For one day in June every year, north London’s Caledonian Road is closed to normal traffic and instead filled with stalls, stages and fairground rides.
Along with three IOP colleagues and two enthusiastic volunteers – Jess and Dan – we headed to the Cally Festival on Sunday to set up our Physics in the Field stand and spent the day talking to visitors of all ages, getting them involved in hands-on physics activities. We were hoping to reach visitors from the local community – families and adults who will be out new neighbours when we move to King’s Cross.
This year we took our usual crowd-pleasing physics tricks, along with an activity that allowed the visitors to get a bit more creative – our pipecleaner particle physics activity. Hundreds of visitors used beads, pompoms and pipecleaners to create their own particle collisions to take home, chatting to us about physics in the process.
While Jess and the rest of the IOP team wielded glueguns at the IOP stall, Dan and I embraced physics busking by heading out into the festival to stop passers-by and wow them with our balloon kebabs and inseparable books. They’re always firm favourites with visitors.
We’re grateful to the team of organisers at Islington Council, along with our fantastic volunteers who made the day such a success. We’re looking forward to returning next year – and hope the sunshine is, too.
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