Learn to Discover
A 501(c)(3) Tax-Exempt Organization




Past Events

Note: We offer classes at various sites in Monterey County, Santa Cruz County and Santa Clara County. Please see Current Class Offerings on our Home Page for more information.

Learn to Discover participates in a wide variety of community activities in Santa Cruz County, Monterey County and Santa Clara County, and encourages hands-on participation by people of all ages. Here is just a sampling of some of the events we have either sponsored or participated in:
The Hour of Code. Dec. 5-11, 2016. In support of Computer Science Education Week, nearly all of our classes featured a special opportunity for students to experience a taste of the wonderful world of programming, with fun activities and challenges. The opportunity to learn about programming was presented alongside a discussion of career opportunities and ways to continue to learn more on their own. This was our fourth year offering this, and it is always a big hit with all our students! Learn to Discover is a charter member of code.org. Learn more.
Santa Cruz County Fair. Sept. 14-18, 2016. Learn to Discover was happy to sponsor many of the activities of the Technology Department at the Fair this year. Highlights included a hands-on demonstration of virtual reality with Samsung Galaxy S7 phones and Samsung Gear VR headsets, where more than 3,000 visitors were treated to an exciting Runaway Mine Train ride, as well as other VR experiences. We also demonstrated PancakeBot - the world's first food printer that prints custom pancakes by automatically dispensing batter directly onto a griddle, taking 3D printing to a whole new level! Thanks to everyone who submitted entries to the Technology Department that helped to make this year's fair ("Cows, Plows & Oh Wows!") the best ever.
Maker Faire Bay Area. Friday-Saturday-Sunday, May 20-22, 2016. Held at the San Mateo Event Center, Maker Faire, is the Greatest Show (and Tell) on Earth: a family-friendly festival of invention, creativity and resourcefulness, and a celebration of the Maker movement. This is an annual don't-miss event! Learn more.
Santa Cruz Mini Maker Faire. Saturday, April 16, 2016. Gateway School, 126 Eucalyptus Ave., Santa Cruz. This was the first Mini Maker Faire in Santa Cruz County! Learn to Discover demonstrated PancakeBot - the world's first food printer capable of printing pancakes by automatically dispensing batter directly onto a griddle, taking 3D printing to a whole new level. The day provided many opportunities to experience innovation, creativity and fun, fun, fun! Learn more.
Movie Premiere! The Legacy of Arrow Development (Six Flags Magic Mountain, Valencia California). Saturday, January 30, Gearworks Theater @ Six Flags Magic Mountain, 4PM. Due to overwhelming demand, a second Premiere was held in Southern California, at Six Flags Magic Mountain Theme Park. The showing was included with admission to the Park, and ACE members with membership cards were treated to priority seating! Check out the sneak peak of the movie!. (P.S. Hundreds enjoyed the world premiere held at the Montgomery Theater in San Jose on Saturday, January 23, and the movie was greeted by an overwhelming number of rave reviews, including those by many people who used to work at Arrow!)
Movie Premiere! The Legacy of Arrow Development (Montgomery Theater, San Jose). Saturday, January 23, 2016 7:30pm. Arrow Development was one of the most influential and creative roller coaster design and amusement park ride manufacturing organizations in the world, and it was based in Mountain View, CA (less than 40 miles from Santa Cruz)! It created many well-known rides & ride systems at Disneyland, including those for the Matterhorn Bobsleds, Mad Tea Party, King Arthur Carrousel, Mr. Toad's Wild Ride, Dumbo the Flying Elephant, Casey Jr. Circus Train, Snow White's Scary Adventure, Autopia, Alice in Wonderland, Pirates of the Caribbean, the Haunted Mansion, and more! Our son, Nicholas, has been the primary videographer and editor of this film, which tells the exciting story of Arrow, as seen through the eyes of theme park designers, park employees, and others. It was produced in cooperation with the American Coaster Enthusiasts, a worldwide roller coaster enthusiast and preservation non-profit. For only $10 ($20 for a VIP ticket!), you can say you attended the Premiere at the Montgomery Theater in San Jose! Hundreds enjoyed the premiere, and it was greeted by rave reviews, including those by many people who used to work at Arrow! Check out the sneak peak of the movie!
