High School student Charles Edge showed Chicago Cubs great and baseball Hall of Famer Ernie Banks how reading can set the world on fire-literally.

Edge, a student at Edgar Allan Poe Classical School on the South Side, was among the hundreds of youth and adults attending the second Annual Chicago Science in the City fair last Saturday at Malcolm X College, 1900 W. Van Buren.

The annual event, sponsored in part by the mayor’s office, is designed to showcase the importance of science, technology, sports, and science education. This year’s event drew more than 30 different organizations from Chicago’s science and sports communities, as well as residents and Chicago public school students.

During opening ceremonies, Edge displayed a book to Banks, who was among the dignitaries attending the fair. When Edge opened the book, part of a science experiment on fire, the pages burst into flames to a surprised Banks. Several other science exhibits were on display indoors and outside the MXC West Side campus throughout the day.

“I’m here on behalf of the Cubs and to see all of these young people involved in learning more about sports, life, science and physics,” said Banks. “This is very interesting to me.”

Mayor Richard Daley was also on hand Saturday, welcoming students and visitors. Saturday’s exhibits and participants included: Sport Fit; Sports are for Everybody;
The Chicago Children’s Museum; and the Healthier Cultural Center. Many of the exhibits were interactive for children and adults, such as the “Gummi Bear Long Jump,” which showed the physics of projectile motion.

The “Robots on First Overdrive” exhibit involved high school students showing their robotic designs. Students from local high schools showed how parts of the human body work similarly to the robot’s moving parts. Some of the robot’s they created were used in a game showing basketball moves performed with a huge blue ball. Visitors could also take items and instructions to continue some of the science experiments at home.

Along with the City of Chicago, the event was sponsored in part by World Sport Chicago, Chicago 2016, Chicago Public Schools, and the Chicago Park District.

Terry Dean contributed to this report

If you go…

The Austin African American Business Networking Association's monthly meeting is Friday, Oct. 24, from 9:30 to 10:30 a.m. at the Sankofa Cultural Arts and Business Center, 5820 W. Chicago Ave.