complicated task and many factors are involved in providing the best quality of life possible. Are the animals healthy? Are they housed in an appropriate environment? Do they experience positive emotions? We often assume we know the answers to these questions, but the needs of animals vary from species to species and can often be met through unusual and innovative means. At this Science on Tap, Dr. Daniel Gottlieb, Animal Behaviorist and Manager of Non-Human Primate Resources at OHSU’s Oregon National Primate Research Center, will explain how to take a scientific approach to evaluating and improving the welfare of captive animals in a laboratory, zoo, or production setting. Learn about how research is used to improve animal care through specific cases of animal welfare research and enrichment and management strategies for captive primates.

Wednesday, June 10, 2015, in Vancouver

Hanford and Our Nuclear Legacy or: How I Learned To Stop Worrying and Clean Up the Bomb

Hanford Nuclear Reservation, located on the Columbia River in eastern Washington, is the largest contaminated site in the western hemisphere. Used to make plutonium for nuclear bombs during WWII and the Cold War, the Hanford site generated vast quantities of chemical and radioactive pollution. Cleanup at Hanford began in 1989 and we know it will now continue for generations to come. Scientists have devised creative ways to contain the radioactive waste, such as turning liquid nuclear waste into glass for safer long-term storage, but technical problems continue to plague these proposed solutions. Meanwhile, contaminated groundwater and radioactive soil are ongoing concerns that pose risks to nearby and downstream communities. At this Science on Tap, Abigail Cermak, Hanford Coordinator with Columbia Riverkeeper, Dirk Dunning, Chemical Engineer & Nuclear Specialist from the Oregon Department of Energy, and Tom Carpenter, the Executive Director of Hanford Challenge will talk about the history of Hanford, how we built the atomic bomb, and what the government is doing to clean up the nuclear waste.
 


Science on Tap at the Kiggins is produced in partnership with  Campus Sig-Horz Vancouver

Tuesday, June 2, 2015, in Portland

Contamination and the Portland Harbor Superfund Site: DEQ’s Cleanup Before the Cleanup

The Portland Harbor Superfund Site is a stretch of the Willamette River north of downtown Portland where sediment was contaminated due to industrial activities over the past 100 years. Cleanup efforts are complex and involve numerous government and private organizations, and this talk will focus mainly on one aspect of the work: Oregon Department of Environmental Quality’s efforts to clean up properties that can contribute pollutants to the river. Onshore contaminants from still operating or long-shuttered industrial businesses can make their way into the river, and the DEQ has been working since the 1980s to prevent contamination from getting into the water.

At this Science on Tap, Keith Johnson, DEQ Northwest Region Cleanup Manager, and Alex Liverman, DEQ Portland Harbor Stormwater Coordinator, will talk about the cleanup efforts, including specific site examples of eroding soil/banks, groundwater, and stormwater. Hear about collaboration with the Environmental Protection Agency to ensure that on-going land-based activities don’t pollute the river again after EPA’s cleanup, and how plans are moving forward to clean up the river sediment.

Wednesday, May 13, 2015, in Vancouver

Parasites: A Global Health Problem

Parasites constitute a global health problem of unimaginable magnitude. Two out of three people worldwide are afflicted with a parasitic disease, and most people who harbor parasites actually are afflicted with a multiplicity of diseases. The organisms that are considered traditional parasites are either protozoa, worms, or insects, although viruses, bacteria, and fungi also meet the classic definition of a parasite. At this Science on Tap, Dr. Buddy Ullman, parasitologist at OHSU, will take a somewhat irreverent tour of the major time-honored parasites and describe where they live, how they reproduce, and what effect they have on humans. Warning: this talk will be both gross and fascinating!

(Note: This is a repeat of the talk held in Portland on January 6, 2015.)
 


Science on Tap at the Kiggins is produced in partnership with  Campus Sig-Horz Vancouver

Tuesday, May 5, 2015, in Portland

Ignoble Rot: Food Scraps as Compost and Energy

Food scraps comprise almost one-fifth of the amount of material our region sends to landfills every year – enough to fill 5000 long-haul trucks. These food scraps can provide compost, energy and other benefits to communities, but what are the most desirable environmental and economic approaches to dealing with this resource? What impact do food scraps have on the climate, water supplies, energy, and food security?

