The Daily Planet Café Unveils Upcoming January Science Café Events

Rocky Top Hospitality’s Downtown Raleigh Restaurant to Host Four Science Talks on Discovery and Innovation

Raleigh, NC, January 05, 2013 --( Dean Ogan, owner of Rocky Top Hospitality (, has announced that The Daily Planet Café will host four science talks throughout the month of January, with topics focused on wearable robotics, acoustical communications in birds, poetry through the lens of science and invasive pythons in the United States. Each of these events will be led by experts in their respective fields and will conclude with a Q&A session in which the audience can ask specific questions to learn more.

The first event, Wearable Robotics, will be held on Thursday, Jan. 10 at 7 p.m. The discussion will feature scientists from the Human PoWeR (Physiology of Wearable Robotics) Lab for a demonstration of a thought-controlled, lightweight, air-powered exoskeleton. Participants of the discussion will have the opportunity to “test-drive” thought-controlled artificial muscles. Leading the discussion will be Gregory S. Sawicki, Ph.D., an assistant professor of biomedical engineering at NC State University and director of the Human PoWeR Laboratory, and Ben Robertson, a third-year Ph.D. student in the Human PoWeR Laboratory.

A discussion centered on acoustical communication in birds will be held on Thursday, Jan. 17 at 7 p.m., This program will focus on birds’ unique organ, the syrinx, and the other adaptations for acoustical communication birds have made over the last 400 years. Leading the discussion will be Ted Simons, a professor and assistant unit leader in the USGS Cooperative Fish and Wildlife Research Unit, and a member of NC State University’s department of biology.

Poetry Scope will be held on Thursday, Jan. 24 at 7 p.m. and will combine both poetry and science, as seen through the eyes of five Triangle-area poet scientists. With a broad range of backgrounds and interests, these poets will read and discuss their science-inspired poems, which were selected from more than 50 submitted for consideration because of their scientific content, connection to the museum and diverse representation of the natural sciences.

The final January science café event, Invasive Pythons in the United States, will be held Thursday, Jan. 31 at 7 p.m. Featuring Dr. Mike Dorcas, a professor in the biology department at Davidson College in Davidson, N.C., this event is for reptile lovers. The discussion will center on the growing population of Burmese pythons, which can reach lengths of nearly 20 feet and weigh more than 200 pounds, and other major issues surrounding this invasive predator.

“We are looking forward to kicking off 2013 with a number of interesting and diverse scientific discussions at The Daily Planet Café,” said Ogan. “These upcoming events will provide guests and participants an in-depth look at some interesting and important topics that will expand the knowledge base of everyone in attendance. We are excited to have these great guests participate with us as we take the opportunity to showcase local scientists and relevant discussions.”

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- Located inside the North Carolina Museum of Natural Sciences, The Daily Planet Café frequently hosts discussions about science. The events are free and open to the public.

About Rocky Top Hospitality:
Rocky Top Hospitality restaurants have consistently rated among the Triangle’s most popular local dining choices since its first restaurant opened in 1998. The Rocky Top Hospitality name includes a variety of unique restaurant concepts, such as The Daily Planet Café, The Twisted Fork Grill, Market & Bar, and Rocky Top Catering & Events, a thriving events facility and catering business. All Rocky Top restaurant menus provide items not found anywhere else, and focus on using local North Carolina beef, seafood, poultry, pork, dairy and organic produce. Pastas and desserts are made daily, in house by the chefs and never come out of a box. Rocky Top beef and pork have had no growth hormones, additives, antibiotics or chemical feed. Owner Dean Ogan is known for actively giving back to the community and was named the 2011 Restaurateur of the Year by the North Carolina Restaurant and Lodging Association (NCRLA).

Anjelica Cummings
MMI Public Relations
(919) 233-6600
Rocky Top Hospitality
Patty Briguglio