York ‘s Community Festival offers family fun, learning and more

Have you ever wanted to see telescopic photographs of Saturn’s rings or the elusive red spot on the distant planet Jupiter? How about learning about Caribbean dance and steel pan music? Do dreams of learning how to sing gospel music inspire you? How about hearing about healthy relationships in teens from leading-edge psychologists? All this and more will be available to the general public on Saturday, May 9, when York University’s Keele and Glendon campuses throw open their doors for a full day community festival marking York’s 50th anniversary.

This free public event will appeal to all ages, with activities designed to engage and excite members of York’s community and its surrounding neighbourhoods. From noon to 5pm, York Community Festival events will include family-oriented activities, arts and crafts, exhibits and displays, international food, talks and tours. The program includes a number of signature events including Science Rendezvous and activities hosted by Tennis Canada. Starting at 5pm on the outdoor main stage at the Keele campus will be evening performances by local and renowned performers, and a special, surprise appearance by a Juno Award-winning R & B artist Jully Black. The day’s activities will be capped by a fireworks finale on the Keele campus at 10:15pm.

Right: Citytv "Breakfast Televsion" personalities Dina Pugliese and Frank Ferragine will be hosts for the evening main stage event at York’s Keele campus

The York Community Festival runs rain on shine and every event is free. For more information and a full festival program, visit the York U50 Community Festival Web site. Here’s just a sampling of some of the many activities planned for the York Community Festival and Science Rendezvous:

Keele campus events  

About Science Rendezvous

Science Rendezvous opens up the world of innovation and discovery so the public can take part. Over 600 volunteers and leaders in science and technology, representing award-winning Canadian institutions and organizations across the Greater Toronto Area, open their doors, offering an engaging experience and a look at world-class research. From the serious to the fun and quirky, free events and lab tours take place on campuses across the region and in a variety of outdoor and indoor venues, offering adults, teens and children a day of fun and exploration.

The festival activities fall into four primary event categories: INVENTour; Café Scientifque; Sipping Science; and Malls of Science. Click here for specific programming details, locations and updates.

GTA partners in Science Rendezvous are: The Hospital for Sick Children, Let’s Talk Science, Mount Sinai – Samuel Lunenfeld Research, Ontario Science Centre, Ryerson University, Scientists in School, Sci-Tech Ontario, Treehouse Group, University of Ontario Institute of Technology, University of Toronto, Visions of Science, York University.

Astronomy Photo Exhibit
12 to 5pm

The York University Astronomical Observatory will be featuring photos taken through their telescopes to allow anyone a glimpse of what is new and exciting in the night sky. The exhibit will include photos of traditional deep sky wonders (galaxies) to local highlights (the moon, planets of the solar system), to new vistas (comets, supernovas). This event is part of Science Rendezvous.

“Pet” a Comet
12 to 5pm

Want to know what’s in a comet? Learn about the life of comet/meterorites and the characteristics of these celestial objects. Feel free to pet one and hear how much information they can reveal about our own solar system. This event is part of Science Rendezvous.

York University Greenhouse Open House
12 to 5pm

Try your hand at plant dissections and see how different plant root systems develop and spread through soil in search for water. See all the budding research in the York University Greenhouse. This event is part of Science Rendezvous.

Clara Thomas Archives & Special Collections Exhibit
12 to 5pm

On March 26, 1959, the York University Act, passed by the government of Ontario, received Royal Assent. An exhibit commemorating the passage of the act, including originals and reproductions of archival photographs, architectural drawings, written documents and artifacts will be on display. The exhibit will provide a visual overview of the history and accomplishments of York University. This exhibit on campus will be held in tandem with an exhibit at The Legislative Assembly of Ontario and with the virtual exhibit on the York Libraries Web site.

Emergency Preparedness
12 to 5pm

To mark Emergency Preparedness Week, experts from York’s Office of Emergency Preparedness will be onsite. Learn how to get personally prepared for emergency situations through a three-step plan; pick-up the 72-Hour Family Preparedness Guide and a children’s activity book from the Government of Canada; and have a look at a sample family emergency kit. This is one booth that you can’t afford to miss.

