Apply now for your astronomy clubÂ’s free membership in NASA's Night Sky Network, a new program specifically designed for amateur astronomers. Selected clubs will participate in an online community of amateur astronomers engaged in outreach activities. Clubs receive free Outreach ToolKits from NASA on a variety of astronomy and space-related topics.
The last day to apply for the first round of memberships was February 29th. Second round applications will be accepted through June 30th, 2004.
What clubs are involved? Click here to see a map.
What are clubs using the materials saying?
Â“My compliments on putting the kit together ... The kit is terrific Â– simple, effective materials to show hard concepts easily."
Â“We are always looking for stuff like this... The hands-on stuff really means a lot Â– especially to kids Â– something they can see and touch.Â”
Â“This is like a treasure box to me!Â”
"I was really pleased at how complete the provided kit was. Other than copies, everything I needed for a successful presentation was provided. The instructions, video, and materials on the CD were complete and easy to understand."
Â“I expect people will be more likely to do outreach because of us having the kit.Â”
Jointly developed by NASA, the Astronomical Society of the Pacific (ASP), and an advisory team of amateur astronomy club members, the program also includes training, special opportunities for working with NASA scientists and educators, access to a dedicated website for communicating with other Night Sky Network participants, and public recognition by NASA for their outreach activities.
For more information and an on-line club application form, amateurs astronomers can go to How to Apply.
"NASA is very excited to be working closely with the amateur astronomy community," said Michael Greene, head of public engagement for JPL's Navigator Program, and PlanetQuest initiatives. "Amateurs want more people to look at the sky and understand astronomy, and so do we. Connecting what we do with our missions to the sense of wonder that comes when you look up at the stars and the planets is one of our long-term objectives. We have a strong commitment to inspiring the next generation of explorers. Lending support to the energy that the amateur astronomy community brings to students and the public will allow NASA to reach many more people."
Photo courtesy of Amy Bradley.