As PZ Myers reminds us, it is time to start planning for the Twin Cities Home Schooling Science Fair at Har Mar Mall, in Roseville, Minnesota.
Before we go any further, I want you to understand that Roseville is not a bastion of crazy creationist yahoos. In fact, the Roseville School District, where my daughter is a Student of the Month most months, is a good district, and as far as I know, mostly teaches good science and does only the average amount of Christianity bending, for a public school system.
Anyway, some of you will remember last year, when crazy things happened in relation to the science fair. I was posting on it, and PZ was posting on it. I visited the fair and took some pictures, and I noted in my post that there were very few science fair projects. The science fair organizers lied about how many projects were up. They also got very bent out of shape that I had taken some pictures, and took down their own pictures of that year's fair in a hissy fit, noting on the web site that:
Randomly Selected Pictures Have Been Removed Because Some Sick Atheist Used Them To Demean Kids -- Even Those Who Disagree With Creation Ought To Be Disgusted With Those Tactics!
That would be me.
The real reason, I think, that they took down the photos is that my claim that there were not many projects could not be refuted with their photographic evidence, and/or their claim that there were many projects could not be supported by any evidence. That is because I was telling the truth and they were telling a lie.
Now, if you go to the part of their site (don't worry, the links are all below) where you get instructions on how to make a science fair project, you see another instance of a reaction by the organizers to my sick atheistic activities.
Under Exhibit Guidelines, item 4, they used to say this:
4. Have student's name, project name, age and grade on a separate slip of paper to be handed in to fair officials when checking in.
Now, they say this:
4. CHANGE: DUE TO OCCASIONAL ACTIONS BY OPPONENTS OF CREATION, DO NOT PUT PUT ANY IDENTIFYING INFORMATION ON THE POSTER. Have student's name, project name, age and grade on a separate slip of paper to be handed in to fair officials when checking in.
That would be me.
I keep saying "that would be me" but really, while I am the agent of change in these particular cases, it is really a much larger community of people who find this "science" fair annoying and like to call what it is, write about it, maybe even show up and talk about science to the kids, that sort of thing. This has been going on for a few years, and I'm a latecomer to it. Somehow, though, my blog posts and photographs struck a chord with them last year.
It happens that Har Mar is one of the shopping locales that i frequent. There is a great Barns and Noble there. There used to be a giant Bible Bookstore there too, but it closed. I guess real bookstores do better than Bible bookstores.
So, it will be a simple matter for me to stop by this year and document the science fair. I'll count the number of exhibits, and I'll let you know what kinds of topics were covered, and so on. Since I don't usually carry a camera around with me, I doubt I'll be taking pictures.
The scheduling details for this year's fair are as follows:
2008 Home School Science Fair
February 16 & 17, 2008
Har Mar Mall, Snelling & County Road B
My earlier posts, from last year, on this event have been moved to this blog and are located just upstream from where you are now.
Use the navigation at the top of this blog post to page back to them if you'd like to read them.