I just received my E-newsletter from American Scientist and saw that WGBH Boston and Sigma Xi have teamed up to help promote the idea of Science Cafes:
The joint venture is the product of an ongoing partnership that began in 2004. That's when Sigma Xi chapters around the country started holding informal public discussions in restaurants, pubs, coffee shops, science museums and other venues, drawing on themes presented in the PBS television series NOVA scienceNOW, produced by WGBH.
At Science Cafés, scientists and engineers share their expertise in a relaxed, friendly setting. Topics have been wide-ranging, from bird flu, human space flight, chaos and global warming, to the Irish Potato famine, green building, the ivory-billed woodpecker, honeybees and dark energy/dark matter.
I'm thinking it might be a good idea to get one of these going here in Susanville (I'm thinking Starbucks...). More information on organizing and maintaining a science cafe can be found at the Science Cafe website.