(Credit: By Wes Walkey)
Join us in our celebration of the International Year of Astronomy (IYA 2009) using our March Discovery Guide.
Each month we feature a separate Night Sky Network activity on this website.
Here are a few examples of what Night Sky Network amateur astronomy clubs across the US are doing right now.
At the Grand Opening of the Carrol County Public Library in Maryland, Skip Bird commented:
"Snow, ice and rain; not the best weather for a star party. But that didn't stop over 200 people from coming to our Westminster Astronomical Society, Inc. celebration. We set up a table with all sorts of enticing demonstrations including black holes, a planet scale model with our Sun banner, and our coveted replica Galileo telescope.
Most people were amazed that Galileo saw anything through his telescope at all."
The U. S. Air Force Academy Physics and Astronomy Club held a star party for the Discovery Canyon Campus 3rd Grade Class in Colorado. Devin Della-Rose had this to say about the impact of the star party on the kids: "Students created their own pocket solar system. They viewed Venus, the Moon, and nebulae through our 24 inch telescope, and learned about the constellations. The students are currently studying astronomy in science class, and had just learned about the planets. The pocket solar system demonstration was great reinforcement to what they had learned in school!
Kathy Rusert, of the Acorn Jr. Science Club in Arkansas, extolled about the classroom exercise held for the fifth and sixth grade students: "This 8 day event highlighting The International Year of Astronomy (IYA 2009) commemorates the 400th anniversary of Galileo's use of a telescope to study the skies and is dedicated to getting the world looking up.
The eighth graders are researching the Apollo Mission Program and creating a timeline of events. Many of our students are getting excited about attending Space Camp in Huntsville, Alabama later this month.
Acorn students are commemorating this event by learning about the night sky using the ToolKits provided by the Night Sky Network. In 1609 Galileo Galilei turned his telescope skyward and made astounding discoveries that changed mankind's understanding of the universe."
Learn more about the discoveries Galileo made, like what he discovered about Saturn, through your local astronomy club.