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This Week's Facts:

  1. Program Encourages Environmental Stewardship

  2. Museum Provides Fun Tools for Youth Studying Science

  3. Indiana Photo ID Law in Effect for Primary Election

  4. Free Consumer Handbook Offers Spending Advice

Smithsonian Opens Portal to Earth's Ocean Life

The Smithsonian Institution’s Museum of Natural History and 20 other contributors have created a beautiful online Ocean Portal. Adults and youth alike will appreciate its clear writing and crisp photos amid a colorful underwater environment. The Ocean Over Time is a section that shows how far back in time ocean life has gone. The Ocean and You focuses on the impact humans have on changes in the ocean. A special Educator’s Corner portion of the website includes lesson plans, activities and links to other resources outside of the Ocean Portal. The site also has its own blog and photo essay sections.


Friday Facts Editorial Team:

Katharine Springer
State Data Center Coordinator

Elisabeth O’Donnell
Documents Librarian
Kim Brown-Harden
Documents Coordinator

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Program Encourages Environmental Stewardship

Take Pride in AmericaAs part of a program to keep American beautiful, the Department of the Interior along with several other government agencies is working on the Take Pride in America program.  The goal of the program is to help build volunteerism in our national parks, forests, lakes, refuges and monuments.  By providing a concrete system of volunteer opportunities, it is hoped that more people will take part in stewardship and conservation initiatives.  Take Pride in America is also affiliated with, a website that provides information about volunteer programs around the country.  You can search by location, date, agency or type of project that you are looking for. 

Museum Provides Fun Tools for Youth Studying Science

Museum of Science & IndustryThe Museum of Science and Industry in Chicago, IL maintains an Online Science section of their website to help youth get interested in science. Young patrons can help Twitch the robot find parts to build simple machines with the Simple Machines game. Feed Twitch a snack, and then help him discover the right trajectories, use axles & wheels, and learn to use a pulley. At the end of the game, win free digital wallpaper for your computer screen. Videos of the museum’s Baby Chick Hatchery are also available for your viewing pleasure. Learn to make a hot air balloon, ice cream, a submarine, and slime on the website’s Activities page.

Indiana Photo ID Law in Effect for Primary Election

Know the Indiana Photo ID LawThe primary elections will be held on Tuesday, May 4th.  Are you ready?  Indiana’s Photo ID law, P.L. 109-2005, requires all Indiana residents to present a government-issued photo ID to vote on Election Day.  To comply, the ID must meet four criteria:  1) Display your photo; 2) Display your name; 3) Display an expiration date and either be current or have expired sometime after the date of the last General Election (November 4, 2008); 4) Be issued by the State of Indiana or the U.S. government.  An Indiana driver’s license, photo ID card, military ID or U.S. passport should satisfy this requirement.  There are also requirements for college students who want to be involved in the voting process.  If you need a photo ID or want to know your closest license branch, click here.  You may also be exempt from the photo ID law if you meet certain criteria – be sure to find this out before you go!  Remember to exercise your right to vote and cast your ballot. 

Free Consumer Handbook Offers Spending Advice

Federal Citizen Information CenterThe 2010 Consumer Action Handbook is here!  This is a great source for those who are looking to improve their habits as consumers.  Whether you are interested in filing consumer complaints, understanding credit or even helping to prevent identity theft, this is a great source to turn to.  The best part is that it’s free from the Federal Citizen Information Center.  There’s a very simple online form to fill out when ordering and you can order up to ten at a time.  It is also available for viewing on the website as a PDF.  Finally, you can even order Spanish editions of the book.

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