Flint Science Fair

April 6-8th, 1957 was the very first Flint Area Science Fair

By David C. Hill (Current Board member)

Our cover shows the awards ceremony program from the very first Flint Science Fair 50 years ago (1957). There was great excitement in Flint about the first fair. Much publicity accompanied the fair and many community leaders were involved. Public concern at the time was that our science education was not keeping up with the Russians.

At the awards ceremony the address was by Dr. Wernher von Braun who is pictured on the cover. He was already famous as developer of the V2 rocket and head of the U.S. Army missile program. In a few months he was to become a household word as the man who got United States into space and to the Moon when all looked dismal in the wake of the Soviet Union's Oct 4, 1957 launch of Sputnik and November launch of Sputnik II years ahead of anything that we were capable of doing at the time. He was the subject of a Hollywood movie, many books and even a comic book series.

Close to a thousand students entered in the Junior and Senior Divisions, there was no Elementary Division. Students stood by their projects for two days explaining them to the many thousands of people who came to the IMA Auditorium to see the Fair, I had an exhibit in the Junior Division as a 7th grader. This was an exciting time for me.