The Hour of Code. Dec. 7-13, 2015. In support of Computer Science Education Week, nearly all of our classes featured a special opportunity for students to experience a taste of the wonderful world of programming, with fun activities and challenges. The opportunity to learn about programming was presented alongside a discussion of career opportunities and ways to continue to learn more on their own. This was our third year offering this, and it was a big hit with all our students, once again! Learn to Discover is a charter member of code.org. Learn more.
Family Fun Night - with Special Guest Speaker, Video Game Designer Mike Parisi! Friday, October 23, 2015, 6:30-8:30pm. Thank you for joining us for some ghoulish fun, drinks and snacks while you created your very own Halloween-themed video game, Halloween treat bag (or bookmark or mask), and enjoyed other fun activities! In addition, we were honored to be joined by Mike Parisi, a local video game designer, who spoke to us about the video game industry and how to make our ideas digitally come to life, as well as about a game he has created called "Isopod: The Roly Poly Science Game". Ages 3 and up were welcome! $5/person, or $15/family (4 or more). Learn more
Love Monday at Discretion Brewing. Monday, October 19, 2015. There really WAS a reason to love Mondays! Thank you so much, Discretion Brewing, for supporting us! And, thanks to those who interacted with us at this great event! (On Love Mondays, Discretion Brewing recognizes and “encourages local groups that do extraordinary things.” We were honored to have been chosen as one of these organizations!) Discretion Brewing contributed 20% of their beer sales to Learn to Discover. Learn more. Please give 'em a Like on Facebook to thank them for their generous support of us! Address of Discretion Brewing: 2703 41st Ave., Soquel, CA. (See map). Their phone number is: (831) 316-0662.
Back IN School Expo. Saturday, October 3, 2015. Noon to 6pm. This free event at the Capitola Mall offered fun demonstrations, performances and special promotions. Learn to Discover offered robotics demonstrations from 2-3pm, and we met with many visitors met with us in our space at the Capitola Mall beteeen 10am and 2pm to learn about our offerings, stay for some drop-in time, and get to know us. Thanks to all for coming!
National Drive Electric Week event. Sunday, Sept. 20, 2015, from Noon to 4pm, at Capitola Mall, 1855 41st Ave., Capitola. We offered robotics activities for the family, and helped visitors to learn about electric vehicles. Learn more.
Santa Cruz County Fair. Sept. 16-20, 2015. We had a great time hosting the Technology Department exhibits at the Santa Cruz County Fair and encouraging fair visitors to interact with our 3D Printers, Robots, Remote-Controlled Vehicles, and much more. We also offered fun, hands-on activites (such as building various technology-themed contraptions). This year's theme was "Country Nights & Carnival Lights", so we decorated with plenty of LED's, scale model carnival rides, and much more! Learn more.
Intro to Animation Workshop at NuMu. Saturday, July 25, 2015 from 10:30am to Noon. NuMu is the exciting New Museum of Los Gatos. We offered a free 1½-hour Intro to Animation Workshop.
FREE Open House and Fun Fest. Saturday, June 6, 2015, 10AM to Noon. We invited you to drop by our site at the Capitola Mall to play with some of our fun, tech-based products, and learn about our Ongoing Classes and Summer Camps. Visitors tried their hands at being a robotics engineer, animator, scientist, aviator, roller coaster builder or LEGO Designer. We had loads of LEGOs and cool robots for you to interact with, and much more! Guests experienced how all of our classes emphasize the connections between science, technology, art and design to help children explore the wonders of our world. And, the event was FREE! Location Map.
Maker Faire Bay Area. Saturday-Sunday, May 16-17, 2015. Held at the San Mateo Event Center, Maker Faire, once again, proved that it is the Greatest Show (and Tell) on Earth: a family-friendly festival of invention, creativity and resourcefulness, and a celebration of the Maker movement. This is an annual don't-miss event! Learn more.
