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Learn belly dancing, create a mini-earthquake. Do it all at Rutgers Day 2017

The Rutgers Scarlet Knight raises his arms before the team takes the field for a game
The Rutgers Scarlet Knight raises his arms before the team takes the field for a game (Rich Schultz/Getty Images)

Rutgers Day is Saturday, April 29, from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. on all three of Rutgers University’s campuses in New Brunswick, Newark and Camden.

This is the university’s annual welcome show-and-tell event for visitors of all ages, says Melissa Selesky, interim senior director of community affairs at Rutgers.

“There’s over 600 free performances, demonstrations, interactive activities and our visitors come to learn about the university’s research, teaching and service,” she says.

There’s something for everyone. In New Brunswick, there is a parade where alumni join the Rutgers Marching Scarlet Knights, Rutgers cheerleaders and the Scarlet Knight mascot to march down College Avenue. There will be choral concerts, bands, martial arts demonstrations and belly dancing lessons.

In Newark, you can be a judge! Bang the gavel, pose for a picture in a judge’s robe and learn more about Rutgers Law School.

One highlight in Camden is a “community poem that is being written by the Writer’s House, where you can add a line to a sprawling poem that will celebrate Rutgers and the Camden community and will be published online,” says Selesky.

Rutgers Day is held every year as part of the school’s outreach engagement to the state. The university wants to show and tell the community all the things that’s happening at the state’s largest university.

“It’s a day for everybody to experience all the cutting-edge science, technology, knowledge that’s being developed here at the university.”

What’s so cool about this year is that Rutgers Day coincides with Alumni Weekend, so it’s a big day for alumni to come back and see what’s happening currently at the university, says Selesky.

Admission is free. Parking is free. On the New Brunswick campus, free shuttle buses will also be available between local campuses. There’s no need to pre-register for any of the events. Just show up and have fun.

Program highlights are below.  For a complete list, visit http://rutgersday.rutgers.edu. The website as a downloadable booklet and event map for every campus.

NEW BRUNSWICK

Rutgers Day and All Alumni Parade: At 10:30 a.m., alumni join the Rutgers Marching Scarlet Knights, Rutgers cheerleaders and, of course, the Scarlet Knight mascot to march down College Avenue. Rutgers history comes to life with the appearance of characters from our revolutionary past.

 Tent of Big Ideas: The School of Arts and Sciences tents on College Avenue and Busch campuses will be destinations for lovers of the arts and humanities. Distinguished faculty will present short, thought-provoking talks on a wide range of topics, including astronomy, politics, energy and more.

 The CIRC Challenge: Find puzzle cards at booths throughout the campus, then use the CyberLearning Innovation and Research Center’s augmented reality app to “trigger” actions on the cards, solve the puzzle, receive a prize upon completion and be entered into a grand prize drawing at the end of the day.

 Ask the State Climatologist: Visit with New Jersey climate experts and find out why we have seen such extremes of late. 

 Phenomenal Faraday Physics: This popular show features an exploding hydrogen balloon, a fire extinguisher rocket and a man on a bed of nails.

 School of Health Professions Big Tent: The School of Health Professions is celebrating its 40th anniversary with games, giveaways, and great advice for a healthier, happier you.

 Marathon Reading of Charlie and the Chocolate Factory. Visitors are encouraged to listen or join in to this continuous reading of Roald Dahl’s iconic work.  

 Performances: Rutgers Day features many performances, including choral concerts, bands, belly dancing, hip-hop dance and martial arts demonstrations, as well as shows by the Cabaret Theater and Livingston Theatre Company.

 Animals: Learn more about animals and insects though events such as the Farm Animal Showcase, cockroach races and visits with the Mounted Patrol and a horse on a treadmill.

 Gardening: Take greenhouse tours and explore the offerings of vegetables, herbs and flowers, including the Rutgers 250 Tomato plants, Rutgers Scarlet Strawberry and the new Pumpkin Habanero Pepper, all developed by the Rutgers New Jersey Agricultural Experiment Station.

 CAMDEN

Community Poem Presented by Writers House: Add a line to a sprawling group poem that celebrates Rutgers and the Camden community and see the completed poem posted online.

 Cooper Street Quick Tours: Step back in time with a short stroll to the Cooper Street Historic District.

 From the Pine Barrens to the City Centers of South Jersey: Ecology Where People Live and Work: The Department of Biology discusses topics ranging from why cities are hotter than the surrounding areas to how junk food affects ant development.

 Build Your Own Interactive Object: Students and faculty from the Digital Studies Center guide visitors through the basics of creating their own interactive, mobile computing device.

 Experience Virtual Reality: Play simple puzzle games in a three-dimensional virtual environment.

 Make Your Own Rutgers Shield: Personalize your own shields with markers, stickers, stamps and more.

RU Curious about 3-D Printing?: See a 3-D printer in action and take home a 3-D printed Rutgers key chain.

 Science, Sleuthing and Sherlock –The Fascinating World of Forensics: Learn how science can solve mysteries and catch bad guys. Be a detective for a day and try out several forensic techniques with the Departments of Biology and Chemistry.

 West Indian–Indian Connection Presents “Bollywood Through the Years!”: The students of the West Indian–Indian Connection will highlight their cultural dance with varied music, dress and style.

 NEWARK

Records at Play: The Institute of Jazz@50: Did you know that Rutgers University-Newark is home to the largest archive of jazz memorabilia in the world? See Miles Davis’s trumpet, along with many other treasures.

 Geologic Hazards: Earthquakes and Tsunami: Create mini earthquakes and generate tsunami waves to learn about the forces unleashed by these geologic phenomena.

 You Be the Judge! You Are Out of Order!: Bang the gavel, pose for a picture in a judge’s robe and learn more about Rutgers Law School.

 It’s a Bird! It’s a Plane! No! It’s Your Rutgers Super Heroes in Safety Patrol: Meet safety patrol personnel, participate in interactive activities and learn safety information.

 Is This Real? Use virtual reality headsets with the latest technology to deliver a total immersion virtual reality experience. Strap on the headsets and be immediately transported to an alternate world.

 It’s a Family Affair: Blaze a scarlet trail to the alumni tent with your future Rutgers grad! Show your little ones that they too can be scarlet forever as they pose for fun photos in a Rutgers graduation cap and gown that’s just their size.

 Your Baby’s Brain! Calling all baby scientists! Bring your little ones to build sand castles, play with bubbles and make balloon animals while you learn about your baby’s development from the Infancy Studies Laboratory−Center for Molecular and Behavioral Neuroscience.

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