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CIERA News and Announcements  |  Ravinia 2016


On July 13, 2016 six graduate students from CIERA participated in Astronomy Night at Ravinia, which was organized by Northwestern alumnus Dr. Donald Lubowich, Coordinator of Astronomy Outreach at Hofstra University. The Chicago Symphony Orchestra performed a number of pieces inspired by the solar system, and concert-goers also got to view a high-definition movie from NASA on the big screens. Astronomy enthusiasts brought their telescopes and set them up along the sculpture path outside the tent area.

The evening kicked off with #AskAnAstronomer on Raviniaís Twitter feed, which was displayed on the big screen. Within the tented area, the CIERA students set up hands-on astronomy demonstrations, from a vacuum pump to show how objects perform in space, to a plasma globe which dazzled the crowds, among several other activities. The students enthusiastically engaged with the public, answering all types of astronomy questions, from the moment gates opened at 5pm, to the very end of the stellar evening at 10pm. Northwestern's Science in Society joined in the fun with a moon-dust demonstration and an art gallery of scientific images. Volunteers from Boeing gave away fun prizes via a trivia game and invited selfies with a life-size cardboard astronaut.

Read the pre-event Northwestern News Story, and post-event coverage in The Daily Northwestern.

Astronomy Night at Ravinia was last held four years ago. See the photo gallery from 2012.

Please click on a photo to see a larger version.

Graduate Student Michael Zevin
with curious learners

Plasma Ball Demonstration

Orchestra plays Holst's "The Planets"

Graduate Student Paul Williams

Paul Williams explains distances in our Solar System

Ravinia screens show #AskAnAstronomer Twitter Feed

Crowd at the Science
in Society tables

Science in Society tables

Future Astronomers

Therma-Chromatic demonstration

Our hardworking and
enthusiastic volunteers

Dr. Donald Lubowich

Cody Dirks and Michael Zevin
at the CIERA tables

Graduate Students Katie Breivik and Kyle Kremer at the gravity table

Graduate Student Katie Breivik

Kyle Kremer and Michael Katz

Kyle Kremer explaining how to measure distance with papertape

Kyle Kremer with vacuum
pump demonstration

Photos by Gretchen Oehlschlager.
Orchestra photo courtesy of the Ravinia Music Festival.