Activities for kids of all ages!

Everyone is invited to join us for fascinating activities, hands-on exhibits, and entertaining presentations showcasing science, technology, engineering, and mathematics that adds up to a day of fun and learning.

Saturday, Nov. 19, 2016
10 a.m.–4 p.m., Coffman Memorial Union

This event is free and open to the public. There is no pre-registration, but check-in is required upon arrival to the event.

This year’s event includes:

  • Interactive stage shows by Physics Force and Energy and U!
  • Discover the solar system in 3D in the ExploraDome!
  • Make paper!
  • Control robots!
  • See hidden microworlds!
  • And much more!

Download materials:

Free backpacks!

UMN-CSE drawstring backpacks will be handed out to the first 1,000 kids in attendance (kids must be present to receive a backpack, available only while supplies last).

Show times and ticketing procedure

Energy and U showtimes is 11:30 a.m. and Physics Force showtimes are noon and 2 p.m.

  • Free tickets are limited and offered on a first-come, first-served basis after check-in.
  • To give as many visitors as possible a chance to see a show, you are eligible for either “Energy and U” or “Physics Force” tickets, but not both.
  • If you are a ticket holder, you must arrive at the show at least 5 minutes before showtime, or you will forfeit your seat.
  • If you cannot obtain a show ticket, you may elect to “rush” a show by waiting in line outside the show room until directed by volunteer staff to take a seat as they become available. Visitors “rushing” a show are not guaranteed a seat.

The ExploraDome will be presenting shows regularly throughout the event. Free tickets are limited, offered on a first-come, first-served basis, and can be picked up at the Bell Museum’s ExploraDome exhibit.

Schedule of events

Ticketed events

(See ticketing procedure above)

“Energy and U” (Note Smith Hall location)
(11:30 a.m.)
Presented by the University of Minnesota Department of Chemistry
Location: Smith Hall, Room 100

Everybody is talking about energy: What is it? Where do I get it? Can I convert it? Where can I put it? What happens when I let it out? This “Energy and U” show literally blows the lid off these questions and highlights the many science and technology challenges that energy presents. Join the fun! Learn about energy with demonstrations that include screaming gummy bears, loud explosions, bright flashes, and flames!

“Physics Force”
(Noon and 2 p.m.)
Presented by the University of Minnesota School of Physics and Astronomy
Location: Coffman Theater

Can air pressure crush a 55-gallon steel drum? Can a ping-pong ball blast its way through three cans? Are two teams of Minnesota kids stronger than air pressure? Yes, physics is fun! If that sounds unusual to you, come see the always-popular Physics Circus show to see for yourself! There will be no tricks—just physics and skill (we hope!).

(show times TBD)
Location: Coffman Memorial Union, Great Hall
The ExploraDome allows visitors to discover the wonders of the night sky and journey through a 3D exploration of the solar system, galaxy, and Universe. Inside the dome, each audience can decide what to see and where to fly.

View photos from last year’s Fun Fair.

2015 Math & Science Family Fun Fair

Dining options in Coffman Memorial Union

Starbucks (open 9 a.m.–4 p.m.)
Gopher Express (open 9 a.m.–5 p.m.)
Goldy’s Gameroom (open 10 a.m.–Midnight)
Chick Fil A in Minnesota Marketplace (open 11:30 a.m.–2 p.m.)
Topios Pizza in Minnesota Marketplace (open 11:30 a.m.–2 p.m.)
GrabNGo in Minnesota Marketplace (open 11:30 a.m.–2 p.m.)

This event is sponsored by the University of Minnesota College of Science and Engineering K-12 Outreach Programs.

For more information, email CSE Outreach at