Fall… season of blazing leaves, grinning jack-o-lanterns, frosty mornings, and star parties! As the temperature drops (no mosquitoes!) and the sun sets earlier, it’s the perfect time to get a few of your friends and their telescopes together and gaze upward at the beautiful fall night sky.
A few friends in Edwardsville—the River Bend Astronomy Club, Cosmoquest.org, the SIUE STEM Center, and Edwardsville School District 7—will be gathering at Liberty Middle School on the night of October 19 from 7-9 pm to celebrate astronomy and all varieties of STEM. Come join in the fun! View star clusters, nebulae, the Moon, and even another galaxy through amazing telescopes, get to know some of the fall constellations, and try your hand at some astro-activities including citizen science with Cosmoquest! The event is free and open to the public.
And it won’t be just the Edwardsville folks having a great time under the starry sky. Groups across the United States will be hosting their own events as part of the 2nd White House Astronomy Night. The 1st White House Astronomy Night took place back in 2009. On that night, President Obama welcomed students, teachers, and amateur astronomers to the South Lawn to look through telescopes, view exhibits, and generally celebrate science, inspiration, and discovery. He kicked off the event by looking through a telescope at a double-double star in the constellation Lyra. This Monday, you can do that, too!
The beauty and vastness of the night sky have inspired so many. Countless scientists, teachers, engineers, artists, and more have looked up into space at some point in their lives and have seen something out there that set them on a path to discovery and wonder. Stop by Liberty Middle School on October 19 and share in the wonder. Stop by and be inspired.
P.S. All over the Internet you can download sky charts. Here’s just one http://www.skymaps.com/downloads.html Print one out and bring it with you on the 19th.