Surviving Winter

As the holiday season looms upon us, scholarly events temporarily dwindle.  This presents a conundrum.  Scholars generally like to keep intellectually active throughout the winter months but also prefer avoiding the incessant loop of every rendition of Jingle Bells known to man.  Here are some ideas to help you get out of the house but dodge the holiday bustle, strongly scented spruce, and glitter:

Indoor events for all ages:

  • Visit the Como Zoo Conservatory.  Experience the smell of genuine green plants.  Let your glasses fog with humidity.  Study their impressive collection of flora.  With a small donation, this haven of living things is a favorite repeat winter destination.  
  • Tour one of the many exhibits open at a local museum.  We highly recommend the Bodies and Spirits Exhibit at the Wangensteen Library:  Open during library hours through May 31st, this exhibit showcases over 400 years of medical, scientific, and recipe books from the library’s collection, including records of 16th century women distilling alcohol for medicines at home, 19th century microscopic investigations of the science of fermentation, and 20th century medical and social debates about alcohol.  By tapping into the intriguing history of fermenting and distilling, the exhibit will spark discussions in the broader Twin Cities community around the role of alcohol in health and society.
  • Check out our Resources page for suggestions on podcasts, educational websites, and YouTube channels.  It’s winter.  You’re stuck inside.  May as well use this time to learn how to code in Python or study the history of the agricultural revolution!
  • Visit your local tabletop gaming store and join a game of strategy.  Perhaps not the most scholarly suggestion here but a strong one nonetheless.  Strategy games exercise our little grey cells.  And we can meet new friends along the way!

Family Events:

  • Spend the next several Saturdays bouncing between museums:
  • Visit the Bell Museum of Natural History’s Touch and See Discovery room. From the website: imagine a place where you can find the answers to all your questions about the natural world. Investigate wondrous objects, from a 10,000-year-old wooly mammoth tusk to a life-sized kodiak bear, from an elephant skull to a living, moving snake. The Touch and See Discovery Room has it all - come explore for yourself!

The events calendar is ever-changing.  Be sure to visit the website for the most up-to-date event listings and follow The Sometimes Scholar on Facebook, Twitter, YouTube, and Tumblr for more ideas on how to science the $#*% out of winter.