David Allaway, senior policy analyst with the Oregon Department of Environmental Quality, will share insights for different ways of dealing with food scraps while reducing what we throw away.

This event is part of Metro’s Let’s Talk Trash series designed to engage you in discussions that help shape how our region manages its waste in the future.LetsTalkTrash logos

Thursday, April 16, 2015, in Vancouver

Tales from the Biology Lab: Junk DNA and Magnificent Mosses

Due to a scheduling conflict, the date for this event has changed.
NEW DATE: Thursday, April 16. Still at Kiggins. All other details the same. See you there!

This Science on Tap will feature TWO speakers:

Junk in The Trunk: Recent Controversies in Genomics
You may have heard that less than 2% of the human genome is comprised of protein-coding DNA. So what is the 98% composed of, where does it come from, and what does it do? Sarah Schaack, PhD, assistant professor of biology at Reed College will take you on a guided tour through the genomic landscape of some fully sequenced plants and animals, including humans. Her talk will explore the recent heated debate among biologists surrounding “junk DNA”, its utility (or lack thereof), and why bigger isn’t necessarily better, at least when it comes to genome size.

Love Moss More! Totally Mossome Tales of Ancient Survival
Moss, found wherever you look in the Pacific Northwest, is an amazing and ancient survival machine. Though small, fuzzy, and unassuming, these plants are the bane of northwest rooftops. Yet, mosses grow on every continent, house a bizarre assortment of tiny, but terrifying, creatures, and may hold the key to global climate change. Todd Rosenstiel, PhD, Director of the Center for Life in Extreme Environments at Portland State University, will give us a glimpse into the secret and successful world of the mosses.
 


Science on Tap at the Kiggins is produced in partnership with  Campus Sig-Horz Vancouver

Tuesday, April 7, 2015, in Portland

In Hot Water: What is the Future of Our Freshwater Ecosystems?

Freshwaters are some of the most imperiled ecosystems on the planet. Human activities, such as those linked to climate change, invasive species, and pollution, have greatly accelerated the degradation of these critical ecosystems. Angela Strecker, PhD, assistant professor of Environmental Science and Management at Portland State University, will share some recent research and prospects for the future of healthy freshwaters in the Pacific Northwest and beyond.

Thursday, March 19, 2015, in Portland

Open House and Brainstorming Session

Do you like fun science events for adults? We at Science on Tap want to hear from YOU about how we can create more fun ways to learn about science and more opportunities to mingle with other smart people.

Do you have a suggestion for a topic we should feature? Have an idea for a field trip we should put together? Join us at this meeting to help shape what kinds of events happen in 2015 and beyond.

Drop in for a few minutes or spend the whole evening. Anyone who loves science for adults is invited! No RSVP required.

Wednesday, March 11, 2015, in Vancouver

This Is Your Brain on (Legal) Drugs: The Neuroscience and Art of Cannabis and Alcohol

Humans have used intoxicants like alcohol and marijuana for thousands of years, and we modern humans are no different. The Northwest is home to thriving beer, wine, and spirits industries, and now that both Washington and Oregon permit the recreational sale and use of marijuana, there are more legal opportunities to get high.

At this Science on Tap, have a beer and stimulate both sides of your brain as neuroscientist Bill Griesar, PhD, and artist Jeff Leake from NW Noggin discuss both the science and art of alcohol and marijuana. Find out how these drugs affect the chemistry of our brains and how they change our behavior. Also find out how some well-known artists have approached (and sometimes used) these drugs in the creation of works of art.

 


Science on Tap at the Kiggins is produced in partnership with  Campus Sig-Horz Vancouver

Tuesday, March 3, 2015, in Portland

Vaccination: The Risks, the Rewards, and the Reality

Vaccines are one of the greatest achievements of public health in the last century, and more is yet to be done. This success has saved countless lives — and created a backlash of vaccine hesitancy and denial that we are still seeking to understand. At this Science on Tap, hear from a panel of experts from the Multnomah County Health department, including epidemiologists, doctors, and other scientists, about how vaccines work, how they protect our communities, what the risks really are, and how you can make a difference.

