Have you ever wondered what makes the tides rise and fall? Did you know the Schuylkill River is tidal? Does the ebb and flow of the oceans boggle your mind while you’re at the beach? Do you suddenly realize that your once dry blanket is being threatened by waves? Can you believe that the moon, a satellite hundreds of thousands of miles from Earth, plays a large role in the behavior of the tides? Fairmount Water Works Interpretive Center’s (FWWIC) free August educational program teaches families the science of the tides.
Science Saturdays are free and open to the public on August 6, 13, 20 and 27 from 2 – 4 p.m. at half hour intervals. The Fairmount Water Works Interpretive Center is located at 640 Waterworks Drive in Philadelphia. For information call 215-685-0723.
Families will create their own moon phase calendar through interactive experiments by FWWIC educators at the Interpretive Center’s state-of-the-art lab. Explore the powerful force of the moon and its effect on water in a fun, light-hearted atmosphere that will open your eyes to the intriguing interaction of the Earth’s oceans and the Moon.
In addition to Science Saturdays, FWWIC’s Sunday Movie Matinee will screen “Rango” each Sunday in August at 1:30 and 3:30 p.m. in the Interpretive Center’s nicely cooled underground theater. This 2011 American computer-animated Western comedy features the voices of Johnny Depp and Isla Fisher. The film tells the tale of a pet chameleon (Depp) who finds himself in the water-deprived town of “Dirt” after his terrarium falls from his owner’s car; he ultimately saves the day after a series of unfortunate and comical events. Come enjoy this 107-minute film for free with friends and family for laughs, life lessons and a break from the heat.
The Fairmount Water Works, the ideal location to learn more about the life in the river, was constructed in 1812 to pump water from the Schuylkill River. Almost from the day the waterwheels began turning, the graceful neoclassical buildings and beautiful grounds made the place an international tourist attraction renowned for melding nature and technology.
Today the Fairmount Water Works Interpretive Center is the Delaware River Basin’s watershed education hub, offering visitors information about the impact of water on their daily lives and how they in turn impact their water supplies. Located off Kelly Drive in Philadelphia’s East Fairmount Park, the Interpretive Center features a variety of hands-on, highly interactive exhibits including a live view of the Fairmount Dam fishway and a flyover of the Schuylkill River watershed. For more information, visit www.fairmountwaterworks.com.