"Soaring Thru the Sky" Flight Event. Friday, April 24th, 2015, 6:30pm-8:00pm. Thanks for joining us for some interactive fun with things that fly at our site at the Capitola Mall. Visitors interacted with the world of planes, helicopters and rockets. Guests flew helicopters, airplanes and zeppelins using our flight simulators, and built with LEGOs & Erector sets. Visitors learned some of the physics of what makes a paper airplane fly, constructed their own, and built one using plans from one of our great books. Ages 4+ were welcome, and many families and friends attended. We provided the materials. Entry fee: $5 per person. Location Map.
LEGO City Building Party! Friday, March 27, 2015. 6:30pm to 8:00pm. From skyscrapers to landmarks, from tiny houses, to large mansions, this event was for kids and adults who love building with LEGO bricks. Guests built LEGO cities together, by adding their own designs of houses, stores, vehicles and more. Guests used creativity and imagination to create a city they would want to live in. We provided the LEGO bricks, base plates, and mini-figures. Ages 3+ were welcome! Entry Fee: $5/person. Location Map.
Second Saturday on the Farm - Robotics in Agriculture. Saturday, March 14, 2015. 11am-3pm. Guests joined us at the Agriculture History Project Codiga Center and Museum for Second Saturday on the Farm, at the Santa Cruz County Fairgrounds. This free event featured a scheduled presentation by Learn to Discover on how robots are used in the agriculture industry in Santa Cruz County and around the world. Guests also enjoyed LEGO building, interacting with a variety of robots (including LEGO MINDSTORMS, MIP, Robosapien and BeeBot), driving a racing car robot, and drawing their very own robot. There were also hayrides, movies, cow milking practice, and other activities for children. Learn more about the Agricultural History Project.
Stop-Motion Animation Workshop. Friday, March 6, 2015, 6pm-7:30pm, at the Santa Cruz Children's Museum of Discovery at the Capitola Mall. This free event proviced an opportunity for families and friends to learn the basics of stop-motion animation and create some community-shared movies. There were figures, props and background scenes to choose from. Participants designed their own storyboard and filmed their stories, which were brought to life using our digital cameras, animation software and movie-making techniques. Stop-motion animation develops literacy and math skills through storytelling and sequencing, and is just plain fun to do! Free.
Robotics Family Fun Night. Friday, February 27, 2015, 6:30-8:30PM. A great group of people joined us for a fun time, and interacted with the world of robots! Many attendees built and programmed LEGO Robots. Also, many met a variety of robots: LEGO MINDSTORMS NXT, MIP, BeeBots, Robosapien, and more. People had fun using their design skills to build a paper robot and/or draw their very own robot. Creative ideas were limited only by their imagination! Ages 4 and up were welcome! Many brought their whole family for more fun. We provided the materials. Entry fee: $5 per person.
Board Game Party! Friday, January 30, 2015. 6:30pm to 8:00pm. At Learn to Discover's new site at the Capitola Mall, we had some good ol' board game fun! From Monopoly Junior to The Game of Life, we had a wide variety of board games to play. For LEGO fans, we also had LEGO board games to play! People came to the party to socialize, learn board game skills, and just have a good ol' time! Ages 4+ were welcome, and many brought their friends and family for even more fun! We provided the board games. There was no need to pre-register. Entry Fee: $5/person. Location Map.
The Hour of Code. Dec. 8-19, 2014. In support of Computer Science Education Week, nearly all of our classes will feature a special opportunity for students to experience a taste of the wonderful world of programming, with fun activities and challenges. The opportunity to learn about programming will be presented alongside a discussion of career opportunities and ways to continue to learn more on their own. This will be our second year offering this, and it was a big hit with all our students last year. Learn to Discover is a charter member of code.org. Learn more.
Holiday LEGO Building Party. Friday, December 12, 2014. We invited you to join us for some LEGO fun! Whether you love those little colorful bricks, or live for the holidays, this event was for you! This activity was offered at our new space in the Capitola Mall (next to the new Santa Cruz Children's Museum of Discovery). Kids and adults alike constructed holiday-themed houses, their favorite holiday or winter scene, and many other creations. We provided the materials. Fun for everyone! Ages 3 and over were welcome. Museum membership/admission was not required, but Learn to Discover asked for a $5 fee per person to cover our costs. Thanks for coming!
