Geekpalooza! Top 8 Geeky Things to Do in Ottawa This Weekend (May 3-5) (UPDATED)

Credit: spydergrrl
Spring. That time of year when the young nerd emerges from her Winter hiding place (ok, her year-round hiding place) (ok, the basement) to cavort among her kind (ok, to stand awkwardly within proximity of her kind until someone attributes the wrong quote to the wrong Doctor or Star Wars episode and her fury unleashes itself in a torrent of inspired nerd references and sources). Ah, Spring.

Seriously, though. Now that we have seemingly leapfrogged over the Spring thaw into Summer-like conditions, it's time to shed all the layers and take our pasty white selves into the sun and enjoy the outdoors. Or grudgingly pass through the outdoors on our way to fantastic indoor activities. Either way, this weekend has a lot to offer and here is a quick list of my top geeky picks for the Ottawa region.

First of all, don't forget that Saturday is Star Wars Day! Make sure to greet your fellow nerds with May the 4th be with you :) The Dude has already informed me that a cape and lightsaber will be the ordre du jour. Don't say you weren't warned.

1. Free Comic Book Day (Saturday) - Yes, the day we nerds flock to our favourite comic book stores and stock up on free comic books! Oh, and not just a single free comic book. Nay, last week we came home with a bag fullFind out more in my post from earlier this week.

2. Code For Kids (Saturday) - I told you about this fantastic workshop yesterday, hosted by Shopify. It's sold out, so if you were lucky enough to get a ticket, congrats! And if you want to be in on future events, head over to the site and sign up for the mailing list. If you're there, make sure to say hi. I'll be with the kid in the cape and lightsaber ;)

3. Open Refine Workshop (Saturday) - If you're interested in Open Data but don't know how to clean up a data set, this workshop will help you develop readable, gorgeous data. Space is limited. Doh! Wrong weekend, this is May 25th!

4. Ottawa Train Expo (Saturday) - Carleton U Field House is the site for this crazy huge expo of all things model train. Hat tip to Diane Beauregard for the info!

5. World Labyrinth Day (Saturday) - My friend Ellen Grove told me about this one on the Twitters when I was tweeting about the nerdfest that is this weekend. Apparently people all over the world get together and traverse labyrinths to honour the day. Too bad Saunder's Farm isn't open yet, but if you're planning to take in a Jane's Walk, Ottawa has an actual labyrinth walk!

6. Food Chemistry Workshop (Saturday) - The Agriculture Museum is celebrating the opening of its new Learning Centre which includes a lab, an exhibit space and more. There are activities all day but the kewlest one is a hands-on workshop on food science called "The Chemistry We Eat" led by the Chemical Attraction educators.

7. Engineering Workshops for National Youth Arts Week (Sunday) - This one came to me from the wonderful Marybeth Baker. Artengine is holding a drop-in on Sunday afternoon in which kids can design and build paper circuitry, switches and buttons and learn how to solder and control lights. Even the littlest builders can get involved trying out "squishy" circuits (made with play-doh).

8. Iron Man 3 (starts Friday) - following your comic book extravaganza, it only makes sense to head to the movies to take in the third installment in the Iron Man series. Check the Ottawa showtimes.

BONUS: My friend Mike informed me that there is also Ottawa IT Camp on Saturday at Algonquin College. If you're into all things IT and want to learn a ton for only $25, now youy know what you'll be doing this weekend :) BTW, Mike is speaking on Mobile Security, so make sure to tell him I say HI.

So there you have it. Now, for the record, this started as a Top 5. Then people kept sending me more, so I actually hauled my tired self back downstairs when I was ready for bed and updated this with some additional items for you geeks. But if that's not enough for you, then head on over to the Ottawa Start Blog weekly roundup which has a bunch more suggestions (some equally nerdy, some less so like the Tulip Festival and the Ottawa Farmer's Market opening :) Honestly, there's so much to choose from, cloning might be required.

Wishing you a weekend full of geeky goodness whatever you choose to do, spydey.