The Science in the City festival returns to the streets of Valletta Tonight

Whether you gravitate towards art or science, the two are often thought of as binary opposites. Science in the City is a quintessential Maltese festival that says otherwise, showing the public that science can be creative and art can be analytical every year.

The Festival is held as part of the European Researchers’ Night, which is celebrated (typically) on the same night in over 300 cities across Europe. Over 30,000 visitors flock to Valletta every year to see or even partake in the spectacular assortment of stands, workshops, talks and shows. This year, the event has been split into a Main Street Festival, a Performance Festival, and even some pre-festival events that have already been set into motion. Both of these will be taking place tonight September 29 and tomorrow Saturday 30.

The street festival will be taking place between the hours of 6pm and 11pm at Triton Square and Biskutting Garden. Visitors can speak with both established researchers and artists, witness amazing demonstrations and even try out some Virtual Reality – It’ll all be in one place! Anyone who finds themselves in Valletta tonight will find 12 different Zones with stands dedicated to different fields near the City Gate, as can be seen on the map. Go to Zone 1 to see space junk repurposed into artwork, learn about brain forensics in Zone 9, observe the solar system with your own eyes at Zone 12, and there’s so much more where that came from. 

The Performance festival promises shows and workshops that’ll be held at varying hours over at the Catholic Institute in Floriana, as well as Sala San Duminku and Spazju Kreattiv in Valletta. The science shows will not only offer standard theatrical entertainment, but they’ll also captivate you with fascinating experiments. Then, the workshops will allow you to try your hand at comic illustration, murder-mystery solving, making a mini earthquake (yes, you read that right) and so much more! There will also be sensory-friendly events at the Catholic Institute and Sala San Duminku, which will feature lower sounds, dimmed lights, as well as facilitate a quiet room.

Not only does this festival make for a great family event, but it also helps eliminate any apprehension members of the community may have about science. This year’s theme, ‘Changemakers’, is all about exploring how innovative science and art can be implemented in order to fix the social, environmental, political and technical obstacles that stand in our path towards a better future. Aside from Science In The City, many of the organisers behind the different events are education institutions, NGOs, and members of the local art community who just want to spread knowledge and creativity.

All these events are free, although they require registration which you can find here. Oh, and bring any old batteries you might have to GreenPak COOP’s stand, who’ll be recycling them thereby raising funds for hospice!