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Sydney Museum and Science – International Year of Astronomy
2009 has been named the International Year of Astronomy, and Sydney has taken the title to heart.
The Sydney Observatory and observatory in New South Wales has a whole range of activities planned, which aim to make people aware of the beauty and wonder that nature has to offer. Before I get into the list, I thought I would say why 2009 has been named the International Year of Astronomy.
In fact, 2009 is 400 years since Galileo, arguably one of the most important astronomers in the field, turned his telescope to the stars and was adamant that the Earth revolves around the Sun, not the other way around.
That being said, 400 years later, very few of us understand or ponder where the world is in nature. Thus the need to encourage greater curiosity and wonder about the environment in which we live.
With ninety percent of Australia’s astronomy facilities currently located in New South Wales, it’s the perfect place to celebrate the Year of Astronomy and inspire this newfound interest in our children.
Join 2009, the International Year of Astronomy, and put your child on the path to intellectual exploration, giving them useful tools for an increasingly “astronomical” future. Take a look at these events and visit the closest locations, listed below.
Sydney Observatory April school holiday programme
Bring your kids to the Sydney Observatory this holiday, and we’ll see them in the universe! Children’s Planetarium A fun 30-minute frozen storytelling session in the beanbag planetarium. Sit back and marvel as you travel through time and space.
Treasures of the Sydney Observatory
Join us on a stargazing tour guided by stories about the tools that explorers and astronomers used to map the sky and the earth. Explorers and astronomers such as Matthew Flinders, James Cook and Henry Chamberlain Russell. The tour includes a 3D Space Tour through the universe.
Winter Solstice at Sydney Observatory
Celebrate the International Year of Astronomy at the Sydney Observatory. On 21 June at 3.46pm the Sun is at the northernmost point of the year. This is the day of winter, when legends begin and superstitions grow.
Sky’s The Limit: Astronomy in Antiquity
Many ancient religions and their myths revolved around the planets and stars as they looked to the stars to identify their world. Follow the stars and see how people use them to predict weather changes, track time and create calendars.
South Pacific Star Party
Since 1993 the Astronomical Society of New South Wales has hosted the annual South Pacific Star Party (SPSP). The Star Party gives those who play the game the opportunity to meet other amateur and professional astronomers, and see under the dark sky the best view of the night sky as it should be seen.
Space Exhibition – Powerhouse Museum
Open every day except Christmas Day. (Extreme opening times for public and/or school holidays.) The Powerhouse Museum Space exhibition explores the history of man’s desire to travel through Earth’s atmosphere.
Parramatta Park Astronomy Open Night
Come along to Parramatta Park Astronomy Open Night, a multi-award-winning public open night at Parramatta Park, on Saturday, 2 May 2009, from 6:30pm onwards.
Music is the Cosmos
Music and the Cosmos is a special event featuring astronomers from the University of Sydney’s School of Physics, and the SCM Chamber Music Ensemble. Celebrate the International Year of Astronomy with the Sydney Science Forum and the Sydney Conservatorium of Music.
Smart light Sydney
Smart Light Sydney is a free, self-guided tour. Walk from the Sydney Observatory through and around the scenic harbor area, taking in the colorful and colorful sculptures that use art.
Astrophotography on a budget
Astronomy photography doesn’t have to be expensive. Mike Salway (Ice in Space – Shooting space on a budget) reveals how you can get the most out of your equipment and take great photos on a budget.
Saturn Night Fever
Look through the telescopes of the Sydney Observatory and see naked Saturn without its rings, Alpha and Beta Centauri, the Taurus and Virgo galaxies and the universe of other celestial bodies, and see space like never before in the 3D Space Theatre.
Observatories in Sydney and NSW
Mudgee Observatory has been a private observatory for the past ten years although it is now open to school groups, organized tours and any member of the public who wishes to attend.
Dubbo Observatory gives you the chance to observe the moon and planets. Discover the Milky Way and beyond with the best telescopes in the West.
