Astronomy Day: A Grass Roots Movement

The Astronomical League is an umbrella organization of amateur astronomy societies. Their membership consists of more than 240 organizations across the US. This was their website for a number of years.
Content is from the site's archived pages.

You can now find the most up-to-date information regarding events, see astronomical related products at their online store, and become a member at their new site:

Regions of the Astronomical League

The Regions of the Astronomical League provide a place for amateur astronomers to meet other astronomers in the same area and learn from each other. Each Region has its own regional officers and its own regional convention.

Join in Astronomical League activities in your area!


  • Great Lakes Region
  • Mountain Astronomical Research Region
  • Mid-East Region
  • Mid-States Region
  • North Central Region
  • North East Region
  • North West Region
  • South East Region
  • South West Region
  • Western Region


Fact Sheet

Astronomy Day is a grass roots movement designed to share the joy of astronomy with the general population - "Bringing Astronomy to the People." On Astronomy Day, thousands of people who have never looked through a telescope will have an opportunity to see first hand what has so many amateur and professional astronomers all excited. Astronomy clubs, science museums, observatories, universities, planetariums, laboratories, libraries, and nature centers host special events and activities to acquaint their population with local astronomical resources and facilities. Many of these events are located at non-astronomical sites; shopping malls, parks,urban centers—truly Bringing Astronomy to the People. It is an astronomical PR event thathelps highlight ways the general public can get involved with astronomy - or at least get some of their questions about astronomy answered. Astronomy Week encompasses Astronomy Daystarting on the previous Monday and ending on the following Sunday.


In 2007, the League started promoting both a Spring and Fall Astronomy Day to see which one worked better for Astronomy Day hosts. Groups may host events on either or both dates. Spring Astronomy Day occurs sometime between mid April and mid May on a Saturday near or before the 1st quarter Moon. Fall Astronomy Day occurs sometime between mid September and mid October. Astronomy Week was created to give sponsoring organizations a longer period of time to host special events. Some local Astronomy Week celebrations have actually been longer than just one week.


Astronomy Day events take place at hundreds of sites across the United States. Internationally England, Canada, New Zealand, Finland, Sweden, the Philippines, Argentina, Malaysia, Iran, Ireland, New Guinea plus many other countries have hosted Astronomy Day activities. Each location plans and executes events that work best for their local area. To locate the nearest event or to list your events see:



Activities have included talks by astronauts, astronomers and NASA personnel, Moon rocks, a Moon gravity simulator, games, prizes, astronomical food, scale models of the solar system, space hardware, space ballets and poetry and, of course, actual outdoor observing (daytime and nighttime) with a telescope. Daytime observations include SAFE ways to observe the Sun. Many organizations host elaborate exhibits at shopping malls, museums, nature centers, libraries, etc. Teachers have used Astronomy Day to promote the study of astronomy with their classes.



Astronomy Day was born in California in 1973. Doug Berger, then president of the Astronomical Association of Northern California, decided that rather than try to entice people to travel long distances to visit observatory open houses, they would set up telescopes closer to where the people were - busy locations - urban locations like street corners, shopping malls, parks, etc.

His strategy paid off. Not only did Astronomy Day go over with a bang, not only did the public find out about the astronomy club, they found out about future observatory open houses. Since the public got a chance to look through a portable telescope, they were hooked. Then wanted to see what went on at the bigger telescopes, so they turned out in droves at the next observatory open house. Assistance The Astronomical League maintains an office to assist groups who want to host special Astronomy Day events. This office attempts to gain publicity for the day in general and, in cooperation with Sky & Telescope magazine, the Astronomy Day Headquarters has a free handbook listing ideas, activities, resources and suggestions for groups wishing to host Astronomy Day events.


Astronomy Day

The next Astronomy Day this year is April 20, 2013 and on October 13, 2013. Local astronomical societies, planetariums, museums, and observatories will be sponsoring public viewing sessions, presentations, workshops, and other activities to increase public awareness about astronomy and our wonderful universe.


Astronomy Day Events - April 2013

Unless otherwise noted all events occur on Sat. April 20, 2013




Sierra Vista Public Library, Sierra Vista

The Huachuca Astronomy Club of Southeastern Arizonza will conduct daytime solor viewing, a solar-system scale 'walk' to the dwarf planet Pluto, and astronomy exhibits at the city of Sierra Vista's Public Library, close to City Hall.  Contact the club (HAC) at P.O. Box 922, Sierra Vista, AZ, 85636



Astronomy Day 2013, 950 Trout Brook Drive, West Hartford

The Children's Museum and Travelers Science Dome Planetarium invite visitors to our all-day, family-fun Astronomy Day 2013 celebration on Saturday April 20th. Planetarium shows and hands-on astronomy activities will be presented. For details and the Astronomy Day 2013 schedule of events,please visit The Children's Museum homepage at



Astronomy Day Festival, 2 Canebrake Road, Savannah 

Join the Oglethorpe Astronomical Association at the Coastal Georgis Botanicla Gardens for a day of stargazing! We will have scopes set up for daytime viewing, seminars on how to gaze and other stargazing related topics, activities for children and other fun events. The day will be capped off by a 1950's sci-fi movie and night time viewing. Call (912) 921-5460 for more information. 