Wednesday, February 11, 2015, in Vancouver

An Animal’s Guide to Dating Success

Just in time for Valentine’s Day! Have you ever wondered how animals find and impress that special someone? From crazy dances to unanticipated sex changes, animals have some unusual strategies for attracting and keeping their mates. Join Dr. Allison Coffin, Assistant Professor of Integrative Physiology and Neuroscience at WSU Vancouver, for this fun romp through the dating lives of birds, fish, and other animals. No date required! 


Science on Tap at the Kiggins is produced in partnership with  Campus Sig-Horz Vancouver

Tuesday, February 3, 2015, in Portland

Shaken, Not Stirred: The Coming Great Cascadia Earthquake

While we can’t predict exactly when the next Great Cascadia Earthquake will happen, we CAN forecast the probabilities from a long history of past earthquakes. The study of the geological history of the last 10,000 years of the Cascadia Subduction Zone has shown that there have been 43 great earthquakes (magnitude 8.0 or higher) along the coast of Oregon, Washington, California, and British Columbia. It’s likely that some of these earthquakes were magnitude 9.0 or higher, and as with the 2011 Japanese and 2004 Sumatran earthquakes, they probably also caused large tsunami waves that were devastating all over the Pacific. At this Science on Tap, Chris Goldfinger, PhD, professor of geology and geophysics at Oregon State University, will talk about the geology of Cascadia and his research on the recurrence interval of major earthquakes. While this research may not allow us to pinpoint a date for the next great quake, a better understanding of the geological forces at work can help us prepare.

Wednesday, January 14, 2015, in Vancouver

A Toast to Your Health: Fruit Flies, Alcohol, and Medicine

Those pesky fruit flies that seem to come out of nowhere have actually evolved a pretty sophisticated way to stay healthy. Fruit flies are often host to parasitic wasps who lay their eggs inside the flies and which, after they hatch, consume the flies from the inside out. (Yes, like the movie Alien.) Since fruit flies are often around rotting, fermenting fruits, the flies that are infected with the parasitic wasps will actively seek out otherwise harmful levels of alcohol that has the effect of killing off the wasps in their system. They can also identify the wasps by sight, and when they see them, they will lay their eggs on more alcoholic food sources in (presumably) an effort to protect their offspring from being infected in the future. Todd Schlenke, PhD, biology professor at Reed College, will talk about his studies that seem to show fruit flies self medicating and discuss how alcohol might be used as medication in humans as well.
 


Science on Tap at the Kiggins is produced in partnership with  Campus Sig-Horz Vancouver

Tuesday, January 6, 2015, in Portland

Parasites: A Global Health Problem

Parasites constitute a global health problem of unimaginable magnitude. Two out of three people worldwide are afflicted with a parasitic disease, and most people who harbor parasites actually are afflicted with a multiplicity of diseases. The organisms that are considered traditional parasites are either protozoa, worms, or insects, although viruses, bacteria, and fungi also meet the classic definition of a parasite. At this Science on Tap, Dr. Buddy Ullman, parasitologist at OHSU, will take a somewhat irreverent tour of the major time-honored parasites and describe where they live, how they reproduce, and what effect they have on humans. Warning: this talk will be both gross and fascinating!

Wednesday, December 10, 2014, in Vancouver

The Secrets of Orion: The Birthplace of Stars

Orion is probably one of the best known constellations in the winter sky, but how many people know what kinds of astronomical features are contained within its familiar shape? Within this relatively new constellation there are young planetary systems, giant and supergiant stars, and enormous hydrogen clouds where new stars are being born. At this Science on Tap, hear from astronomers Pat Hanrahan and Doug McCarty about the life cycle of stars, see some of the latest Hubble Space Telescope images, and find out which secrets of Orion that you can see with the naked eye.

