Horn Point Open House is Satur­day, Oct. 13

The Star Democrat - - LIFE -

CAM­BRIDGE — For the 17th year, rain or shine, the Univer­sity of Mary­land Cen­ter for En­vi­ron­men­tal Sci­ence’s Horn Point Lab­o­ra­tory in­vites the pub­lic to a free open house from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. on Satur­day, Oct. 13.

“Sus­tain­able So­lu­tions through Sci­ence” is this year’s theme. Hands-on ex­hibits al­low vis­i­tors to ex­plore the sci­ence hap­pen­ing at Horn Point Lab and its im­pact on Ch­e­sa­peake Bay to make it healthy and keep it healthy.

“This is the best day of the year for the com­mu­nity to learn about the sci­ence of the Bay.” said Horn Point Lab­o­ra­tory Di­rec­tor Mike Ro­man.

Vis­i­tors can learn how marshes, oys­ters, sed­i­ment, tiny zoo­plank­ton, com­puter mod­els, and more help re­store and sus­tain the Bay. It’s a day filled with ed­u­ca­tional ac­tiv­i­ties for all ages.

A scav­enger hunt will en­hance the kid’s ex­plo­ration of ex­hibits and campus ac­tiv­i­ties. Come aboard UMCES re­search ves­sel Rachel Car­son and ex­plore new ad­vances in aqua­cul­ture at the boat basin. Hop on the hayride for a campus tour and learn how much en­ergy is be­ing pro­duced by the 10-acre so­lar field. Chil­dren will re­ceive a free t-shirt.

“Everyone at the lab is on deck to ex­plain their re­search with ac­tiv­i­ties and dis­plays that make it easy to un­der­stand,” Ro­man said.

From the banks of the Chop­tank River on Mar yland’s Eastern Shore just out­side Cam­bridge, HPL sci­en­tists en­gage in world-renowned re­search in oceanog­ra­phy, wa­ter qual­ity, restora­tion of sea grasses, marshes and shell­fish, and ex­per­tise in ecosys­tem mod­el­ing.

Vis­i­tors to the open house will be able to play in a dig­i­tal sand box to cre­ate shore­lines and model weather’s im­pact around the Bay with laser imag­ing; see an an­i­ma­tion of the trav­els of oys­ter lar­vae as they move from the reef where they spawned to their new, per­ma­nent home reef; match up a DNA se­quence to mi­cro­scopic crea­tures im­por­tant to the food chain and ob­serve and learn about stur­geon whose an­ces­tors date to the Juras­sic pe­riod

Chil­dren can cre­ate eco-friendly an­i­mals that live in our wa­ters, play games that teach fun facts about the Bay, go on a scav­enger hunt through the ex­hibits to learn how the Bay’s last­ing health starts with peo­ple mak­ing a cleaner environment to­day.

The HPL campus is lo­cated at 2020 Horns Point Road on Route 343 out­side of Cam­bridge.

For more in­for­ma­tion, visit www.umces.edu/hpl/open­house or con­tact Carin Starr at 410-2218408 or cstarr@umces.edu.

CONTRIBUTED PHOTO

Horn Point Lab’s Dr. Louis Plough shares his DNA re­search with vis­i­tors of all ages. Through DNA taken from lo­cal wa­ter sam­ples, Plough is able to iden­tify the dif­fer­ent species in­hab­it­ing our wa­ters.

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