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The following article appeared May 16, 2003 in the

 Boy Scout camp in Davie  transformed into science center.

By Nicole T. Lesson
Staff Writer
Posted May 16, 2003

Davie ˇ Scouts are getting excited about science.

 
   Youngsters who visit the Seminole Boy Scout Camp can look at one of the first electric cars, learn to forecast the weather and use a remotely operated camera to do some nature watching from inside a building. Soon, visitors will be able to check out a Beechcraft two-engine airplane.

    The trading post at the Scout camp, at 3301 SW 142nd Ave. In western Davie, a mile and a half east of Weston, has been transformed into a science and technology center thanks to donations by a Boca Raton businessman.

    Boy Scout Abdualrahman Hamad enjoys science and had fun tinkering with items at the center. "The Mercury suit for space is a unique object that you don't see very often," said Hamad, 17, of Davie, who visits the camp every other month. "I also liked working the mechanics with the robot dog. It responds to sounds and you can call it or clap your hands and it comes to you." Hamad hopes to return to the center and thinks it benefits young people.

    "Most people who will attend the camp are a young age, and this exposes them to the many fields of science," he said. "It helps make them enthusiastic about going into the science field."

    The center, which opened April 12, has a space and aviation display, rock, mineral and fossil collections, a lightning detection system, butterfly, bug and insect displays, and other scientific items.

    It was made possible by Richard Newman, who has loved science and technology since his youth. The former Boy Scout said he wanted to expose youngsters to the learning aspects of science.

The center is formally known as High-Tech Productions.com Science and Technology Center, which Newman named after his company's Web site. The company, High-Tech Productions, converts, transfers and duplicates videos and DVDs. For three years, Newman has been helping to open science and technology centers at Boy Scout camps all over the country. There are 10 in eight other states, including New York, Washington and Texas.

    Shortly after the 11th site opened at the Seminole Boy Scout Camp, a 12th center opened April 30 at Pembroke Pines Charter Middle School. It is the first center to be based in a school.

    Newman said he scours the world looking for items to display by using his worldwide contacts, the E-Bay Internet auction site and making purchases from stores, distributors and manufacturers. "I have bought items from cosmonauts in Russia, geodes from workers in Brazil, space items from NASA engineers, posters and displays from the European, Russian, Chinese and French space agencies," said Newman, 47. "I would love to open at least 50 centers in all 50 states by the time I'm 50."

   Newman said he gets an overwhelming feeling when he sees youths exploring the science centers. "I call it the wow factor. They are used to seeing the same [non-science] things at Boy Scout camp -- and this is fun stuff," he said. "It will help keep them off the street and give them something fun to do. I wish there were things like this when I was a kid."

    Last year, Newman approached the Seminole Scout Camp's directors about donating items for a science technology center. The 2,000-square-foot building that had been used for a trading post became available, and Newman and scouting officials formed a partnership. The camp is owned and operated by the South Florida Council of the Boy Scouts of America, which serves more than 15,000 Scouts in Miami-Dade, Broward and Monroe counties.

    Ernesto Carballo, the council's camping director, thinks the center is an asset to the campsite and will just improve their program. "It's a great resource for us and a better opportunity to teach science skills," said Carballo, who has been with the council for 10 years. "It seems science is put on the back burner as well as math and music."

    The center is open only on weekends, but Carballo hopes the program will expand to weekdays so students at nearby schools can visit.

    Newman said he plans to help keep the Davie center updated with new items, including the pending arrival of a Beechcraft airplane. "It will be a fuselage with wings," he said. "It will be pointed up in a 10-degree angle so when the kids play around it they can feel like they are flying."

    For more info on the Science & Technology Centers,
or to have a center set up at a school or camp near you, visit:

www.HighTechScience.org or call (561) 750-7000.


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High-Tech Productions
is proud to help
bring science & technology to kids of all ages.

Here are links to some Fun Activities & Great Places to Visit


This web site is intended for educational purposes & to
further enhance the learning experience for kids of all ages.

Our purpose is to bring new technologies to the youth of America
and to promote science and space research & education.

There is never an admission fee or cover charge
nor do do we sell any products or services.

Although some of the Science Centers are located at Scout Camps,
we are not directly affiliated with the Boy Scouts of America.

The Science Centers are donated by High-Tech Productions,
a privately owned company located in Florida.

Our All-Electric Vehicles, Robots and Space Artifacts are loaned out and
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