Per Matt
Prepare for an intergalactic battle as Nashville’s Adventure Science Center hosts the ultimate sci-fi Way Late Play Date on Thursday, July 28th from 6:30PM to 10PM. Star Wars vs. Star Trek features the best elements of science fiction and science fact in a themed adults-only party that hopes to judge which film franchise’s fandom is most popular.

General admission tickets are $20 for members and $30 for not-yet members, which include admission to all exhibits and activities, three beverage tickets, a planetarium show and a souvenir cup. Attendees are encouraged to dress as their favorite big-screen characters and participate in the themed costume contest. There will be mini trivia games starting at 7PM and running throughout the night, as well as a digital gaming room provided by long-time Way Late Play Date patron Brian Wessels. Expect tickets to sell out, as previous similar-themed events had more than 900 people in attendance, so get them while you can.

Events Manager Jennie Stumpf previews what’s in store for this Way Late Play Date:

What’s new for this year’s Star Wars vs. Star Trek?
– “This one is going to be especially cool. We are working with Rebel Legion, who is bringing us some Jedi, some Star Trek folks and they’re doing trivia for us in Jack Wood Hall. It’s the real fans, the real-deal people, who are asking the questions and wearing the costumes. They’re even planning to bring a to-scale R2-D2. We’re also working with the 501st Legion, so we’ve got the Dark Side represented, as well. Another big addition, this time, is having three local breweries at the event.”

This will be the first time in many years that three breweries will be present.
– “We love working with local breweries. New Heights Brewing is opening up a taproom just around the corner from us, so I think we both saw it as an opportunity to partner up. We were more than happy to add them to the lineup with Fat Bottom and Mayday, who are also coming out to the event. We just want people to have more options… a little extra to choose from.”

Do you know what styles of craft beer New Heights will bring?
– “I believe they are bringing their IPA and a cream ale, which I’ve heard are both excellent.”

What does it mean to have craft breweries partnering with Adventure Science Center events?
– “The Adventure Science Center is celebrating its 70th anniversary this year. As we grow, it’s important to us to stay involved in the Nashville community, which is growing so much. The craft-beer scene is big part of that. We love working with community partners, so rather than picking up sort of generic-brand beers, we would much rather make those relationships with local people. And craft beer is also just really good. We love working with Fat Bottom and Mayday Breweries, and now New Heights.”

Photo courtesy of Adventure Science Center

Photo courtesy of Adventure Science Center

What did you think of the previous Way Late costume contest?
– “We have a new partnership with Hypericon for the costume contest and they are great! They’re the pros, so we know we are in good hands. We do have some new ideas for how to make it even better, this time. We plan to move the contest back to the Space Chase exhibit area, which makes for such a cool setting and also allows for more people to see it.”

What will be shown in the planetarium for this event?
– “We’ve got a new planetarium manager, who came to us from the Adler in Chicago. He has done so many different cool events and shows there, and has a lot of ideas on how to make the planetarium aspect even more cool and exciting for our Way Late Play Dates. He wants to try something new in the planetarium. Just know it’s space related, it’s Star Wars related and it’s got a live component that is just for our Way Late Play Date guests.”

What are some of the themed educational activities for this event?
– “Our educators are awesome. They’ve tried to plan activities obviously on the theme, but also on our current exhibits. Just coming out to see the Science Center is cool, but obviously, if you can learn about the science behind these big franchises that you know and love, that will make the experience that much more unique and fun. They are tackling all different topics, discussing the evolution of the Wookie, because we have a great new exhibit about the evolution of dogs. We’re also looking at the vacuum of space, a theme that was covered in Star Trek, and the technology and weaponry in both series. I’m really excited about looking at lightsabers, lasers and making a hologram. We’ve done this for one other event, on a small scale, but we’re looking at doing this on a large scale.”

Which side holds your allegiance?
– “You know, I love the new Star Wars movie. I want to say that’s where my loyalties go, but I’m pumped about the new Star Trek film. I think that’s what’s going to be fun about the timing of this event. The Star Trek movie is coming out the week before our Way Late Play Date. Both franchises have these long-time loyal followings, but with the new movies coming out, there’s a whole new surge of fandom. We had our last Star Wars vs. Star Trek Way Late Play Date two years ago, and like every good sequel, you’ve got to wait a couple of years. So, I think the buzz is out there.”

For More Information:
Way Late Play Date Event Information