Astronomy Day, Moline Public Library, 3210 41st. St., Moline

Please join the Popular Astronomy Club at the Moline Public Library, 3210 41st. St., Moline, Illinois as we celebrate National Astronomy Day from 2:00 pm---5:00 pm.    There will be make & take crafts, comet making demonstrations, displays including items on loan from NASA,  and guest speakers.    Outside we will have solar observing (weather permitting) with our mobile observatory and club equipment.     Door prizes and refreshments will be available.  Join us for this free, educational, and family friendly celebration of astronomy!     In the evening, join us at the Niabi Zoo as wecontinue our Astronomy Day activities with a Tour of the Night Sky from dusk until 11:30 pm.  (weather permitting)

We like to especially thank the CleanItSupply company. We are so fortunate to have found them. We used to buy all our cleaning supplies from Grants Downtown, but our local merchant closed last year. When we ran out of garbage bags, we decided to compare prices online. We searched for "garbage bags online" and from that moment on, they have been providing us will all our cleaning supplies, including all the paper plates, paper napkins, etc. used in this event. At last year's New Years Celebration, they donated all the paper products (plates, napkins, plastic utensils,and much more) required to feed over 100 people. So we're happy to give them a small bit of publicity and a good review.

For more information visit our website:


Astronomy Day Event, Harper College, Palatine

ou are invited to join the Northwest Suburban Astronomers and Harper College explore the wonders of the universe on Astronomy Day 2013.  Saturday, April 20th - RAIN or SHINE. The event is free and all ages are welcome.

Telescope viewing (weather permitting) at the Karl G. Henize Observatory on campus and NSA club member telescopes will be available. NSA members will be on hand to answer any questions and conduct tours of the night sky. Inside the school will be a wide variety of shows, demonstrations, and exhibits.

There will be displays and astrophotos, astronomy programs, projects for children and planetarium dome to simulate the night sky. We look forward to you joining us, as we provide an informative and entertaining celebration o fastronomy.

  • Telescopes on Display
  • Campus Observatory
  • Planetarium Dome
  • Astronomy Lectures
  • Displays and Photographs
  • Projects for Children

The Northwest Suburban Astronomers maintains a strong tradition embodied in our motto “to cultivate, foster and promote interest and participation in astronomy” for over 30 years.  This Astronomy Day event is well attended, so plan to come early and stay late...

WHERE: William Rainey Harper College

Building Z

Algonquin Road Entrance

Parking Lots 2 & 3

Palatine, IL

WHEN: Saturday April 20, 2013

Time: 5:30 PM with programs at 6:00, 7:00, and 8:00

Cost: FREE

Please visit our website at:


7th Annual International Astronomy Day, 13800 Highland Road, Baton Rouge

Join HRPO for its seventh annual IAD celebration! We'll have special exhibits from the Baton Rouge Amateur Radio Club, the Baton Rouge Gem and Mineral Society, the Baton Rouge Metropolitan Airport, the Baton Rouge Zoo, the Bluebonnet Swamp Nature Center, the Civil Air Patrol, LIGO, the LSU ChemDemo Program, the Society of Physics Students, the Southern Regional Climate Center and others. An eighteen-foot dry slide, a spacewalk and the irreplaceable GyroXtreme are all returning! The brand-new Coronado Solar Max II telescope will premiere, showing the public amazing views of the Sun during this year of peak solar activity. Viewing of the Moon, Jupiter and Saturn will also talk place. As usual, HRPO personnel will showcase the beautiful Renaissance Sundial and the Haystack-style radio telescope. A chemistry demonstration and other surprises await you, your family and friends. Finally, we'll raffle off some incredible prizes; you don't have to be present to win. Don't miss HRPO's biggest event of the year! [HRPO is brought to the public by BREC, LSU's Department of Physics and Astronomy, and the Baton Rouge Astronomical Society.] [Moon and dome photo courtesy RodneyBell.]



SSAS Astronomy Day, Scituate Public Library, Scituate

Join the Scituate Public Library and the South Shore Astronomical Society in a celebration of Astronomy Day. 

Events will include:  Talks and Discussions, Planetarium Shows, Meteorite Collections, Children Activities and Solar Viewing plus a special "Astronomical' visitor. If you have a telescope and are not sure how to set it up; bring it with you and we will teach you the basics. We will have special activities for cub scouts working on their Astronomy Belt Loops.  These events will take place from Noon to 4:00 PM.

Join us back at the Library starting at sundown for an evening star party.

More information will be posted on our web site:



Astronomy Day 2013, 230 North Rose Street, Kalamazoo

On April 20, 2013 the Kalamazoo Astronomical Society (KAS) will hold its annual award-winning Astronomy Day, a day-long celebration featuring educational displays, hands-on activities, and special presentations to bring science alive for the entire community. This FREE event, aimed at the general public, especially families with school age children, is intended to widen knowledge and appreciation of science, particularly the field of astronomy.

