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Plan B Activities
What do you do if you are hosting a Galilean Nights event that involves night sky observation and the weather report is not cooperating?
Well, there are always alternatives and things to do:
- Improvise a planetarium show to display the night sky as one could observe it with better weather. You can use Stellarium, a free open source planetarium for computers, which can be downloaded from this web page: http://www.stellarium.org/
- Give a talk about Astronomy: you can choose your favourite subject, but if you need inspiration you can use the presentations already done and available at the Galilean Nights web page in various languages! The topics of these presentations are the main objects of Galileo’s first observations: the Moon, the Sun, Jupiter and Saturn. http://www.galileannights.org/presentations.html
- Additional educational material and ideas for activities that can be very useful for your event are available here: http://www.galileannights.org/educational_material.html
- Bad weather can be a good starting point for interesting chats about Astronomy, Science, Galileo... pick your favourite subject! You can find general presentations about Astronomy already done in several languages on the IYA2009 web page: http://www.astronomy2009.org/resources/presentations/
- Over the Galilean Nights event, several Remote Observatories will be making their telescopes available to everyone worldwide. The public can control the telescopes and take photos of astronomical objects from the comfort of their own homes. You just need a computer with an internet connection. Find out more here http://www.galileannights.org/remote_observing.html
- At the telescope of HRC Kowsar.1 Observatory, Isfahan, Iran, in-house astronomy experts are hosting a live webcast with a guided tour of the night sky on 24 October, from 15:00 to 16:30 UT: you can show this webcast at your event. More information here http://www.universealive.com/universealive/galilean_nights.htm
- Several groups hosting events worldwide are also going to use twitter and facebook to report what they are seeing: you can follow them and what they are doing! Look out for the #GalileanNights tag.
- IYA2009 staff writer Lee Pullen will be live blogging on the Cosmic Diary web page http://cosmicdiary.org/galilean_nights, which is also available via rss feed [feed://cosmicdiary.org/galilean_nights/?feed=rss2], reporting about Galilean Nights events happening around Munich, Germany.
- An additional Galilean Nights blog with updates from the organisers of some of the events taking place worldwide can also be followed on the Cosmic Diary web page http://cosmicdiary.org/blogs/galilean_night
The fascinating night sky is not always cloud free, but our immense curiosity about it, and about the Universe we live in, never goes away. So be creative and find out more about Jupiter, the Moon and the Stars, just as Galileo did 400 years ago!