Electioneering cut into my planning — didn’t get anything done for Carl Sagan Day, today, November 9. Here’s the post from last year, with a few links to sources including new sources at the bottom. “Our species needs, and deserves, a citizenry with minds wide awake and a basic understanding of how the world works,” Sagan said. Boy, howdy, now more than ever.
Have a happy Carl Sagan Day!
Press release from the Center for Inquiry:
Carl Sagan Day: November 9 — Celebrate with us!
Event Ideas & Sagan Day Commemorative Posters
Carl Sagan was a Professor of Astronomy and Space Science and Director of the Laboratory for Planetary Studies at Cornell University, but most of us know him as a Pulitzer Prize winning author and the creator of COSMOS. That Emmy and Peabody award-winning PBS television series transformed educational television and continues to affect the hearts and minds of over a billion people in over sixty countries.
No other scientist has been able to reach and engage so many nonscientists in such a meaningful way, and that is why we honor Dr. Sagan, remember his work, and revel in the cosmos he helped us understand.
Two years ago, CFI–Fort Lauderdale and other groups hostd the first Carl Sagan Day event in Florida. It was a fantastic success and now individuals and groups around the world are planning their own tributes with science fairs, planetarium shows, teacher workshops, star parties, COSMOS marathons, and more—all to say “Thanks!” to Sagan and to bring his gifts to another generation of “starstuff.”
How can you celebrate Carl Sagan Day?
Whether you’re an independent skeptics group, an astronomy club, a science department, a researcher, a teacher, a student, or just a really big Sagan fan, there are plenty of ways to celebrate Sagan Day:
- Host a COSMOS marathon—all 13 episodes are available for free at hulu.com.
- Check out Sagan’s many books at your local library or bookstore using the thorough listings from WorldCat.org.
- Enjoy the special collection of articles by or about Sagan, previously published in Skeptical Inquirer magazine.
- Listen to Sagan’s last public address for the Committee for Skeptical Inquiry (formerly CSICOP) as replayed on CFI’s podcast, Point of Inquiry: “Wonder and Skepticism.”
- Listen to Ann Druyan, writer, producer, and widow of Sagan, discuss life with Carl, his outlook on life, and his famous Gifford Lectures, “The Varieties of Scientific Experience,” also on Point of Inquiry.
- Host your own apple pie baking contest (from scratch, of course).
- Dress like Carl for a day!
- Refresh your skeptic skills with a review of Sagan’s Baloney Detection Kit.
- Invite your friends over and try to convince them you have a dragon in your garage.
- Take in a star show at your local planetarium.
- At the very least, seek out a dark sky, look UP, and reconnect with the grandeur of the cosmos.
Let us know how you’re planning to commemorate Carl Sagan Day 2011 and we’ll add your event to our Carl Sagan Day Event Calendar to help spread the word. Please email your event information to firstname.lastname@example.org.
Great collection of posters, featuring Sagan, the Very Large Array, and quotes from the good doctor, here.
November 9 is the anniversary of Sagan’s birth, of course.
More, for 2012:
- Repost: Carl Sagan Day (blogs.discovermagazine.com)
- Celebrate Carl Sagan Day in Chicago! (patheos.com)
- Remembering Carl Sagan (universetoday.com)
- #SaganGoogleDoodle Campaign (dead-logic.blogspot.com)
- “Carl Sagan,” with a meditation on the importance of accurate history (timpanogos.wordpress.com)
- Carl Sagan’s book included in Library of Congress list of “88 books that helped make America” (timpanogos.wordpress.com)