Santa Cruz County Fair. Sept. 9-14, 2014. Learn to Discover, as Department Chairs for the new Technology Department, offered fairgoers to enter digital animations, video games, and robots at this year's fair. We also had an extensive robotics exhibit, offered fun, hands-on activites (such as building a kaleidoscope, miniature hovercraft, self-propelled cars, and more). 2014's theme was "Sew it Grow it Show it". Thanks to all of you who were able to attend. Learn more.
Maker Faire Bay Area. Saturday-Sunday, May 17-18, 2014. Held at the San Mateo Event Center, Maker Faire, once again, proved that it is the Greatest Show (and Tell) on Earth: a family-friendly festival of invention, creativity and resourcefulness, and a celebration of the Maker movement. This is an annual don't-miss event! Learn more.
3rd Friday: Design & Innovation at the MAH (Santa Cruz Museum of Art and History). Friday, May 16, 2014 from 4:00pm to 8:00pm. A large crowd joined as for fun and interacted with robots, built & designed with LEGOs, made stop-motion clay animated movies, connected technology with digital art, designed amusement parks, and had great conversations with us. Most important of all, we had fun showing how things work and why things work the way they do. We were joined by other exciting artists and exhibitors, including the Cabrillo College Engineering Department, graphic arts innovators from UCSC, and others. Also, guests participated in an interactive labyrinth, and explored creativity and innovation at its finest from other local innovators. Learn more.
TEDx Santa Cruz. Saturday, March 8, 2014. From the spark of inspiration to the act of realization, TEDxSantaCruz featured speakers and performers whose ideas sparked experiences, projects, work, or creativity that is setting in motion a new reality, igniting new connections, and energizing communities. Learn more.
Information/Activity Booth at the Santa Cruz County Science and Engineering Fair. Saturday, March 8, 2014, 9am-2pm. At our booth (located between the Harvest Building and the Arts Building at the Santa Cruz County Fairgrounds), visitors got a sneak preview of the classes we'll be offering this summer. In addition, kids of all ages played with our new Robotic Snake and other hands-on materials, just a small sampling of those used in our classes. Learn more about the Science Fair.
Second Saturday on the Farm - Robotics in Agriculture. Saturday, March 8, 2014, 11am-3pm. The Agriculture History Project Codiga Center and Museum presented Second Saturday on the Farm, at the Santa Cruz County Fairgrounds. The free event featured a presentation by Learn to Discover on how robots are used in the agriculture industry in Santa Cruz County and around the world, plus LEGO building, robotic car races, programming, drawing a robot, competing sumo robots, hayrides, movies, practice cow milking, and other activities for children. Learn more about the Agricultural History Project.
The Hour of Code. 2013 Edition. In support of Computer Science Education Week, all of our classes featured a special opportunity for students to experience a taste of the wonderful world of programming, with fun activities and challenges. The opportunity to learn about programming was presented alongside a discussion of career opportunities and ways to continue to learn more on their own. Learn to Discover is a charter member of code.org. Learn more.
A Play Date With SCCMOD. On Nov. 1, 2013, Learn to Discover presented a wide range of science & technology activities in support of the emerging Santa Cruz Children's Museum of Discovery. The meet-and-greet fundraiser provided a wonderful evening of entertainment, complete with music, appetizers, hand-crafted specialty beers and a wine bar.
East Bay Mini Maker Faire. Makers, Creators, and Cool Stuff galore! October, 2013
Carmel Art and Film Festival. We enjoyed bringing robotics to Devendorf Park and animation workshops to the Carmel Youth Center on October 12 & 13, 2013.
Santa Cruz County Fair. 2013 Edition. We had a great time at the Fair. Folks of all ages came by to check out our robotics exhibit, operate our robots and check out our classes. Thanks to all for visiting us!