Serving the campus of the University of Alabama since 1894

The Crimson White

Serving the campus of the University of Alabama since 1894

The Crimson White

Serving the campus of the University of Alabama since 1894

The Crimson White

Creative Campus presents 2010: A Space Oddity

A new sci-fi convention, presented by Creative Campus, has come to the University. Titled “2010: A Space Oddity,” the convention is free but organizers asked that people interested register today by going to the Creative Campus Web site.

The convention’s first event was held Thursday night and included a panel discussion on and a presentation by UA astronomy professor William C. Keel.

Adrian Morris, Tiara Dees and Andrew Richardson, who is online editor for The Crimson White, served as panelists. They discussed science fiction and gaming, followed by a presentation on galactic objects and the need for amateur astronomers from Keel.

Caleb Sexton, a junior majoring in digital media, pioneered the event after becoming a member of Creative Campus. He said the Thursday event is meant to prepare the convention’s participants for the Saturday event and promote Creative Campus.

Sexton said he found out about Creative Campus last spring when he read an email looking for interns. He was interested and applied for the internship.

“It’s a real rewarding experience,” he said. “One of our big things we strive for is interdisciplinary art exploration. The ‘A Space Oddity’ is an example of that. It shows how science inspires the arts and arts inspire the sciences.”

Ashley McIntosh, a second year MBA student, and two other UA students helped plan the convention alongside Sexton. McIntosh helped come up with concepts, schedule, promotion, student involvement, arts admission and creative writing elements.

“Andi Johnson, Ryan Davis and I are assistants to Caleb, the lead man in charge. He came up with the idea of Space Oddity. He presented it to Creative Campus of what he wanted to happen during 3 days,” McIntosh said.

She said she does not know much about science fiction but she enjoys it.

“This is a way to learn about it and I don’t play video games often but I like to find out what people are passionate about,” she said. “This is all really interesting. This is what Creative Campus is about.”

Nicole Doctor, a freshman whose major in undecided, was among the UA students who attended the first portion of the convention.

“I think it was very interesting,” she said. “I was fascinated with galaxy before but Dr. Keel brought some surprising information about the astronomy community.”

Sexton said Keel’s presentation was a lead-in to tonight’s big public viewing at Moundville State Park.

“The primary host of Friday’s star gazing is UA Astronomy Department,” he said. “Dr. Keel will be the active host and Creative Campus members will be talking about space oddity. There will also be telescopes for the public.”

Sexton also said Saturday is the all-day event at Shelby Hall. Saturday’s special guests include award winning sci-fi author Jack McDevitt, short story and poetry authors Jane Merriam, David Kopaska-Merkel, Peg Duthi, Alex White and Lou Anders, editor of sci-fi publisher Pyr in Birmingham. Anders will be giving a talk on book cover design.

“The embodiment is that we are trying to create an environment for everyone.” Sexton said. “There will be creative writer workshops, fashion illustration, talks on robotics as well as a robotic demonstration.”

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