Event Rental


Chain Reaction Team Registration

Friday, November 29, 2013, 1 – 4 PM
Rockwell Cage Gymnasium
120 Vassar Street, Cambridge, MA 02139



$15 for adults.
$5 for children ages 5-17, students, seniors and MIT ID-holders.
Free for children under 5.

Spectator fee includes free same-day admission to the MIT Museum, open until 6:00 p.m.

Parking will be available at West Garage (125 Vassar Street) for $5.

Official F.A.T. 2013 T-Shirts will be on sale courtesy of Ted Wilson of Michigan Shirt Works.


Whether it's the reaction induced between one creative contraption and another equally crafty contrivance, or the joyful reactions sparked on the faces of the spectators, the MIT Museum's Friday After Thanksgiving (F.A.T.) Chain Reaction is a one-of-a-kind, must-be-seen-to-be-believed engineering feat.

Artist/inventor Arthur Ganson masterminds the choreography of this Rube Goldberg machine, assisted by MIT teams and participants who range from Girl Scout troops to artists and engineers. Spectators talk to the teams, engage in hands-on activities, and fill the seats waiting for the magic moment when all the machines are linked up to set off a chain reaction with a surprise ending.

This is a great family event where "kids" of all ages enjoy watching, playing and making things at F.A.T. In years past, more than 1,500 people attended this unique event!

Guidelines for Teams

Team Admission (up to 4 team members):
  • Pre-registered: $12 in advance (opening September 2013) or $15 at the door
    Additional team members, $5 each (in advance or on-site) up to a maximum of 8 people per team
  • Each student team gets one free admission to the event for a chaperone. Other accompanying adults, students, seniors or children are expected to pay for admission (see spectator admission fees above)
  • Accompanying adults (parents, relatives, friends) of team participants who are not listed as team members are expected to pay for admission to the event. Each student team gets one free admission to the event for a chaperone.

Each link should stay within certain guidelines in order to connect effectively to other teams' links.

Download FAT 2013 Chain Reaction Guidelines (pdf)

Your chain reaction could be as simple as books falling against one another or as complicated as a Rube Goldberg invention. Look at the Game MOUSETRAP, the Japanese TV show Pythagoras Switch, or IDEO's Incredible Global Rube Goldberg Chain Reaction Experience. See also the music video This Too Shall Pass by OK Go.

New for 2013:

On Friday, October 11 from 5:00 p.m. to 8:00 p.m., join Arthur Ganson at the MIT Museum's Second Fridays program and bring in materials to start developing your link as well as creating a mini Chain Reaction right in the Museum!


E-mail: museuminfo@mit.edu
or visit Arthur Ganson's F.A.T. Advice page


Fill out this form to register your team for the Chain Reaction.

The Day of the Event:

Bring your chain reaction to the event site at 11:30 a.m. and we'll connect your device to others to make one grand chain reaction. MIT engineers and Arthur Ganson will be on hand to help. Participants will set up their links between 11:30 a.m. - 1:00 p.m., then introduce their teams to the audience, demonstrate their links and tinker from 1:00 p.m. – 3:00 p.m. We will set off the grand chain reaction at 3:30 p.m.


Parking is available in the West Garage on Vassar Street across from Rockwell Cage Gymnasium, or on the surrounding streets (metered rates apply). Food is not allowed in the Rockwell Cage gymnasium; however, Central and Kendall Squares offer numerous dining options before and after the event. All MIT facilities are wheelchair accessible.

Videos from Past Years

2006 Chain Reaction | 2007 Chain Reaction | 2008 Chain Reaction | 2009 Chain Reaction | 2010 Chain Reaction | 2011 Chain Reaction | 2012 Chain Reaction | 2013 Chain Reaction

The Council for the Arts at MIT provides principal funding for F.A.T.