Congratulations to Lynn Powers, Winner of the 2019 Las Cumbres Amateur Outreach Award!
Photos courtesy Lynn Powers
 
Congratulations go out to Lynn Powers of the Southwest Montana Astronomical Society, recently awarded the 2019 Las Cumbres Amateur Outreach Award from the Astronomical Society of the Pacific for her dedication to sharing the wonders of astronomy with the public!
 
Lynn is a Night Sky Network coordinator for her club, and has participated and led many astronomy outreach program in her home state and across the USA- and beyond! She has helped organize observing and activities with the "Stars Over Yellowstone" program, is a featured speaker at the "Dakota Nights" program in Theodore Roosevelt National Park, and even helped students in Montana connect with Russian cosmonauts on board the International Space Station as part of the OneSky program from Astronomers Without Borders. Lynn did essential work with the Citizen CATE citizen science project during the 2017 eclipse, helping train astronomers from Idaho and Montana to use dedicated equipment to photograph as much of totality as possible - and ended up taking some of the finest images of that historic eclipse.

geyser erupting in front of solar telescopes and observers at Yellowstone

We caught up with Lynn about her work and she had this to add about her passion for outreach:

"I enjoy interacting with the public in informal settings: at a table with an activity during an event, or looking through a telescope at the sun or a night sky object. I have a telescope for solar that has been used for a decade in many parks and has had many people, young and old, look through it. I've washed many sticky ice cream fingerprints off this scope, but hearing the excitement from a visitor when they've successfully looked through the telescope for the first time is priceless."

image of Lynn Powers adjusting her Dobsonian telescope

Lynn is also certified to work with NASA Moon rock samples, a handy qualification for this year's Apollo 11 celebrations, and they are a hit: 

"The Moon rock samples are fun to share...I'm a certified educator and have checked them out 4 other times to share around Montana.  We'll have been featured on the local news, letting people know that they are in town. I have an event planned at the Bozeman Public Library as an ending celebration for a "Universe of Stories" summer reading program.  Then I'll be out in Glendive, which is in eastern Montana, at their library for a showing, then on to the Dakota Nights Astronomy Festival at the Theodore Roosevelt National Park in Medora, North Dakota, where I'll also show the moon samples.  It's been a busy and fun summer!

My summer season is winding down soon, but I already have plans for events coming up in the fall (transit of Mercury) and 2020 in place. "

You can read more about Lynn's achievements and find out more about the Las Cumbres Amateur Outreach Award on the official award page. Congratulations, Lynn! 

Last Updated: September 5,2019
 
Logo for Night Sky Network featuring child and astronomer observing the skyNight Sky Network (NSN) member clubs are dedicated to bringing the wonders of space and NASA science to folks across the USA.NSN program participation provides clubs with tools and resources to assist in their public outreach. Interested? Join clubs and astronomy events near you, and may you have clear skies!

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The NASA Night Sky Network is managed by the Astronomical Society of the Pacific. The ASP is a 501c3 non-profit organization advancing science literacy through astronomy.