OGDEN -- Baking soda and vinegar aren't just used for cooking and cleaning -- they're also used for making rockets.
Dozens of children attending Science in the Parks on Thursday afternoon gathered in a big circle while anticipating what might happen when vinegar and baking soda are mixed inside a plastic bottle.
"It causes all this pressure and bubbles to form, and it goes flying in the air," said 9-year-old Ramirez Hernandez. "That was so cool."
The free program, held at Lorin Farr Park this week, continues at other area parks for the next five weeks, said Adam Johnston, a professor of physics at Weber State University.
Science in the Parks began in 2007 as a way to spark imagination, creativity and interest in the field of science, Johnston said.
"In 2007, this was just something we wanted to try out, and it really took off," he said. "The kids love it, and now it's become tradition every summer for six weeks."
The event generates 4,000 to 5,000 visits each year, Johnston said.
"Some of those are repeat visits, since we spend one week at a time in the same park," he said. "Here at Lorin Farr Park, we typically get around 120 kids per day."
Each day, the kids experience something different.
Thursday was Move It day and included creating bubbles with wands, rope and PVC piping, flying things, rockets and spinning tops.
"I love blowing the bubbles," said Cassie Jessop, 9. "I blew some of them through my hands, and I even caught one of the bubbles and held it and twisted it around."
The bubble solution was made from liquid dishwashing soap, glycerin, water, surgical lubricant and other gooey ingredients.
"A lot of science is involved in the way bubble solution is made," said WSU student Mike Warby. "You can add a variety of ingredients to get the bigger size of bubbles, and no matter what shape you blow the solution out of, the bubbles always end up in a round shape."
Sara Huffaker, 8, was at the stomp rocket station. She said she liked watching how far her rockets would launch after she stomped on a special compressor.
"You really learn a lot about science at Science in the Park, and it's a lot of fun," she said.
Anthony Zenger, a student at WSU, said the stomp rockets demonstrate volume, pressure and compression in a fun learning environment.
"The faster you can compress the air, the farther the rocket will fly, and if you position it at a 45-degree angle, it will also go farther," he said.
WSU student JanaLee Moses showed kids how to manipulate a magnetic field. She also taught them how to make their own spinning tops.
Science in the Parks is sponsored by Weber State's Ott Planetarium and Center for Science and Math Education; the Ogden School District; Weber County RAMP, Utah Families Foundation and the Val A. Browning Foundation.
The Science in the Parks program runs daily from 11:30 a.m. to 1 p.m. Below are dates and locations for the free event:
* June 11-15: Liberty Park, 751 21st St.
* June 18-22: Monroe Park, 850 30th St.
* June 25-29: Jaycee Park, 2564 Fillmore Ave.
* July 2-3 and 5-6: Mount Ogden Park, 3144 Taylor Ave.
* July 9-13: West Ogden Park