CSIRO Parkes Radio Telescope – ‘Dishes’
The famous Parkes Observatory, as seen in the Australian movie ‘The Dish’, has been a television station for almost 50 years, but is still considered one of the best telescopes in the world.
Darby Falls Observatory
Darby Falls Observatory is located on Observatory Road (off the road to Mt. McDonald) Darby Falls, Cowra. Open Friday, Saturday & Sunday nights and every school holiday night (weather permitting). Winter 7pm to 10pm, summer (daylight saving) 8:30pm to 11pm.
Green Point Observatory
Green Point Observatory is run by the Sutherland Astronomical Society (SAS) in Sydney, and consists of 41cm and 35cm telescopes. Green Point Observatory is open for meetings every Thursday evening, starting at 8pm, and visitors are welcome to attend the Guest Speaker.
Koolang Observatory and Space Science Center
Koolang Observatory and Space Science Center is located on the border of the Central Coast and Lower Hunter, less than two hours from most of Sydney and Newcastle. Koolang Observatory and Space Science Center is a public space observatory.
Macquarie University Observatory
Macquarie University’s North Ryde campus is open to the public on Friday nights from March to November inclusive, subject to booking, unless it rains. Please call to confirm on 0427 433 388 if the weather is in doubt.
Port Macquarie Observatory
The Port Macquarie Observatory is managed by the Port Macquarie Astronomical Association Inc., a voluntary not-for-profit association of people interested in astronomy. Astronomy Open Nights The observatory is open to the public on Sunday and Wednesday nights.
Australia Telescope Compact Array – Narrabri
The Australian Telescope Compact Array (ATCA), at Narrabri Observatory, is an array of six 22-m antennas used for radio astronomy. Located about 25 km west of the town of Narrabri in rural NSW (about 500 km north-west of Sydney), it is operated by Australian Telesco Read more.
University of Western Sydney Observatory
The University of Western Sydney (UWS) Observatory hosts public astronomy at night as well as school, holiday and community programs during the day or evening. The UWS Observatory is located at the University of Western Sydney, Penrith Campus, Great Western Highway, Werrington North.
Wollongong Science Center and Planetarium
The Wollongong Science Center and Planetarium is managed by the University of Wollongong as a science centre. In the center there is a planetarium (BlueScope Steel Star Theatre), an observatory, laser shows, many shows, theaters and much more.
Bathurst Observatory is located in two locations. One area is for research and research, while the other is for public viewing through the telescope, and also has a space exhibit in the new 200 room. The public viewing area is located on the Bathurst Goldfields site.
Crago Observatory is located on Mount Bowen near North Richmond (NW of Sydney), and is managed by the Astronomical Society of NSW. The observatory has a 40cm Dobsonian telescope, and is open on Saturday nights (near the Last Quarter Moon phase).
Visit the Linden Observatory in the Blue Mountains and join any of the WSAAG (Western Sydney Amateur Astronomy Group) night observations, where anyone can come in and check out their telescopes. The observance of the night usually takes place on the Saturday closest to the New Moon.
Siding Spring Observatory
Siding Spring Observatory is home to the world’s largest telescopes and Australia’s largest astronomical observatory. Siding Spring Observatory is located in the beautiful Warrumbungle National Park near Coonabarabran, NSW.
Warrumbungle Observatory, also known as “Tenby Observatory”, is located on the Timor Road leading into Warrumbungle National Park, 10 kilometers from Coonabarabran. The Warrumbungle Observatory has three Computerized telescopes including a 14 inch Telescope.
Introducing yourself and your child or children to the wonders of nature and understanding the place of the earth is a great way to emphasize how soft and wonderful life is on earth. Not only will you learn, you will find your jaw dropping at the wonder and images that the galaxy and the universe present to us every day, yet we don’t pay much attention.
Visit OnlySydney Museum and Science for listings and details of these 2009 International Year of Astronomy events and Sydney Observatories.
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