The 61st Annual California State Science Fair will be held at the California Science Center in Los Angeles April 30-May 1, 2012. Each year, hundreds of students from more than 400 schools throughout California compete in the two-day event that recognizes the state's best student research projects. 

The California State Science Fair is the final science fair of the academic year for students throughout the State of California in grades 6 - 12.

They expect approximately 980 participants from over 400 schools throughout the State to meet in competition for awards totaling $50,000.   When I was in school the only prizes were textbooks that we wouldn't be able to use in college anyway - and we still wanted them because it was advanced lore kids in a small town did not otherwise get.  Money still would have been cooler, though.

One year I placed second in the physics challenge by guessing - I was in a lot of events and many of them overlapped so I had to get to the next one, thus I had to be pragmatic.  Luckily it was a buoyancy calculation and I was able to narrow it down because it was either going to be floating a little more or submerged a little more. Beyond that, I got lucky.