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Love and learning

If dissecting a heart is your idea of a romantic date, you’re in luck.

Fredericton’s Science East Interactive Museum will be hosting a special adults-only evening event this Valentine’s Day entitled The Science of Love, where visitors can enjoy drinks, food and live music while interacting with the museum’s many peculiar exhibits.

Michael Edwards, Science East’s director of programming, said that the event is designed to provide an alternative to the tired Valentine cliché of dinner and dancing.

“The [existing] exhibits will all be available, but we’re going to do some special demonstrations, experiments, and have a guest speaker come in as well,” said Edwards. “It’ll be a dynamic space with no shortage of stuff to keep people busy. And we’re going to have a bar – that’ll help things go a bit more smoothly.”

Edwards is shrewdly keeping the complete itinerary a secret, in order to provide guests with an evening full of sensual surprises around every corner. He does reveal a few details, though, about the event’s menu: molecular gastronomy, the bleeding-edge of gourmet cuisine which brings science into the kitchen to create radical, challenging dishes.

“It’s a really neat combination of science and food – for example, you can turn oil and other high-fat products into powder, or you can create little liquid-filled balls that that burst open when you bite into them,” said an excited Edwards. “We’ll have food for people to sample, but we’ll also give them a chance to create it themselves.”

He added with a smile that liquid-nitrogen ice cream might possibly be on the menu as well.

While Science East is located in the heart of downtown, its unassuming stone façade can be easily missed by pedestrians. Formerly the York County Jail, the 172-year-old edifice has housed the non-profit educational museum since 1994. According to Edwards, this special Valentine’s Day event is designed to bring in both new visitors and old.

“There’s always been a stigma attached to adults coming in to science centres, just simply because they’re thought as being somewhere for kids. But there’s been a shift in the last few years to start holding events for adults, giving them a chance to come in to the place and see for themselves without having to elbow kids out of the way.”

Edwards emphasized that the event is not only for couples – anyone looking for an offbeat way to spend an evening is encouraged to come. He hopes that if The Science of Love is a success, the museum might host adult theme nights throughout the year – as well as generate some repeat business.

“A fully-adult event is something we’ve wanted to do for a while,” said Edwards. “Once you get over your fear of going into a science centre on Valentine’s Day, you can always come back in the light of day and do some of the same things as well.”
Visit The Science of Love at Science East, 668 Brunswick St., on Feb. 14 from 7 to 10 p.m. Tickets are $15 plus tax per person. Must be 19+.

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