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[#PressRelease] Then and NAW: Face-to-face Astronomy Week celebration returns after two-year hiatus
BY EUNINE ELIZZE ARZAGA
The onset of the global pandemic caused dramatic and unplanned shifts in astronomy, not just in the Philippines but also in the entire world. As pandemic restrictions ease in the country, more face-to-face events are set to launch. One of which is National Astronomy Week (NAW) 2023, pioneered by the University of the Philippines Astronomical Society (UP AstroSoc). Five different events, two of which will be conducted on-ground, are guaranteed to give us an extraordinary experience and perspective of the cosmos.
As a duly recognized organization of the University of the Philippines Diliman, UP AstroSoc upholds its purpose of elevating the reach of space and astronomy to the general public. This is by conducting events such as International Observe the Moon Night (INOMN), Lakbay, and the upcoming National Astronomy Week (NAW).
Revolving around the theme "Astrobiology: Our Place in the Universe," NAW 2023 will tackle the role of astronomy in shaping our future and creating a better world for tomorrow's children. This topic is chosen by UP AstroSoc to fit PAGASA's official theme, "Breaking Barriers in Philippine Astronomy: Overcoming Adversity for a Better and Sustainable Development."
Heating up the rocket's engine is a series of online events open to educators or the general public. To begin, STAR TRAILS is an astrophotography contest aiming to capture the marvels of the sky from an Earthling's point of view. This open-to-all contest accepts submissions from February 01 to 18, 2023.
Following it is PARALLAX, a teacher's webinar that aims to strengthen educators' foundation in science literacy and provides an avenue for them to share and incorporate their own learnings with their students’. Educators across the country are invited to this Zoom workshop on February 11 from 1:30 to 4:30 pm.
Last on the series of online events is ORIONIDS, a trivia quiz game that tests the public's knowledge about cultural and societal aspects of astronomy. This will be held for three days, from February 13 to February 15, on UP AstroSoc's official FB Page.
Two years after the hiatus of face-to-face NAW celebration, the comeback was as interesting as it was. This year will mark the first time since March 2020 that UP AstroSoc will offer face-to-face NAW activities. Two events that will be held on campus are Big Bang and Take-Off.
Big Bang, an astronomy quiz show, builds on the foundation of high school students' knowledge about the universe. This will be held on February 18 at the University of the Philippines Diliman. At the same time, Take-Off, a water rocket-launching competition, will blast off to celebrate hundreds of years of space explorations and discoveries.
The past years saw a socially distant and virtual celebration of our place in the universe. NAW 2023 will be unparalleled because the cosmos will yet again be experienced with our feet on the ground and our eyes on the sky. After a two-year hiatus and an unstable trajectory caused by the pandemic, astronomy enthusiats look forward to reclaiming their celestial glories.
Telescopes, satellite plushies, binoculars, and a lot more await the winners of each NAW 2023 event. Register through https://tinyurl.com/UPAstroSocNAW2023 and download the official Handbook at https://tinyurl.com/UPAstroSocNAW2023Handbook. Want to support this stellar endeavor? You can purchase UP AstroSoc’s official merchandise at https://tinyurl.com/UPAstroSocNAW2023Merch.
Keep in touch with UP AstroSoc through their social media: Facebook (UP Astronomical Society), Twitter (@upastrosoc), and Instagram (@upastrosociety), and get a chance to sail among the stars, to infinity and beyond.
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