IGNORING black leather jackets in favor of white lab coats, more and more Canadian teenagers are getting their kicks from an impressively mature pursuit: assembling intricate exhibits for competitive science fairs.
This year, they'll show everything from model rocket-launchers to the brains of fish at fairs in Vancouver, Winnipeg, Toronto, Sarnia, Ont., and McMasterville, Que. But. with a national Science Fairs Council set up recently in Ottawa, chances are this kind of show will become almost as common — and almost as popular — as the spring prom. Next on the list will probably be Fredericton. N.B.. and Cornwall. Ont.
So far. there’s no all-Canadian winner declared, but last year. John l.ahow. a 15-year-old Forest Hill Collegiate student. won Toronto's first fair and was sent to the l). S. national finals in Con-
necticut. Labow’s entry, a beep-beeping scale model of a space satellite, won second prize: a week on a U. S. battleship.
In Canada, the winners get cash awards or scholarships. But there are other incentives. Sponsoring industries scout the exhibitors for likely future employees.
Most often, the youngsters say. they build their exhibits just to satisfy their curiosity. East year, a Vancouver girl took apart a fox carcass, boiled the hones and reassembled the skeleton for display.
In one year, the Toronto fair, sponsored by the Swansea, Out., Rotary Club and the Toronto Telegram, has grown to include all Ontario. Says a Rotarian: “If you talk to these kids for five minutes, you get an inferiority complex."
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