Yuri's Night 2014

on 04 April 2014

Every year, between April 4th and 12th, the earthlings are invited to celebrate "Yuri's Night", an event dedicated to commemorating the first flight of a human being - Yuri Gagarin - into  the outer space, as well as the first flight of a Space Shuttle. Both events took place on April 12th, at a distance of 20 years - 1961 and 1981.

The aim of "Yuri's Night" is to inspire the public conscience into appreciating the role of the outer space for a better future. In 2009, Yuri's Night was affiliated to the International Year of Astronomy, an event who in Romania coincided with 500 years from the birth of Conrad Haas, the head of the Sibiu arsenal and the inventor of the multistage rocket.

There is no standard recipe for celebrating Yuri's Night. From academic talks to sidewalk astronomy events and to dance parties, any decent space-related event qualifies. In the year 2009, for instance, in Timisoara and Cluj-Napoca the Carturesti bookshops hosted public meetings with astronomy and astronautics specialists, followed by sidewalk astronomy sessions. The Bucovat rural township hosted a science-fiction literary session for school pupils.

In they years passed from its first edition, events organised under "Yuri's Night" banner varied from massive parties in Los Angeles, San Francisco, Houston and Stockholm, to messages from the International Space Station, to symbolic cheers at the South Pole Station. The mass media from the whole world - CNN, BBC, MTV, NPR and XM Radio among others - covered this event.

Besides Yuri's Night, the Romanian Space Agency coordinates several other educational events - ranging from those under the aegis of the International Year of Astronomy to the World Space Week. ROSA hereby invitess the national and local mass media to popularize as much as possible these events with the public.

The persons who would like to organize activities dedicated to Yuri's Night between April 4-12th each year, are invited to register the event beforehand with the international site http://www.yurisnight.net and to contact the national coordinator of this event, Mr. Virgiliu Pop, researcher at the Romanian Space Agency, virgiliu.pop-at-rosa.ro .