Kalamazoo Section of the American Chemical Society

We are a dynamic and visionary organization committed to improving people’s lives in our community through the transforming power of chemistry.  We strive to advance the broader chemistry enterprise and its practitioners for the benefit of Kalamazoo, Allegan and Van Buren counties.

Chemistry and Culture: Elements of Dance

Friday 01 November 2013

Kalamazoo Institute of Arts
314 S Park St
19:00 - Check-in, refreshment and open dance
19:30 - Welcome remarks and showcase dances
20:15 - Open dance, activities and prizes
22:00 - Conclusion

A social event with exhibit on “Molecular Foundation of Movement”

This is a modification of last years wildly successful Elements of Dance. The details and results can be found on the event page

Download the event flyer here [PDF] and the event program here [PDF].

  • Free Admission
  • Free Snacks
  • Free Dance Lesson
  • Dance Showcases
  • Puzzles – Win Prizes!
  • Music: Ballroom, Latin, Swing & Country
  • Partner not necessary – No dress code
  • Open to the general public

The Exhibit

With "Molecular Foundation of Movement" we will connect atoms and molecules to exercise science. Where is the chemistry? Well, your muscles won't work unless you have iron, calcium and magnesium for example. Attendees can win a prize by completing a puzzle that is related to the information given in the exhibit.

The exhibit includes a special tribute to the work of Dr. Alfred Bader, entrepreneur, fine arts collector and philanthropist.

Event Program

There will be showcase dances with chemists, open dances, and line dances in the auditorium, among others. The exhibit and refreshments will be set up in the lobby. Everybody is asked to check in upon arrival. The full program can be downloaded here [PDF].

Interested in studying up before the big day? Here are some videos demonstrating the group line dances that will take place. Don't worry, the steps will be described during the event as well. The event is one day after Halloween. Feel free to wear your Sunday best or come in a Halloween costume.


Attendees can win in several ways

  1. Come early enough to enter a drawing for a door prize.
  2. Fill out the puzzle that is based on the exhibit in the lobby titled "Molecular Foundation of Movement".
  3. If you are a chemists you can enter a special drawing to win a free pass to a local ballroom dance.

This year's prizes are:

  • Trial membership to a local athletic club
  • KACS T-Shirts
  • AAAS T-Shirts
  • Elemental pins
  • Free pass to a local ballroom dance
  • Water bottles
  • Meg-A-Mole

Thank you Donors!

This event is made possible through generous donations from the American Association for the Advancement of Science (AAAS), Alfred Bader Fine Arts, Aldrich Chemistry, VWR, Western Michigan University, and the WMU Business Technology and Research Park.

Elements of Dance Logo

Why Chemistry and Culture?

Chemists are not just experts in their field but are also interested in art, history, cooking, baking, brewing, gardening and exercise, among others. “Elements of Dance” invites all chemists, chemistry enthusiasts and the general public to enjoy ballroom dancing. Future “Chemistry and Culture” themes will address topics like “Art Conservation”, “Forgery”, “Cooking” and “Gardening”, for example.

The goals of the "Chemistry and Culture" series are...

  • To offer a social networking opportunity for members of the Kalamazoo Local Section of the American Chemical Society (KACS) and the public
  • To educate the general public about the goals and activities of KACS
  • To highlight the connections between "chemistry" and "culture"
  • To encourage student participation
  • To instill an appreciation for how chemistry contributes to the world in many ways
  • To forge ties with the local community

Chemists who have looked beyond their field

Alfred Bader (Austrian-born Canadian chemist)
Founded the Aldrich Chemical Company, which later became Sigma-Aldrich Corporation as one of the world’s leading supplier of research chemicals. He founded the company’s journal Aldrichimica Acta in 1968. He is a philanthropist and a life-long fine arts collector. His artwork is displayed on the front cover of the company’s chemical catalogs and its journal. He authored two autobiographies titled Adventures of a Chemist Collector and Chemistry & Art.
Robert G. Bergman (University of California - Berkeley)
Made seminal contributions in inorganic and organometallic chemistry. He enjoys ballroom dancing in his free time.
Carl Djerassi (Emeritus Austrian-American Chemist at Stanford University)
Co-inventor of the hormonal birth control pill and has published several “science-in-fiction” novels. Together with Roald Hoffmann he authored the play “Oxygen” in 1999.
Roald Hoffmann (Polish-American Chemist at Cornell University)
1981 Nobel Laureate in Chemistry and a co-host of the TV series The World of Chemistry. He writes poetry and presents the monthly series Entertaining Science at a New York City café, which explores the connections between science and the arts.

Contact Elke Schoffers with questions.