Public invited to ‘spooktacular’ Halloween fundraiser for science outreach

LOGAN – Mad scientists, ghoulish mutants and three floors of optical illusions, weird science and scary thrills await Cache Valley residents Friday, Oct. 28, on the Utah State University campus.USU’s chapter of the Society of Physics Students presents “Haunted Labs: The Sequel” from 7 p.m.-midnight in the Science Engineering Research “SER” Building. The public is invited. Admission is $7 per person or $20 per family. USU students pay $5 with a USU ID.”This is probably the biggest haunted house in Cache Valley – or at least the biggest haunted laboratory,” says Brian Tracy, president of USU’s SPS chapter. “We’ve turned our labs and classrooms into a daunting maze of fear and we have some ‘ginormous’ physics toys to share.”Tracy says the event features a huge outdoor Tesla coil – a high frequency electrical transformer – and a chilling bed of nails demonstration.”Our thrills and frights are based on scientific principles but they’re anything but boring,” he says. “This year, student chemists from USU’s chapter of the American Chemical Society will also be helping us out with experiments of terror.”The annual event funds year-round science outreach activities conducted by the USU SPS chapter for K-12 students throughout Cache Valley.”Last year, we led activities with more than 10,000 youngsters,” Tracy says. “We have a similar schedule this year.”Outreach is a key chapter requirement for membership in the national society, he says. USU’s chapter has been named an “Outstanding Chapter” by the SPS national office for several years in a row.”Students in physics and other science classes spend a lot of time learning from textbooks and that’s important,” Tracy says. “But books are no substitute for hands-on activities and the creativity and problem-solving skills that are built from trying experiments on your own. That’s the kind of experiences we’re trying to give kids in our community with our outreach programs.”Parking for Haunted Labs is available in surface lots near the Performance Hall at 1090 E. 675 North on the USU campus. The SER building is southwest of the Performance Hall. To view a campus map, visit and select “Science Engineering Research” from the pull-down Building Index menu.Haunted Labs is recommended for children age 10 and older. For more information, contact or visit “Utah State University Society of Physics Students” on Facebook.

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