This event will feature two speakers:
Doug McCarty, Professor of Astronomy with the Science Integration Institute and past Planetarium Director and Astronomy Instructor, at Mount Hood Community College,

Pat Hanrahan, current Planetarium Director and Astronomy Instructor at Mount Hood Community College.
 


Science on Tap at the Kiggins is produced in partnership with  Campus Sig-Horz Vancouver

Tuesday, December 2, 2014, in Portland

Laser Beams and Landslides

From flying machines to computers to lasers to lidar, technology has revolutionized the study of earth science. That’s good news for Oregon, where scientists at the Department of Geology and Mineral Industries are using lidar to learn more than ever before about the widespread geologic hazard of landslides. Engineering Geologist Bill Burns will talk about the destructive power of landslides, risks for Oregon’s people, places, property – even our beer – and how lidar is making a difference.

Wednesday, November 12, 2014, in Vancouver

Music to Your Ears? Brains, Sound, and How to Save Your Hearing

Hearing is one of our basic senses – it helps us communicate and to perceive the world around us — but we shouldn’t take it for granted. Approximately 15 percent of Americans between the ages of 20 and 69 (about 26 million Americans) have some kind of noise-induced hearing loss, and much of that loss could have been prevented with a few simple precautions. At this Science on Tap, Dr. Allison Coffin, assistant professor in the neuroscience department at Washington State University Vancouver will talk about the mechanical and neurological process of how we hear and how we can protect our ears. She will also be joined on stage by the band KMX for some live music and demonstrations. Come ready to listen and learn…and maybe dance!
 


Science on Tap at the Kiggins is produced in partnership with  Campus Sig-Horz Vancouver

Tuesday, November 4, 2014, in Portland

Digital Communication: Cell Phones, Deep Space, and HDTV

We’re told that digital is better than analog, but have you ever wondered why your cell phone sometimes drops calls? Mathematician Greg Landweber studies applications of error correcting codes, that is, ways of encoding digital information so that garbled signals can still be decoded. He will introduce several examples of error detection and correction, as well as discuss the limits of these codes. Not a math person? Never fear! Using logic, hands-on activities, and a geometrical decoding machine of his own design, Landweber will explain how and why digital communication works.
 


Science on Tap at the Kiggins is produced in partnership with  Campus Sig-Horz Vancouver

Tuesday, October 14, 2014, in Portland

Special Event at the Alberta Rose Theatre! Molecules: The Elements and the Architecture of Everything

Everything physical is made up of the elements and the infinite variety of molecules they form when they combine with each other. The new book Molecules: The Elements and the Architecture of Everything explores hundreds of the most interesting, unusual, and surprising chemical bonds, from rocks to ropes, and painkillers to pigments. At this special Science on Tap, Theodore Gray, author, and co-founder of Wolfram Research, Inc., will tell fascinating stories, show stunning photography, and have live on-stage demonstrations in this exploration of some of the most interesting, essential, useful, and beautiful chemical structures that make up every material in the world.

Molecules is the long-awaited sequel to Theodore Gray’s bestselling book The Elements: A Visual Exploration of Every Known Atom in the Universe. Gray is also the author of Gray Matter, a long-running Popular Science column, where he chronicled lots of experiments, including several where he set himself and other things on fire.

Wednesday, October 8, 2014, in Vancouver

Out of the Dark: Spiders and Bats

This Science on Tap will feature two speakers:

Arachnophilia: Fun Facts About Spiders and Their Kin
Myths abound about spiders and their relatives (known as arachnids), and fears persist about their perceived danger to people. But these animals should inspire fascination, not fear! Dr. Susan Masta, an Associate Professor in the Biology Department at Portland State University, is studying the diversification of arachnids. She will discuss and answer questions on the biology of several common arachnids in the Pacific Northwest, and will help dispel some of the myths that exist surrounding spiders and their kin. Join us and get hooked on these amazing creatures!

