Thursday, 21 April 2011

The Last IYA2009 Event

(Last year, I promised to myself not to write any more blogposts after the Avatar review, although I had a lot to write about, including this one. As I resume regular blogging once again, this is first post I could think of. It's sixteen months too late , but as they say, it's never too late.)

As you all know, we had taken part in the 100 Hours of Astronomy and Galilean Nights as part of the International Year of Astronomy 2009. We also did other events to observe the IYA2009. The efforts of our organisation, Prof. Dhirananda Roy Study & Research Centre, were extensively covered in the press. So we were invited to various parts of West Bengal to hold events to popularise astronomy.

The last event we did in 2009 was particularly noteworthy because of its extent and the number of people it reached. It was one of the most popular events we held as a part of the IYA2009. It was held at a book fair on a public holiday. More than a thousand people were part of our event that evening

The day on which the event was held deserves special mention too: December 25. Was there a more perfect day to discuss science? Our goal was to reach out to as many people as possible. And that we did. The event was held in Barrackpore at the annual book fair. We started our event with lectures and subsequent Q&A session. We showed slide-shows on various topics related to astronomy. This continued for about an hour. Then began the main business of the day: sky observation.

And what an experience that was! People were extremely excited to have a look at the sky through the telescopes. Their reaction was very enthusiastic – no wait, I have no words to describe their zeal – it was something else altogether. I had promised that I'd show the sky to everyone present at the fair. At one point, it became quite hard to control the crowd! But the situation was always under control.  I must mention that some local students lent their assistance to us and their helpfulness definitely contributed to the huge success of the event.

At the end of the event, people were thanking us for giving them a rare opportunity to observe the sky. But the fact is, we were the ones who were really privileged, because IYA2009 provided us the opportunity to spread the wonder of the universe among people and interact with them. I shall say no more but leave you with some pictures of the event:


1 comment:

deepanshi said...

i should congratulate you for organizing such a big event nicely. you have now become a source of inspiration for many youth in India; especially for those who are very much interested in astronomy(that includes me too)!well done!
i hope you continue this great work..
do follow your dreams and keep working...all the best!:)
(the space lover who sent you a mail)