Public outreach – otherwise known as a great excuse for wearing my astronaut flight suit that I got at space camp. On Saturday I spent some time at a local science expo for kids, helping out in the booth with telescopes, binoculars and handouts. It was very fun and rewarding. I always love to share this hobby with other people.
It always amazes me to see how open the kids are to new experiences. Like a carnival ride they can’t get enough of, they line up over and over to peek through a telescope aimed at a paper target on the ceiling. Outside Gary and Wayne, ever the troopers, stood vigil by their solar scopes, patiently re-aiming the telescopes time after time, after little hands grab the eyepiece. For hours in the cold they help hundreds of eager kids see something they may have never seen before – sunspots on the sun!
So here’s a challenge for all of you – find a way to share astronomy with someone. It could be a family member, a friend, or your child! You could simply share a beautiful moon, or find out when the ISS will be gliding by. Sometimes a little thing like that could spark interest. If nothing else, it’s a great way of spending time with your family.