Meeting next week: KentPresents Ideas Festival

From August 16-18 (Thursday-Saturday of next week), I’ll be attending and speaking at the KentPresents Ideas Festival in Kent, Connecticut, a lovely area. The festival, founded by Ben and Donna Rosen, is a melange of interesting people from many fields and is dedicated to helping others: we receive no remuneration (nor do Ben and Donna), and the money from ticket sales goes to local charities.

There are both panels and speakers (list here); I’m one of the latter and will be talking about evidence for evolution and why the “theory” is hard for Americans to swallow.  On the front page you can see the lineup, and there’s several of these people I want to see and perhaps meet (I’ll be bringing my book to get it autographed for charity). Imagine a festival that includes Wynton Marsalis, Lesley Stahl, Michael Pollan, Harold Varmus, and Faye Wattleton, not to mention Henry Kissinger. Among the working scientists besides Varmus and me there will be Official Website Physicist™ Sean Carroll, and a number of people involved in conservation. And there’s a performance by the dance company Pilobolus.

It promises to be a good time. Tickets aren’t cheap ($2500), but the money goes to charity. You can, if you have the dosh, buy tickets for the whole event here.  I hope to report from the Festival, so stay tuned.



  1. GBJames
    Posted August 10, 2018 at 9:03 am | Permalink

    That’s a heck of a lineup!

    I was going to say “Too far for me to attend” but even if I lived next door I’m afraid it would be too far in economic distance.

  2. chris moffatt
    Posted August 10, 2018 at 9:11 am | Permalink

    Kissinger at a festival “dedicated to helping others”? whatever next?

    • George
      Posted August 10, 2018 at 9:37 am | Permalink

      I would not pay anything to see Kissinger. In addition to his past crimes, all he does now is give bad advice:

  3. alexithymicblogger
    Posted August 10, 2018 at 9:23 am | Permalink

    Is a summary of what is discussed available after the event? It sounds like a great event but both distance and cost are huge barriers.

    • Posted August 10, 2018 at 9:27 am | Permalink

      I think they’re taping the talks; I don’t know if they’ll put them on the Internet. Stay tuned.

  4. Randall Schenck
    Posted August 10, 2018 at 9:25 am | Permalink

    I see Preet Bharara on the list. He would have endless stories to tell and all would be very interesting.

  5. Ken Kukec
    Posted August 10, 2018 at 9:29 am | Permalink

    I’m one of the latter and will be talking about evidence for evolution …

    So up to your old tricks of bashing god-fearing Christians and undermining the morality of our youth? 🙂

  6. Simon Hayward
    Posted August 10, 2018 at 10:20 am | Permalink

    Harold Varmus under “Health and Food” rather than under science, that might be a first. Well, he’s always interesting and has plenty to talk about no matter where they put him.

  7. Posted August 10, 2018 at 10:51 am | Permalink

    Pilobolus is a curious name for a dance troop. Are they named after the common dung fungus of that name? (Which incidentally has a fascinating mechanism for spreading its spores away from its dung pat onto vegetation where they have a chance of being ingested by a herbivore).

  8. bugfolder
    Posted August 10, 2018 at 5:37 pm | Permalink

    Cool, here’s hoping I’ll get to meet you. (I’ll be there, too, talking about origami.)

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