NASA Night Sky Network Astronomy Clubs Reach Almost Two Million People!
Seeing the Sun safely through a telescope is an unforgettable treat!
Photo: Héllen Távora

Isn't it a fun surprise to walk up to a public building and see a telescope? Tony Iannone, member of the South Florida Amateur Astronomers Association is showing these girls the Sun. He's at the Museum of Discovery and Science in Fort Lauderdale, an organization that the astronomy club collaborates with on a regular basis. The club is part of the NASA Night Sky Network, managed by the Astronomical Society of the Pacific (ASP), and made up of over 350 astronomy clubs across the U.S. Through club outreach, they've reached almost two million people over the years!

Many people never get to see the Sun through a telescope, but as the Night Sky Network expands its outreach, more and more people will get to enjoy the Sun in a safe way, through properly filtered telescopes and educational demonstrations done by NSN members. The ASP provides the ToolKits for the demos, and the amateurs share their passion and knowledge of the sky. Looking through a scope is one of the best ways to do outreach, says Dean Regas, NSN member, host of PBS' Star Gazers and Outreach Astronomer for the Cincinnati Observatory Center.

Even though it's icy cold in many parts of the U.S., the clubs continue their public stargazing. If you've never been to a stargazing event, bundle up, brave the cold, and stargaze! Find an event right here on the NSN website, or use Go StarGaze, the iPhone app. Want to be part of the online stargazing community? We're on Facebook and Twitter.

Psst! Mark your calendar for the Transit of Venus, on June 5, 2012. You'll want to see the transit with a Night Sky Network club, because they'll have all the safe solar viewing gear.

Wishing you clear skies and a star-dust holiday season!