GLAS Helps Children Reach for the Stars

By Baye Johnson, At The Lake editorial intern

This summer Geneva Lake Astrophysics and STEAM, also known as GLAS, will be hosting Star Parties at the Riviera Ballroom in downtown Lake Geneva. Star Parties are a fun and interactive way for people to learn more about the universe and space.

GLAS Education, a non-profit organization based in Williams Bay, was formed by the professionals who once were at the helm of the Yerkes Observatory Education Outreach Programs. GLAS Education has taken the lead in carrying on the noteworthy programs established by Yerkes, continuing to educate the youngest generation.

Each of the Star Parties will include a portable planetarium, telescopes, a black hole simulator and other hands on activities that are carefully designed for each of the different parties’ themes. Children and families will be given the opportunity to gaze through telescopes, go into a planetarium and participate in interactive activities to learn about astrophysics topics. With each Star Party centered around a different subject, every family or child can find something new to enjoy. The events are inclusive and accessible for all age groups and open to the public. The parties scheduled for Thursdays this summer will run for about 3 hours, from 7-10 p.m.

The first in the series of Star Parties will be held June 27 and will focus on black holes. As technology has improved, scientists have been able to capture the first photos of a black holes, and GLAS will give attendees the opportunity to learn more about these sources of wonder. The second Star Party on July 25 will highlight the 50th anniversary of the Apollo moon landing. On Aug. 29, the Star Party will focus on space travel, including the multiple manned and unmanned missions to the moon and other planets.

Star Party tickets can be purchased online at glaseducation.org/star-parties.html or at the door on the day of the event for a slightly higher fee. The proceeds from Star Parties are donated by GLAS to other enrichment programs such as: Girls Who Code, Planetarium Camp, the Lakeshore Environmental and Night Sky Sensor (LENSS) Project and future Star Parties.