Jefferson Lab plans ‘Celebration of Science’ Open House for May 1

NEWPORT NEWS, Va., Feb. 23, 2010 - The U.S. Department of Energy's Jefferson Lab is planning a public Open House for Saturday, May 1.

The Open House will give visitors the chance to see many of the tools and facilities at the laboratory and to talk with the scientists and technical staff who work on or run experiments. Visitors will also be able to learn about the lab's $310 million upgrade project underway at the laboratory that will allow staff and visiting scientists to continue pursuing leading-edge nuclear physics research (studying the nucleus of the atom).

In addition to highlighting the latest physics research and technology developments at Jefferson Lab, the event will include a variety of hands-on, science-education oriented activities for the young and young-at-heart, provided by Jefferson Lab, local universities and other organizations. Jefferson Lab staff will give the ever-popular Liquid Nitrogen Demonstration throughout the day.

The Open House is free of charge and will be held rain or shine. Free parking will be at Canon Virginia, located at 12,000 Canon Boulevard, in the Oyster Point area of Newport News.  Free charter buses will transport visitors between the Canon parking lot and Jefferson Lab (about a 4-minute bus ride) from 9 a.m. - 2 p.m. The last bus bringing visitors to Jefferson Lab will depart the Canon parking lot promptly at 2 p.m. From 2-4 p.m. the buses will only return visitors to the Canon parking lot. Several of the facilities are handicap accessible, and handicap and group parking will be available at Jefferson Lab.

Please visit the Open House webpage for details: http://www.jlab.org/openhouse/  . For additional information, and to reserve parking for handicap visitors and bus groups, contact Michelle Lechman, Jefferson Lab Public Affairs, at 757-269-7617 or e-mail lechman@jlab.org  .

The event is spread out over several facilities and involves a lot of walking, taking multiple flights of concrete stairs and walking down and back up rough, inclined truck ramps. Due to upgrade construction work, in some areas, visitors will be walking on compacted gravel or dirt surfaces instead of pavement. Wear sturdy, comfortable walking shoes and sunscreen or a rimmed hat and protective clothing. Shuttle buses will be available to carry visitors between some of the tour stops, but marked areas may be traveled on foot.

Vendors will be selling light refreshments.  Jefferson Lab's last Open House was in April 2007.