Museum of Science and Industry

Interviews for Chinese television, tours of fairy castles, dinners with furniture store magnates (I shared a table with Walter E. Smithe and his wife last week!) - it's safe to say that there is nothing typical about my days here at MSI. It's a constant adventure and there are surprises around every corner. But there are definitely some aspects of life here that offer some stability. The coal mine whistle toots every morning to signal the arrival of the first guests. The Henry Crown Space Center smells amazing as bakers prepare the daily goodies. And the Live Science Experiences wow the guests everyday. 

These demonstrations have definitely become some of my favorite parts of my daily routine. They range from making slime to dissecting an eye to riding a Segway to a show about poop. Regardless of the theme of my day, I do my best to catch at least one explosion, reaction, balcony drop or ice-cream freezing (my rationale, for example: "Tiny Day" -> small -> atom -> molecule -> gas -> explosive -> "Bangs, Flashes, and Fire" demonstration. Makes sense to me!) While I love my behind-the-scenes VIP access, it's fun to share these shows with the general visitors.

I'm a sucker for a good explosion (what can I say, I'm a guy) so I've attended (and helped with) a good number of the "Pumpkin Pyrotechnics" and "Bangs, Flashes and Fire" shows. And what's more, I love documenting said explosions. So, without further ado, I present:

"Great Balls of Fire: A Live Science Retrospective"

 Andy puffing some Lycopodium powder

 Harshish and his sodium-flamed Jack-o-Lantern



Blaire (witch) in action

 Are you starting to understand there the name "Bangs, Flashes and Fire" comes from?


PS: The opening photo is of me igniting a balloon filled with oxygen and hydrogen. In related news, my eyebrows should grow back in 4-6 weeks.

  • Readers' Comments (1)
November 03, 2011

I love this stuff. So glad youare curious and sharing it with all who come to see and those who follow on Facebook. Thanks!

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kevin byrne

A digital marketing analyst from Chicago, Kevin is living inside the largest science museum in the Western Hemisphere for 30 days.

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