In spite of the bitter cold (or at least what used to qualify as bitter cold a week ago), more than 4,500 people made it to the Bell for Space Fest on January 19-20! Thanks to all who participated in our Year of Apollo kickoff, celebrating the 50th anniversary of the Apollo moon landing and all things space!
An additional 1,300 stargazers braved the frigid weather to watch the total lunar eclipse with us on Sunday night. We were lucky to have a clear, cloud-free sky for excellent viewing conditions. A special thanks to our volunteers, staff, student guides and partners from the Minnesota Astronomical Society for bringing extra observing gear for this special phenomena.
In case you missed it…
Check out some of our favorite photos and video from Space Fest:
Space Fest fun extended inside the Whitney & Elizabeth MacMillan Planetarium, too. Space Fest visitors got the chance to see two special shows, only on view during Space Fest.
Special guests speakers presented on everything from micrometeorites and aurora borealis to Martian microbes and NASA's airborne observatory (as seen here with former flight planner and mission director, Karina Leppik).
During a lunar eclipse, Moon passes through Earth’s shadow. The light peeking through our atmosphere makes Moon appear red. At Space Fest, you can make your own colorful shadows with the primary colors of light (red, green, blue)!
Many NASA artifacts were on view for Space Fest, including this Martian globe. In 1971, NASA's Mariner 9 spacecraft became the first spacecraft to orbit another planet. Mariner 9 mapped 85 percent of the Martian surface, and collected valuable information about Mars' surface and atmosphere.
Star gazing isn't just for the evening. UMN Earth Science and Astrophysics student Megan helped show off features of our Sun thanks to specially filtered telescopes out on the observation deck.
Real meteorites were on display for guests to take a closer look at objects that were once a very long ways away from the Bell Museum.
Some guests kept it terrestrial at Space Fest in the Touch & See Lab. Though, pondering life on our home planet often leads to thinking about the possibility of finding life elsewhere in the Universe.
Partners from across the University came out to share their passion for the cosmos, including the Minnesota Institute for Astrophysics.
A lunar eclipse occurs when Moon passes through Earth’s shadow, leaving what some call a blood red color. January’s eclipse also happens to be a Super Moon, when the full Moon is near perigee
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