 

Debunking Bats’ Bad Rap
What animal is blind, gets tangled in your hair, and hangs out in belfries? Whatever it is, it’s not bat! Many people still believe these myths about bats even though there has been an increased effort by conservationists, researchers and animal lovers to educate the public about these fascinating and ecologically important creatures. Dr. Christine Portfors, a Professor in the School of Biological Sciences at Washington State University Vancouver, is studying the brains of bats. She will discuss and answer questions on the biology and neuroscience of bats, and will help dispel some of the myths about bats. Join us and learn about these fascinating animals.
 


Science on Tap at the Kiggins is produced in partnership with  Campus Sig-Horz Vancouver

Tuesday, October 7, 2014, in Portland

Mega Quake: The Cascadia Subduction Zone and How to Prepare for The Big One

The entire Pacific Northwest is sitting on a geologic time bomb known as the Cascadia Subduction Zone. When this fault line slips we could experience earthquakes and devastation as bad as Japan suffered in 2011, and coastal communities could have as few as 20 minutes before a tsunami rushes ashore. Yes, that’s WHEN it goes, not IF.

Yet it’s not all doom and gloom. Scientists and engineers are working to prepare our communities and infrastructure to withstand such devastation. Yumei Wang, geotechnical engineer, Geohazards Team Leader from the Oregon Department of Geology and Mineral Industries (DOGAMI), will talk about what is in store for the Pacific Northwest and how cities are preparing. We’ll also be joined by a disaster preparedness expert from the Red Cross who will give practical ideas for how to prepare yourself and your family.

Wednesday, September 10, 2014, in Vancouver

You and Your Racist Brain: The Neuroscience of Prejudice

People have the tendency to characterize other people who do not share the same traits as somehow different. But why do some people find such differences repulsive to the point that they exhibit extreme prejudice? Dr. Larry Sherman, a senior scientist in the Division of Neuroscience at Oregon Health & Science University (OHSU) will explore the neuroscience behind prejudice and racism. He will discuss the so-called “cross-race effect” and how the brain can overcome this reaction, raising intriguing possibilities about how prejudice and racism can be reversed.

Accompanying Sherman will be members of the cast of the musical “Parade,” a theatrical telling of the story of the murder of Mary Phagan and the trial of Leo Frank.

Saturday July 26, 2014

Star Party at Silcox Hut

Come spend the night at Silcox Hut for a special Star Party! Treat yourself to an unobstructed view of the a moonless sky from 7,000 feet with astronomy expert Alex Cason. Staying at Silcox is enough of a treat all by itself, but the night sky from there will be truly fantastic. 

For more info on this event, click here.

Wednesday, July 9, 2014

Nerd Nite Vancouver #6 – Try This at Home: Science Experiments Using Stuff You Already Own

This event featured Graduate students Katie Payne, Justin Dunlap, and Elliot Mylott from PSU’s Science Outreach Society showing how to do all kinds of cool science experiments at home.

For more information on this event, click here.

Tuesday, July 1, 2014

Nerd Nite Portland #17 – Thinky and the Brain: Mental Processes in Humans and Animals

This Nerd Nite featured two speakers.
Hedonists vs. Puritans: The Balance in Your Brain, with Dr. Courtney Takahashi, a neurologist at OHSU
Does Your Dog Feel Guilt? Thinking Realistically About Animal Emotions, with Dr. Tim Hackenberg, psychology professor at Reed College.

For more information on this event, click here.

Tuesday, June 3, 2014

Nerd Nite Portland #16 – What Can Garbage Do For Us?

This event, held in partnership with Metro, featured Prof. Marco J. Castaldi from City College, City University of New York, a national expert on different ways to get more out of the waste we generate.

For more information on this event, click here.

 

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Tuesday, April 1, 2014

Nerd Nite Portland #14 – Waterborne Wonders: Aquatic Insects and Amphibians of the Pacific Northwest

This event featured two speakers from Volcano Lands Nature Tours.
 
The Secret Lives of Stream Bugs with Laura McMullen, PhD, and
Some Like it Cool and Damp: Amphibians of the Northwest by Ivan Phillipsen, PhD
 
For more information on this event, click here.

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