As people drank craft beer and ate dinner on a crowded patio at Tuesday’s Science on Tap event, they also learned about solar eclipses.
The event featured a talk from IU astronomy Ph.D. student Alec Hirschauer.
Hirschauer discussed the science of solar eclipses and other topics related to astronomy at Big Woods Bloomington, a bar and restaurant downtown near the corner of Kirkwood Avenue and Grant Street.
Science on Tap director Sean Buehler started the program in August 2016, and it has presented talks on various scientific topics for almost every month since then.
Past topics include the human mind, the science of beer and sexual education.
The talks take place either on the patio at Big Woods Bloomington or Upland Brewing Company’s Banquet Hall depending on the weather.
Buehler, also an IU senior, said he has been involved with science education outreach since high school.
He began Science on Tap to provide an enjoyable way for adults to learn about science.
“We want to make science fun, and what better way to make science fun than throw a little beer into the mix?” Buehler said.
Science on Tap co-director Brian Coppinger said the events promote science literacy in the local community.
“I think it brings people together for topics they might not have learned about otherwise,” he said.
Buehler will move to Indianapolis in the fall, but Coppinger will take over Science on Tap when he leaves.
Buehler said he plans to work with Central Indiana Science Outreach to create a similar program in Indianapolis.
There will not be a Science on Tap event in May.
The organization plans to have events for the rest of the summer.
Hirschauer also talked about astronomy at a Science on Tap event last year.
He said he was excited to let people know about an upcoming total solar eclipse.
The eclipse will occur August 21.
“This is one of those experiences you can’t miss,” he said.
Senior Charlie Lowe attended Tuesday’s Science on Tap.
He said it was his second time attending the event. He also attended the talk on the science of beer earlier this year.
“I really enjoy the atmosphere,” he said. “I like being able to learn about new topics, and I appreciate their willingness to answer any and all questions.”
Senior Mitch McCune said he has been to all of the Science on Tap events so far.
He said he likes socializing with people at the event and learning about topics ranging from climate change to the fermentation of beer.
“I like learning about things in an interesting environment,” he said. “And who doesn’t like beer?”