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Simple science makes jack-o’-lanterns spooky

By Sara Thompson

Special to the Enterprise


Carving Jack-O-Lanterns is a favorite pastime for Halloween. There are countless faces that can be carved, ranging from scary to silly, anything you can imagine. It is common to place a small candle inside to make the faces glow after dark, but there is also something you can do during the day to make your jack-o-lanterns spooky with some simple science.


Supplies:

• Carved jack-o-lantern

• Two small cups

• Hydrogen peroxide

• Liquid dish soap

• Warm Water

• Yeast

• Food dye (optional)


Experiment:

In a small cup or beaker, add ½ Cup of hydrogen peroxide. Use gloves and/or have an adult to help as hydrogen peroxide can irritate your skin. In the same cup mix 1 Tablespoon of liquid dish soap, and food dye if you want it colorful, around 4-6 drops should be enough. Gently place this cup inside of your jack-o-lantern.


In a second cup, mix 1 Tablespoon of yeast with 3 Tablespoons of warm water. Stir and let rest for around 30 seconds. The last step is to quickly pour the water and yeast into the cup with the peroxide, soap, and food dye, place the lid or top of the jack-o-lantern on and watch what happens!


The two solutions react to make a fun, foamy mess. If the top of the jack-o-lantern is in place, the foam will have no other option than to escape through the carved face giving it an oozing and fun look.


This is only one of several foam experiments you can use to make your Halloween festive with science. Explorit is open to the public on Fridays from 1-4pm, Saturdays and Sundays from 10am-2pm. Admission is $5 per person. Explorit Members, ASTC, and those age 2 and under free.


Children in costume receive half off admission October 28-30!


Exploit's coming events:

• Check out Explorit’s Mad Science table during the Zombie Bike Ride on Sunday, October 30!

• A Membership to Explorit grants the recipient free visits to Explorit’s regular public hours, discounts on events, summer camps and workshops, and gives you ASTC benefits to visit other museums throughout the world. To purchase or for more information visit https://www.explorit.org/membership or call Explorit at 530-756-0191.

• School Programs are available to schedule. We have educational programs that travel to schools and options for field trips at our facility. Please call 530-756-0191 for more information or to schedule.

• Now is a great time to donate and help Explorit continue to educate and inspire the scientists of tomorrow: https://www.explorit.org/donate.