Planet Plant brings magic and wizardry of Harry Potter to Winter Gardens
The David Welch Winter Gardens will become a haven for Harry Potter fans from today (Monday 21 July), as the University of Aberdeen launch a week of magical and mystical events.
Witchery and wizardry will be placing a spell over proceedings as the Planet Plant summer project brings a series of Hogwarts inspired activities to Duthie Park, set to enthuse and entertain budding Harrys and Hermiones.
Hosted by the University's Natural History Centre, the Planet Plant project is designed to engage youngsters with the subject of science – in particular the topic of plants – through an array of entertaining and interactive activities.
Taking the theme Magical Medicines the final week in Planet Plant series will give youngsters the opportunity to learn more about the magical medicinal qualities of plants.
Reminiscent of lessons learnt in the classroom of the famous young wizard's school, eager young scientists will be able to discover the wonderful healing powers of plants from near and far flung locations on the Magical Medicine Trail, and sniff out dried herbs, powders, potions and lotions in the Planet Plant Apothecary.
Marie Fish, Education Officer at the University's Natural History Centre, who devised and organised the Planet Plant summer project, said: "Drawing inspiration from the famous young wizard's experiments and antics, throughout this week a host of Magical Medicines events and activities will explore the role plants play in modern day and ancient medicine.
"From investigating the lotions and potions of yesteryear to learning about how scientists are using plants to find crucial cures in contemporary society, there will be plenty to excite and enchant youngsters of all ages. Aspiring scientists will have the chance to take part in a Herbology lesson where they will pot a Scottish Marigold, make their very own magical medicinal remedies to take home, and enjoy an array of trails and crafts."
Visitors will also have the chance to discover how magical wands were first invented, their origins, which trees they come from and the folklore surrounding them. Whilst exhibits of fascinating feathered friends such as snowy, tawny and long eared owls and magical creatures including toads and rats, will be on display providing the opportunity to learn the habits and characteristics of some of Master Potter's mystical companions.
Aberdeen based mobile theatre company Live Wire Productions will also take to the stage on Tuesday (22July) and Thursday (24 July) with their very own magical brand of educational and interactive entertainment.
Marie concludes: "The Planet Plant summer project has been devised with the aim of encouraging youngsters to interact with the subject of science. It is hoped that using unique, entertaining and most importantly educational events and activities to spark their imaginations, we will be able to nurture a genuine interest in scientific studies and encourage youngsters to explore the environment around them."
The Planet Plant summer project is supported by The Scottish Co-operative and the University of Aberdeen, Rowett Institute of Nutrition and Health, Live Wire Productions, Waste Aware Aberdeen and Aberdeen EcoCity.
The Planet Plant summer project continues every day this week until Friday 25 July at the David Welch Winter Gardens, Duthie Park, Aberdeen. Planet Plant is free and open to all ages, however children must be accompanied by an adult.
For more information please see: http://www.abdn.ac.uk/nhc/holiday.shtml
Notes to Editors:
Issued by the Communications Team, Office of External Affairs, University of Aberdeen, King's College, Aberdeen. Tel: (01224) 272014.
Issued on: Monday 21st of July 2008
Contact: Kelly Cromar