Summer Splash Fest is here!

Today is the date of our first-ever Summer Splash Fest at Kump Education Center. “SuperB Science Hero,” John Red Banks is here in town with all his gear for three short shows titled The Magic of Science. Between magic shows check out the Minds in Motion games Midland Elementary teachers use to help first graders focus on learning and all the Project Wet water activities Kump Education Center volunteers have developed to highlight the importance of fresh water in West Virginia.

The day after Mr. Banks retired from teaching high school chemistry and physics in Kosciusko, MS, he called me and said that he was ready to “put his show on the road.” However, he is one of those teachers who “will never lose his class.” As soon as he finishes his magic presentations in Elkins, he will drive back to Mississippi to start a new part-time job as physics teacher and science coordinator for the local Catholic Diocese. Retiring from teaching is not easy if you love what you do and think children are important.

Mr. Banks a.k.a. “SuperB Science Hero” is full of surprises. His once red hair is white most of the time now, but we understand that it often turns blue for magic shows. Perhaps it represents his red, white, and blue enthusiasm for great American science endeavors. I saw his bed of nails in the back of his pickup truck, but I am not sure how he plans to mix fire and water or cook up the batch of elephant toothpaste.

Another much-anticipated Splash Fest wonderment is a Giant Bubble engineered by AmeriCorps member Isabel Harger just for the Kump Center. Folks tell me that Isabel can put kids inside a huge bubble, and I can’t wait to see how that works. I have seen how much enthusiasm Isabel has had for YMCA Summer Science activities, and I know that whatever she does will be fun.

Local teacher heroes like Jane Birdsong, Linda and John Aliveto, and Pam Byrne will lead kids on an Incredible Journey to discover how water moves over our blue planet and to see how it works as “the liver for the river” in our Kump Education Center wetland across from Kroger and Hiawatha’s.

Kids can slip, slide, and splash during water games on the lawn. Inside the historic Kump House you will find an amazing Silent Auction organized by Diana Vanoy with the Elkins Woman’s Club volunteers like Jeanne Johnson. Logan Smith’s picnic lunch menu will include a special batch of root beer from Big Timber and beef burgers from Campbell’s Market. The Summer Splash Fest will offer a stupendous day of super science learning and family fun.

Before the Summer Splash Fest, YMCA Day Campers will enjoy Summer Science programs.