This year’s theme is the Mars: Past, Present and Future. No other planet in the solar system has fired the imagination like Mars. For most of human history, the Red Planet was nothing more than a tantalizing point of light on a starry back drop. Today we have a small fleet of spacecraft surveying the Red Planet from orbit and two rovers currently exploring its surface.

Daytime activities will be held at the Kalamazoo Valley Museum starting at 9:00 am. These include safe observations of the Sun, a full-scale inflatable model of the Curiosity Mars rover, hands-on activities for children, celestial portraits with your choice of astronomical backdrops (fee requested), free shows in the planetarium, and special presentations on Mars in the museum’s Stryker Theater. Please see the Kalamazoo Astronomica Society’s special Astronomy Day website ( for a complete schedule.

Astronomy Day caps off under nature's grandest spectacle - the universe itself! Telescopes of all shapes and sizes will be available for your viewing pleasure at Owl Observatory, located on the grounds of the Kalamazoo Nature Center. The observatory, featuring the KAS 12" Schmidt-Cassegrain Telescope, will also be open to the public. Highlights of the night include the Moon and Jupiter. Gates open at 8:00 pm.


AstroNite, Murchie Science Building, Univ. of Michigan-Flint, Flint

Enjoy a family-oriented open house that's out of this world! As part of the International Day of Astronomy sponsored by the Astronomical League, UM-Flint and Longway Planetarium have joined for a night that is sure to make your imagination soar to the stars. This April, help make and dissect a comet, discover how rainbows help astronomers unravel the secrets of the universe, create and examine your own craters, catch a show in Longway's portable planetarium, and more! If the sky is clear, we will take our telescopes outside Murchie Science Building to look at amazing objects in the sky. Check out planets, the Moon, and star clusters. If you would like to bring your own telescope, you may set it up.

This free open house event takes place from 7:00pm-10:00pm on the first floor of the Murchie Science Building on the University of Michigan-Flint campus.

For more information, please visit:



National Astronomy Day activities at Paulucci Space Theater,  1515 East 25th Street, Hibbing

The Range Astronomy Club will be sponsoring events at the Paulucci Space Theater in Hibbing MN on National Astronomy Day. Events start at 4:00 PM with solar viewing. At 6:00 PM there will be two shows inside, by the acting director of the space theater. At 8:00 until 10:30 telescope viewing will resume with night sky objects. In event of cloud cover topics will be presented indoors. For more information on our club visit:

Minnesota Astronomical Society Astronomy Day, 10775 County Rd 33, Norwood Young America


The Minnesota Astronomical Society would like to invite you to attend the

Astronomical League’s Astronomy Day activities at the Onan Observatory in Baylor Regional Park. Speakers are scheduled throughout the day and will give talks on astronomy and what there is to see. Door prize drawings will be held Saturday evening and include MAS merchandise, astronomy books and telescopes.

Weather permitting, the evening will conclude with tours of the night sky and of course stargazing.


Astronomy Day Super Star Party, 28210 West Park Hwy, Ashland, April 19


Astronomy Day Super Star Party

Friday, April 19. 8:00-11:00PM. Strategic Air & Space Museum front sidewalk.

To observe Astronomy Day, the Strategic Air & Space Museum will be hosting our biggest “Star Party” of the year on Friday, April 19.  Starting a 8:00PM, our friends with the Omaha Astronomical Society will be setting up dozens of large telescopes to observe the wonders of the night sky. Here’s your chance to see the beautiful Orion Nebula before it bids adieu for the season, and even an opportunity to see up-close the largest planet in our solar system- Jupiter. Dozens of other celestial objects will also be visible throughout the evening.

This event is sponsored by the Omaha Astronomical Society, and the Strategic Air & Space Museum. Open to everyone who loves the night sky. No admission charge. Refreshments will also be served.


Astronomy Day at the Oil Region Astronomical Society, Two Mile Run County Park, Franklin

Astronomy enthusiasts across the globe will celebrate Astronomy Day Saturday, April 20th.   The Oil Region Astronomical Observatory will be open to the public starting at 7:00 PM in celebration of Astronomy Day.  If you've never seen the rings of Saturn, or the moons of Jupiter through a telescope then this is a "must see event".  The Oil Region Astronomical Society encourages interested individuals of all ages to attend the event.  There is no charge for admission, however donations are always appreciated.


NOTE: The event is weather dependent.  If it is raining or cloudy the event will not take place.

7:00 PM - Observatory Opens

7:00 PM - Sunset - Observe the solar storms on the sun through a special H-alpha Telescope

7:30 PM -  8:30 PM - Build your own Galileo Scope (

Cost is $25 for the kit.  However become an ORAS member and your cost will be $15)

8:30 PM - ?? - Observing of the night sky with the Observatory Telescopes


Astronomy Day 2013, Walmart, Galax

Everyone is invited to join the Echo Ridge Astronomical Society in celebrating Astronomy Day 2013.

We will have telescopes set up for both solar observing and lunar observing weather permitting.  There will also be free information handouts and certificates for childrens first telescopic observation.

Program will begin at 7PM until.

Come join us for fun and learning a little about our universe.