Gazing at the Starry Sky in Crete

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Gazing at the Night Sky and the Fool Moon in Kolymbari

On the occasion of the full moon on August 6th, was organized an event for the observation of the night sky in Kolymbari, west from Chania. The event was organized by the Association of Friends of Astronomy, and everyone interested in the learning more about the stars and constellations in the sky of Crete was invited.

The attendants were more than 300, a fact that pleased but also surprised the Association. The presence of so many children interested in observing the night sky was also impressive, considering that never before had so many Lilliputian astronomers gathered in an open event.

The crowd gathered early, around the telescopes available for the observation of heavenly bodies.

full moon at night sky in crete

After a short tour to the night sky, and after discussing about planets, solar systems and asterisms, distances in the Universe, black holes and space travels, they embarked to a distant trip to Planet Zeus (Jupiter), Andromeda Galaxy and the gorgeous double star Albireo.

Passing satellites were also spotted, although the thrill of the night was the falling stars, the so called Perseids – a celestial rain of shootings stars that make the night sky sparkle.

The moon was holding in store a very impressive entrance to the scene and the telescopes turned right away towards its direction. The crater, the lunar mountains and the distinctive line between the visible and the dark side of the moon, offered a spectacular experience to those who never had had the chance before to observe the Moon through a telescope.

The attendants of the event stayed until past midnight, and the intrigue and charm of the moon kept some people on spot until 2.30am; the lucky amateur astronomers had the chance to see less popular and uncommon planetary nebula and clusters of stars. The attendants left fully satisfied and impressed and certainly much more informed and “Universally” conscious!

The organizers were so pleased with the result that they decided to organize a similar event the following year, in August 2010, honouring the largest and most beautiful full moon of the year.

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