In June, Governors Island will host the World Science Festival's "Science on Site: Explorations of Governors Island," where urban explorers can learn about the natural world in one of the city's hidden oases.
The renaissance of Governors Island has allowed this once-abandoned military base to present some wonderful attractions and activities. This month the island hosts the World Science Festival's Science on Site: Explorations of Governors Island. Any urban explorer or scientist will find much to discover about the scientific history and folklore of maritime life around New York harbor.
At Science on Site, visitors can choose from a menu of scientific excursions that use the island's marine habitat and relative isolation as a site-specific laboratory. For example, birders can explore how islands such as Governors become "traps" of sorts for migrant birds. "The Delicate Art of Sungazing" takes advantage of the island's exposure to present a study of solar radiance; participants will observe the sun via telescopes, noting its sunspots and weather, and also take in some rays - albeit indirectly - by viewing satellite images.
An exploration that touches upon New York City's history is "Oysters of New York Harbor." Through the early 20th century, these mollusks were a staple in local restaurants and pubs and a mainstay in people's diets. At this time New York harbor was a thriving ecosystem, but over the years, the oyster population dwindled as the harbor became polluted. Today, with efforts to preserve the harbor as a natural habitat, the oysters and other sea critters are returning, and this workshop offers a glimpse of the artificial reefs that have helped to make this happen.
Meanwhile, the island itself is a treat. Like every weekend during the summer, it will be teeming with life of its own: bike riders, walkers, art installations, food and beer tastings, and more.
What: World Science Festival's Science on Site: Explorations on Governors Island
Where: Governors Island - ferries depart from Battery Maritime Building at 10 South Street in Manhattan, and Brooklyn Bridge Park Pier 6, at the foot of Atlantic Avenue in Brooklyn
When: June 4, 10am-6pm
How much: FREE
For more information: 212-352-3101 or www.worldsciencefestival.com
Also see: Our Online Calendar, for even more upcoming family events in the NYC area