STEMfest features hundreds of hands-on activities

Jamarcus Kwaza, 13, uses an otoscope at STEM Fest.
Jamarcus Kwaza, 13, uses an otoscope at STEM Fest.

DeKALB – Budding scientists and engineers will have their hands full Oct. 21 with the hundreds of hands-on exhibits presented during Northern Illinois University's annual STEMfest.

Popular activities such as the hands-on laser lab, bowling ball pendulum and Haunted Physics Lab will be back on display at the Midwest's premier festival for celebrating science, technology, engineering and math.

New exhibits will include a crime-scene booth, where attendees can learn about innovations in forensic science.

The event is from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. at the Convocation Center, 1525 W. Lincoln Highway.

A list of activities and presenters is available on the NIU STEMfest website.

Pati Sievert, director of NIU STEM Outreach, said in a news release that she loves the excitement and wonder each display elicits in children.

“Many of the exhibits offer activities for multiple ages,” Sievert said in the release. “While a child checks out the driver’s seat and controls of the Formula One racer, his older sibling could be chatting with the NIU student-builders about opportunities at NIU.”

STEMfest is made possible through the collaboration of NIU's P-20 Center, STEM student groups and a number of regional organizations. Hundreds of NIU student volunteers also donate their time to make the annual event possible.

The event is free with no advance registration required. Free parking will also be available. Fro information call 815-753-1272, or email

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