Mark Toonen demonstrated glass-blowing at the U of C Chemistry Show at Market Mall last week.
Brandy Dahrogue/the Gauntlet

Don't pipette by mouth

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Are you convinced that the extent of chemistry in your life is limited to the stolen glances that you give to your crush? The Chemistry Department's annual Chemistry Show was intended to tell you otherwise.

"The motto for this year is Chemistry is not a Mystery," said

Chemistry Instructor Dr. Majda Djordjevic. "We wanted to show the general public of all ages that chemical processes are performed on a daily basis."

This year's show was held at Market Mall on Sat., Oct. 19. This is the first year that Market Mall has been used as a venue, but the show has been held for 11 years.

"The Chemistry Show kicks off National Chemistry Week," said Djordjevic. "We have 130 volunteers including undergrad and grad students, alumni and staff. There are also three participating organizations: APEGGA, The Calgary Science Network and The Chemical Institute of Canada."

Many students volunteer for the event to improve their communication skills and to add to their resumes.

"We usually do a shift of three or four hours," said chemistry student Katherine Fabian. "It's fun teaching people what you do."

Throughout the day it was estimated that about 2,000 people dropped by to see the displays and ask questions.

"We have 18 displays," said Dr. Djordjevic. "The displays consist of demonstrations and hands-on activities with a few volunteers at each one."

At the Chemistry Show visitors could make their own chromatogram, crystal plant, metal tree, blue-print--the list goes on. One of the most popular displays was the low temperature demonstration.

"We are dealing with two very cold substances: liquid nitrogen and dry ice," said Fabian. "Using those substances we can freeze objects like roses and create superconductors."

The show is sure to return next year so make sure to check it out--and get a frozen rose for your beau.