APS News

Physicists Step Out in Style at Fernbank Gala

The lavish interior of Atlanta's Fernbank Museum, site of the APS Centennial Gala Celebration.
The lavish interior of Atlanta's Fernbank Museum, site of the APS Centennial Gala Celebration. [Click on image for larger photo.].

Tuxedos and gowns, fine dining and dancing were the order of the day for those attending the APS Centennial gala celebration, hosted by Atlanta's Fernbank Museum. While not everyone opted for the formality of black tie fashion, most seemed to relish the opportunity leave their meeting badges and hefty volumes of abstracts behind and don the requisite finery, mixing and mingling with both old and new acquaintances in the distinctly elegant surroundings.

The catered buffet dinner featured three menus from different geographical regions, while a jazz combo provided accompaniment in a side room for anyone desiring to dance. Guests milling about the upper balcony could stay close to the open bar while viewing a special exhibition by award-winning science photographer Felice Frankel, constructed around the theme of "Envisioning Physics." Commissioned by the APS specifically for the Centennial meeting, the exhibit is available for touring at venues around the country. Those desiring additional entertainment had the option of viewing the popular IMAX film, "Cosmic Voyage," at various screening times. Meanwhile, in the auditorium, science magician Bob Friedhoffer delighted audiences with clever asides and magical sleights-of-hand, alternating 20-minute shows with Lynda Williams, "the Physics Chanteuse," who wowed them with her cosmic cabaret, featuring such crowd-pleasing tunes as "Solid State of Mind" and "Carbon is a Girl's Best Friend."

Finally, alert attendees circling the room might have noticed the appearance of a few especially stellar celebrities: Albert Einstein (two versions, in fact, for those who thought they were seeing double), Marie Curie, and a dapper J. Robert Oppenheimer were on hand to greet the guests and pose for photographs, all in the name of celebrating a century of physics.


View photos from the Gala and Physics Festival   



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