It’s October in New England, which means you’re most likely seeing jack-o-lanterns, apple-picking ads, and pumpkin spice everywhere, but there are other exciting things happening in fall as well! Starting on October 4 and going through October 10, the world is celebrating World Space Week!
“What is World Space Week?” you might be asking yourself. It’s a collection of events happening around the world that celebrate all we’ve gained from studying space and all of the excitement that comes with exploring space. The United Nations started Space Week in 1999, and since its creation, World Space Week has grown into a celebration that happens one week a year around the globe. In 2017 there were more than 3,700 events taking place in over 80 countries throughout the week. Each year World Space Week has a theme, and this year’s theme is “Space Unites the World.”
There are formal events all around the world, consisting mainly of stargazing evenings where amateur astronomers help you see some of the more easily recognizable nighttime sights. If you can’t make it to one of those events (and there unfortunately aren’t any happening in Massachusetts), you can create an event in your backyard, or right here on campus. Check out these list of event ideas to get yourself in the World Space Week mood! You can make paper models of satellites, host a space-themed movie marathon, create a space scavenger hunt in your residence hall, or visit the Museum of Science to see the Space exhibit (open through January 1, 2019). This article from Forbes might also come in handy if you’d like to find out what you can see in the October night sky.
To help you learn about all things space, we’ve put together a short list of titles that we have in the Libraries. We hope you’ll find something “out of this world.”
Life through time and space by Wallace Arthur
Cooking cosmos : unraveling the mysteries of the Universe by Asis Kumar Chaudhuri
Welcome to the universe : an astrophysical tour by Neil deGrasse Tyson
The cosmic microwave background : how it changed our understanding of the universe (physical and ebook) by Rhodri Evans
Computer simulations of space societies (ebook) by William Sims Bainbridge
Space capitalism : how humans will colonize planets, moons, and asteroids (ebook) by Peter Lothian Nelson
Don’t forget! October is the last time you’ll get to see the Milky Way until May (as stated by Forbes) and the moon won’t be present, making it easier to see sights in the northern hemisphere night sky. The Draconid meteor shower also begins on October 8 and is expected to produce around 10 shooting stars an hour, over the course of a few days. So get yourself outside and enjoy the sights of the night sky during Space Week!