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Wednesday, April 15, 2015 - Contact: 225-273-6439

Highland Road Park Observatory Hosts International Astronomy Day

Spend an evening among the stars as Highland Road Park Observatory, 13800 Highland Road, "brings astronomy to the people" at its ninth annual International Astronomy Day celebration on Saturday, April 25 from 3-11 p.m.


One day every year, astronomy clubs, observatories and other groups of sky lovers band together to expose the general public to the wonders and excitement of astronomy. Officially, Astronomy Day is celebrated "to promote the forerunner of all scientific endeavors and to provide information, resources, and encouragement in all facets of astronomy," but showing that astronomy is fun is really what it's all about. 


The observatory's International Astronomy Day celebration invites guest to explore a range of activities, including: Scope-on-a-Rope; homemade comets; a renaissance sundial; radio telescope demonstrations; a sky tour at dusk; and a slide and spacewalk. 


Exhibitors will include the Baton Rouge Gem and Mineral Society, the Baton Rouge Metropolitan Airport, the Baton Rouge Zoo, the Bluebonnet Swamp Nature Center and LIGO. The Baton Rouge Amateur Radio Club will also teach patrons to send their name using Morse code; Episcopal High's KnightVision Team will present the robot it entered in this year's U.S. First Robotics Competition; and St. Joseph's Academy will demonstrate 3-D printing.


Visitors can also participate in a special viewing of the sun, moon, Venus and Jupiter (weather permitting) and look through HRPO's 16-inch telescope, along with several smaller telescopes throughout the event. 


The event is free and features raffles, food and games on site for all ages. To fund the event, the Office of Charitable Gaming has approved the raffling of an Orion Skyquest XT4.5 Dobsonian Telescope. Tickets may be purchased at Highland Road Park Observatory at or prior to the event and purchasers do not have to be present to win.


Additional details and a full schedule can be found at http://hrpo.lsu.edu/programs/astronomy_day.html


For more information about this celebration, call the observatory at 225-768-9948. 


HRPO is sponsored by BREC, LSU's Department of Physics and Astronomy and the Baton Rouge Astronomical Society.

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