Light Pollution Awareness
12 to 5pm

Light pollution is a growing problem for everyone in a variety of ways. Learn about some of the issues and solutions that are simple, effective and very inexpensive. This event is part of Science Rendezvous.

Energy Efficient Products & Services – Clean Air Foundation
12 to 5pm

Displays about recycling, energy efficient programs and rebates.Learn how to take advantage of energy rebates for various products and services. This event is part of Science Rendezvous.

Happy Birthday York
12 to 5pm

Join staff of the York University Foundation as they host a children’s birthday party to celebrate York University’s 50th birthday. Children will be entertained with balloon animals, magic shows and more!

Right: The York Observatory will host a photo exhibit of images taken of planets through the telescope

Scale model of the solar system
12 to 5pm

One of the best ways to convey the enormous scale of the universe in which we live is by means of a scale model of the solar system. Such a model is being constructed on York’s Keele campus, in cooperation with the Toronto Centre of the Royal Astronomical Society of Canada, in celebration of York’s 50th anniversary and of the International Year of Astronomy 2009. The model will depict the true relative sizes of the sun (here, six inches in diameter), the planets (visible to the naked eye) and the distances between them (two-thirds of a kilometre from the sun to Pluto). A photo exhibit of images to be included in the model will be on display during the festival.

Teen Dating, Teen Thinking and More
 5 to 6pm

Psychology researchers at the LaMarsh Research Centre at York University are involved in many research projects on the experiences of Canadian youth. Join them to talk about teen dating and teen thinking. When do teens really start to date, and what do healthy dating relationships look like? Do teens really take unnecessary risks and make poor decisions? Using interactive electronics, the researchers will talk about their research, show they conduct their research and demonstrate some "real time" data collection.

Solar Panel Exhibit
12 to 5pm

Ever seen a solar panel up close? Come ask an expert about this alternative energy source. This event is part of Science Rendezvous.

Mars Rover Team Demonstration
12 to 5pm

Come and meet the York University Rover Team’s two prototypes of Mars Rovers. The Rovers are the York University Rover Team’s protoypes created for the annual International University Rover Challenge hosted by The Mars Society.

The competition encourages university students to design, innovate and engineer remote-controlled Mars rover prototypes that could be considered the next generation in interplanetary robotic technology. Last year the award-winning team was the sole entrant representing Canada, placing third! The team will demonstrate the rovers’ capabilities around Keele campus. This event is part of Science Rendezvous.

York Sport & Recreation
12:30 to 5:30pm

Activities include a showcase of friendly basketball competition between the York University men’s basketball team and members of the York University Strength Training & Mentorship program (YUSTMP). Meet members of the Toronto Argonauts, who will be on hand all day. The half-time show will include: a hip hop dance showcase; a tug of war where spectators compete against the York football team; and a foul shot competition between the York Lions’ Mascots and the Toronto Raptors’ Mascot. Other activities include fit breaks, skill showcases and interactive demonstrations in salsa, bellydancing, muay thai and tai chi. Bench press world champion Alex Martel will demonstrate bench press power lifting, and tours and equipment orientations, and a vertical jump competition will take place in the Tait McKenzie Fitness Centre. Basketball game 3 pm; half-time show 4 pm; Showcases and interactive demonstrations 12:30 to 3 pm.

Tennis Canada
12 to 5pm

As part of its continued commitment to provide healthy activities for the Jane/Finch community, Tennis Canada will be hosting a day of fun filled tennis activities. Participants will be given the opportunity to learn to play tennis with the help of local coaches, do fitness testing and participate in a tour of the world-class Rexall Centre. The highlight of the tour is a chance to get your picture taken on centre court and visit the championship locker room where stars such as Roger Federer and Serena Williams have prepared for Rogers Cup.

World Without Water
12 to 5pm

This thought-provoking public art exhibit focuses water and our relationship with water. The exhibit is interactive and the hot and cold water taps control a flow of water that is connected to random images that become pieces in a multimedia game.

