Full S.T.E.A.M Ahead: Celebration of science, technology, engineering, math underway

The National Park Service presented “Birds, Bugs & Bats,” a bird walk at the Tavasci Marsh in Clarkdale during one of the the Verde Valley SciTech Festival 2017 programs. VVN/Vyto Starinskas

The National Park Service presented “Birds, Bugs & Bats,” a bird walk at the Tavasci Marsh in Clarkdale during one of the the Verde Valley SciTech Festival 2017 programs. VVN/Vyto Starinskas

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The 2017 Verde Valley SciTech Festival celebrates science, technology, engineering, and math. (VVN/Vyto Starinskas)

COTTONWOD – The 2017 Verde Valley SciTech Festival is Full S.T.E.A.M Ahead through March 3.

The celebration of science, technology, engineering, and math (STEM) kicked off Feb. 23 at Oak Creek School in Cornville where students proudly presented their science projects.

“Projects reflect opportunities for jobs and careers focusing on Science, Technology, Engineering and Math. The Verde Valley SciTech Committee last year added arts and made STEM into STEAM. School Principal Christine Griffin is a member of the team that promotes STEAM throughout the Verde Valley and Sedona,” said former Cottonwood Mayor Diane Joens.

The event first arrived in the Verde Valley in 2014 through the efforts Joens, Cottonwood Administrative Services General Manager Rudy Rodriguez, and a slew of other businesses and organizations with a STEM influence.

This year program has grown in some areas and shrunk in others, said Rodriquez.

“The Town of Camp Verde and Camp Verde Schools were not able to coordinate the event this year, however they have been a wonderful backer and we hope to get them back next year,” he said.

“The Camp Verde library has been a great supporter and is still holding their own events. Sedona is coming along and we now have a Sedona City department participating as well as their library. Many homeschoolers are attending our events and we are encouraged and hope to have homeschoolers join us in the next year,” Rodriquez added.

This year, the National Parks Service as well as State Parks are involved. Schools, cities, local businesses and individuals are participating in the many events and programs all over the Verde Valley and Sedona.

“We hope to expand the program to bring more exciting events from all over Northern Arizona. We get calls from all over the country asking how our festival started and what we did to coordinate such a regional-wide event. The answer is cooperation between entities and a vision that puts our children’s education first,” said Rodriquez.

The festival is expected to grow in both events and attendance.

“We live in an exciting time and this is an exciting event that shows how technology touches each of our lives,” said Rodriguez.

The following is a roundup of Verde Valley SCITECH Festival – Full S.T.E.A.M. Ahead – activities and events scheduled throughout the Verde Valley to date:

February 28, 2017, 10 a.m. to noon – Sedona Water Reclamation Plant - Tour of City of Sedona Treatment Plant and Sedona Wetlands Preserve, 7500 West SR 89A, Sedona, AZ Milepost 366

March 1, 2017, 6 – 7:30 p.m. – Beaver Creek School – STEAM Extravaganza, 4810 East Beaver Creek Road, Rimrock, AZ

March 1, 2017, 8:30 a.m. - 2:30 p.m. – Mingus Union HS, City of Cottonwood, Yavapai County, Dead Horse Ranch State Park and many other participants, Connecting Kids and Careers through STEAM!, 1801 East Fir Street, Cottonwood AZ

March 1, 2017, Noon to 4 p.m. – Sedona Library – 3D Printer Demo at 12:30 p.m., Augmented reality, drop-in button making and more S.T.E.A.M. from 12 – 4 p.m., 3250 White Bear Road, Sedona AZ

March 1, 2017, 5:30 – 7:30 p.m. - Yavapai College – Verde Valley Campus – Free Screening of the Movie “Spare Parts”, 601 West Black Hills Drive, Clarkdale, AZ

March 2, 2017, 3-5 p.m. – Cottonwood Public Library – “Brainstorming @ the Library!”, 100 South 6th Street, Cottonwood, AZ

March 2, 2017, 5-6 p.m. - Cottonwood Oak Creek School District - STEM FAIR, 1 North Willard Street, Cottonwood, AZ

March 2, 2017, 5-6:30 p.m. - Verde Valley Montessori: Science Bone Connected to the Brain Bone, 215 S. Main St., Cottonwood, AZ

March 2, 2017, 5-6:30 p.m. – Big Park Community School Family STEM Night, 25 W. Saddlehorn Rd, Sedona, AZ

March 2, 2017, 5-6:30 p.m. - Yavapai College – Verde Valley Campus – Free performance featuring Anthony Mazzella, 601 West Black Hills Drive, Clarkdale, AZ

March 3, 2017, 10-11:30 a.m. & 1 – 2:30 p.m. – Camp Verde Community Library - Full S-T-E-A-M Ahead – The Sky is NOT the Limit, 130 Black Bridge Road, Camp Verde AZ

March 3, 2017, 5-8 p.m. - Yavapai College – Verde Valley Campus/Town of Clarkdale – VERDE VALLEY SCITECH EXPO, 601 West Black Hills Drive, Clarkdale, AZ

More events may be found at www.vvscitech.org or the Verde Valley SciTech Facebook Page.

The Verde Valley SciTech Festival is part of the Arizona SciTech, a state-wide celebration of science, technology, engineering and math. For more information, visit https://azscitech.com/.

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