Solar Day was held on the roof of the parking garage in
"This is just another alternative to get (children's) minds going," Peyers said while tending a small iron skillet of popcorn cooking under a massive solar magnifier. "It could be their future. And hey, it's science. That's the whole point."
Two child-size swimming pools were equipped with solar fountains that turned off and on when a child covered and uncovered the corresponding solar panel. Children transformed pizza boxes into miniature solar ovens to toast nachos. A volunteer gave visitors rides in his solar-powerd golf cart, while children got behind the wheel in a miniature solar-powered car.
"I have a license but I left it at home," said Drohan, skipping to the car to take it for a spin.
During Bertsch's turn, she handed a small wood block to her dad
"Isn't this a great thing for a kid to have? Now she wants to go home and get a magnifying glass to try different projects," he said.
In one corner of the event, Peyers' son Matt Peyers was boiling hot dogs in a solar cooker the two built together. They used a satellite dish found in a barn and covered it in sheets of mylar to reflect the sun's rays into a narrow point. A small black pot hung from a crossbeam right at that point, and the water was bubbling away.
"Throughout the day, we've been having to rotate it to follow the sun. This morning it was facing over there," Matt Peyers said, pointing east.
There were also vendors selling solar panels for home use and a volunteer from the
"Everyone has heard of a solar flare, but now you can see it,"
Both volunteers were quick to inform visitors that looking directly at the sun without this kind of special equipment will severely damage the eyes and cause permanent injury.
Peyers was pleased at the turnout, and happy that the museum allowed him to host the solar event for the second time.
"I'm glad they take me on, so I can keep encouraging imagination and motivation for kids," said Preyer.
(c)2014 the Lodi News-Sentinel (Lodi, Calif.)
Visit the Lodi News-Sentinel (Lodi, Calif.) at www.lodinews.com
Distributed by MCT Information Services