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Wednesday, May 4, 2016

Sanford Museum all about Astronomy

Monday, June 29, 2009

Linda Burkhart, Sanford Museum director, explains the Solar Scope that the kids will be using to view sun spots during the Museum's 93 Million Mile Sun Fun Club Day coming up on July 22 from 10 a.m. to noon. All ages are welcome to attend the free event, but preregistration is required by calling the Museum at 225-3922. Photo by Sarah Gengler.
The Sanford Museum is looking forward to a busy couple of months, with five different activities coming up that deal with outer space.

The Museum has been asked to host a traveling exhibit next month. Entitled "Outreach to Space," the exhibit features several learning stations for kids, with the topics being the planets, gravity, the sun, and distances in outer space.

The exhibit will be coming from a Waterloo science museum and will be set up at Sanford Museum from July 7 July 26. As usual, the exhibit is free to all patrons who wish to come and explore outer space with the Sanford staff.

On Wednesday, July 22, the Museum will feature a two-hour session for kids from kindergarten and up about the sun. The "93 Million Mile Club Sun Fun Day" will be directed by Kerisa Pingel and will have a variety of activities free to kids. The Museum will be using a solar scope that day to show kids a safe way of looking at sun spots. Sun spots can be found in the sun's photosphere. The photosphere is the outer - most edge of the sun, and the spots are the cooler areas found in the sphere.

"Sun spots flare up in a cycle every 11 years," Pingel said. "They aren't in flare up right now, but we will still be able to see some spots."

The two-hour activity will also allow kids to do crafts dealing with the sun and have a snack which will incorporate the sun.

"We are thinking about doing S'mores with a solar box," she said.

Case Moermond, 6, of Cherokee works on decoding a genetic message in the Sanford Museum's "DNA, Chromosomes and Genes" exhibit currently on display. Photo by Sarah Gengler.
The "93 Million Mile Club Sun Fun Day" is free, but pre- registration is required so that the Museum can purchase crafts in advance. Interested parties can easily register by calling the Sanford Museum at 225-3922. Just inform them that you want to be part of the 93 Million Mile Club.

Then on July 24, the Museum will be heading outdoors at night for "Astronomy Night," starting at 9:30 p.m. The staff of the Sanford Museum will be heading north of the CYSBA ball fields in the Sam Doupe Complex on Indian Street to set up telescopes for a night of looking at the stars. Once again, the public is encouraged to join in and the event is completely free.

The Museum will be celebrating the Perseid Meteor Shower on Wednesday, August 12, starting at 9 p.m. Once again, the staff of the Museum will be set up north of the CYSBA ball fields on Indian Street for the public to come and view a meteor shower "up close and personal."

Jaden Ebel, 6, and Kids Kamp Klub worker Mandy Burrington, look through microscopes to learn more about DNA, chromosomes and genes at the Sanford Museum on Wednesday. Photo by Sarah Gengler
Last but not least, the Sanford Museum is teaming up with the Prairie Heritage Center in O'Brien County for Astronomy Day and Night. The activities will begin at the Museum at 2 p.m. on September 19, and will conclude at the Heritage Museum with star - gazing and other activities.

Astronomy is an important topic right now with the Museum because it is also celebrating the 400th year anniversary of the telescope. The staff has incorporated as many activities as possible to allow the community to come and enjoy the birthday of the telescope and experience astronomy up close.

Although astronomy is an important topic, the Museum is also hosting activities this summer on other topics as well. On July 19 at 2 p.m., Mike Meloy will be sharing about his life in the Peace Corps while he was a volunteer in Moldova for the past two years. Meloy will be talking about the origin of the Peace Corps, their many locations throughout the world, and also about the history and culture of the Molodovan people.

For more information about these or any other upcoming activities at the Museum, please contact the Museum at 225-3922.

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