Nursing Resource Centre
Tours start at 12:30pm

Come and tour the Nursing Resource Centre (NRC), including the Nursing Skills Lab, a simulated hospital environment that has been created to support nursing students with their clinical skill development. The NRC houses medical surgical beds, and a pediatric unit, an isolation room and a birthing suite and is equipped with "Sim Man" mannequins, adult mannequins with heart/lung sound capability, a birthing mannequin "Noelle", a "Sim Baby" mannequin, paediatric mannequins, a variety of neonate mannequins, a collection of anatomical training models, virtual intravenous and the necessary medical equipment and supplies, to provide students’ with an amazing environment for their on-campus clinical learning. Tours start at 12:30pm and run each hour at 1:30, 2:30 and 3:30pm.

Fine Arts Fun
From 1:30pm

Unleash the performer in you. Participate in a workshop in theatre, dance, or expressive movement for the stage; try your hand at playing the Caribbean steel pans; and participate in a vocal workshop in gospel music. If being in the audience is more your style, join us to view student-made films from the Cinesiege Competition and Festival. Physical theatre workshops 1:30 and 3:30pm, dance and Caribbean pans workshop 1:30pm; vocal workshop in gospel music 3:30pm; films are offered as continuous showing from 2:30 to 5 pm.

Black Creek Water Walk & Exhibit

The Black Creek Storytelling Parade is a performance that follows the route of storm water from York’s Keele campus to the banks of Black Creek. The parade will include storytellers in costume, music and art.

Right: Jully Black, Juno Award-winning R & B artist will take to the main stage at 9pm

Café Scientifique
3 to 5pm

Participate in a discussion with leading scientists and researchers as they explore the topics of Stem Cells and Regenerative Medicine and Personalized Medicine: Where are we now and where can we get to? Brought to you by the Canadian Institutes of Health Research, The Gairdner Foundation and York’s Faculty of Science & Engineering. Panel of experts includes Andras Nagy, Samuel Lunenfeld Research Institute, Mt. Sinai Hospital; Professor Ronald Pearlman, Faculty of Science & Engineering, York University; and David Brener, Pfizer Inc. The discussion will be moderated by York Professor Tara Haas, School of Kinesiology & Health Science, Faculty of Health. This event is part of Science Rendezvous.

Main Stage Program
5 to 10:30pm

Join emcees Dina Pugliese and Frank Ferragine, York alumni and Citytv "Breakfast Television" hosts, as they celebrate York University in grand style with a variety of musicians, dancers and performers.

Time Performer
5:30pm Oakdale Steel Drum Pan Band
6:10pm Rated Inc. and Black Ice Dance Crews
7pm Affinity – York’s Battle of the Band winner
7:40pm God Made Me Funky
8:20pm Samba Squad
9pm Juno Award-winning artist Jully Black

There will be a fireworks finale at 10:15pm.

Glendon campus events  

Lecture by Christopher Dewdney
2 to 3:30pm

A lecture by Soul of the World author and Glendon Writer-on-the-Grounds Christopher Dewdney (left), followed by a poetic walking tour of Glendon’s campus.

Glendon Alumni in Print
2:30 to 4:30pm

Among Glendon’s graduates are many noted authors, journalists and filmmakers. A listing of Glendon alumni who have produced research, scholarly and creative works has been created and is available in English and French. The Glendon Alumni in Print Web site will be made available in the Leslie Frost Library at the Glendon campus and hard copies of some of the major works will be on display.

A Garden Reception
3:30 to 4:30pm

A garden reception featuring the planting of the White Rose of York in Glendon’s Bruce Bryden Rose Garden and the planting of 50 trees in honour of York’s first 50 years.

A Journey Through Time
4:30 to 6:30pm

A journey through time showcasing the poetry of the world’s romance languages. Poetry readings in Italian, French, Spanish, Provençal, Catalan and Iberic with Professors Hédi Bouraoui, Salvador Alanis, Margarita Feliciano, Giovanna Patriarca, Vincenzo Pietropaolo, Elio Costa, Sergio Villani, Marie-Thérèse Chaput, Shandin Melgar Foraster, Gloria Del Monte and Roberto Perin.

 For more information, visit the York U50 Community Festival Web site.