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Forum:Space Events & Happenings
Topic:4/12: Yuri's Night 2008
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collectSPACE is a proud sponsor of the 2008 Yuri's Night international celebration.

In addition, we will be staffing a booth at the Yuri's Night Houston at Space Center Houston, so if you are in the area, drop by and say hello!


Yuri's Night Houston: Celebrate 50 Years of Space Exploration Weekend

Only a few days remain before the largest space celebration in the world! Join us this Saturday, April 12th, at Space Center Houston to celebrate Yuri's Night! We will join in with over 160 celebrations in 35 countries to recognize Yuri Gagarin flight into space in 1961. We will also celebrate the achievement by the United States in 1981 when they launched the first space shuttle into space. Most importantly, this year marks the 50th anniversary of NASA and space exploration. To honor the past and look forward to the future, Yuri's Night Houston, hosted by the American Astronautical Society, has teamed up with the Bay Area Rally, the American Institute of Aeronautics and Astronautics, Boeing, Jacobs Engineereing, USA, ERC, and to bring a wide-ranging experience to the public. From motorcycles and rockets to an all day Outlaw Music Festival and a Zero G flight, there's something for everyone.

Three main events make up Yuri's Night Houston: a 5K Fun Run, a space day, and a celebration! Starting bright and early, join fellow runners at a fun run at Challenger Park to raise money for the Challenger Center and Permission to Dream. After you take a jog and help those in need, make your way to Space Center Houston for a full day of activities including a welcome from Johnson Space Center Director Mike Coats, presentations by astronauts and space industry guests, a host of educational activities, a rocket launch, and huge X-Prize space experience banners. After a day of music, education, and food, relax at Space Center Houston with the music of Texas legend Billy Joe Shaver thanks to the Yuri's night presenting sponsor, Boeing.

There's one more important part of this event that you don't want to overlook. One lucky person will win a trip to experience parabolic flight! Jacobs Engineering has sponsored one person, to be chosen by raffle, to ride Zero-G's G-Force One, a plane that performs flight maneuvers to produce the feeling of weightlessness experienced in space. Tickets are only $5 and the winner will receive airfare, hotel and a flight on G Force One.

  • Tickets for the Zero G Raffle can be purchased here.
  • For more information about Yuri's Night Houston and for tickets for the fun run, Yuri's Night and the Bay Area Rally, see this website.
  • 50th Anniversary Memorabilia will be sold by starport at the event; official t-shirts and Yuri's Night's pins will be sold at the Yuri's Night booth.
  • If you are interested in volunteering at the event (you get a really great t-shirt), please contact Christi Vigneri (
Keep exploring!

Schedule of Events

  • 7:45 am: 1K Kid's Run (Challenger Park)
  • 8:00 am: 5k Fun Run (Challenger Park); All proceeds to go charity: Permission to Dream and The Challenger Center
  • 10:00 am: Education Day (SCH) (educational exhibits, classroom lectures, guest speakers, Texas Outlaw Music Festival)
  • 10:00 am: David Beverly Memorial Ride
  • 11:00 am: Aerospace Speaker (Blastoff Theatre)
  • 12:00 pm: Official Greeting from JSC Center Director, Mike Coats and reading of proclamation by the office of Congressman Nick Lampson (Main Stage)
  • 1:00 pm: Aerospace Speaker (Blastoff Theatre)
  • 2:00 pm: Speaker on the Constellation Program (Blastoff Theatre)
  • 3:00 pm: Astronaut Speaker (Blastoff Theatre)
  • 4:00 pm: Bebe Kelly-Serrato on the history of Yuri Gagarin (Blastoff Theatre)
  • 4:30 pm: Trams load for Rocket Demonstration (SCH) - limited to first 100 people.
  • 5:00 pm: Rocket Demonstration (via Tram at RocketPark)
  • 8:00 pm: Texas Legend Billy Joe Shaver takes stage (exact time still tbd)
  • 9:30 pm: Zero G Raffle Drawing
  • 10:00 pm: Yuri's Night Houston officially ends
Robert PearlmanNote collectSPACE contributing writer Francis French in the following Yuri's Night San Diego release
Yuri's Night - San Diego World Space Party

Several San Diego spaceflight advocacy groups are collaborating to celebrate cosmonaut Yuri Gagarin at the YURI'S NIGHT WORLD SPACE PARTY, an international celebration held on April 12 every year to commemorate the first human spaceflight. The event, which is open to the public, will take place on Saturday, April 12, 2008 from 6:00pm to 9:00pm at "Killer Pizza from Mars" restaurant, 3772 Mission Ave. at El Camino Real in Oceanside. Cost is $10.00 per person (plus drinks and side dishes other than pizza). Additional information is available at, and RSVPs can be sent to

Special guest speakers at the San Diego YURI'S NIGHT WORLD SPACE PARTY include:

Francis French: a San Diego-based book and magazine author specializing in space flight history. He is currently the Director of Education at the San Diego Air & Space Museum and was a former Educations Program Coordinator at the Reuben H. Fleet Science Center and Director of Events for Sally Ride Science. He is also coauthor of two award-winning books on astronauts and space exploration: "In The Shadow of the Moon" and "Into That Silent Sea". French will give a multimedia presentation about cosmonaut Yuri Gagarin.

Scott Borden: an Accredited Space Agent for Virgin Galactic, is the source in San Diego for information and reservations on Sir Richard Branson's private space venture. The first vehicle rollout is just months away, with commercial operations on target to begin in late 2009/early 2010. Borden, who holds reservation #552 aboard VSS Enterprise, will host a multimedia presentation about Virgin Galactic, the world's first private spaceline.

The goals of YURI'S NIGHT WORLD SPACE PARTY are to increase public interest in space exploration and to inspire a new generation of explorers. Driven by space-inspired artistic expression and culminating in a worldwide network of annual celebrations and educational events, Yuri's Night creates a community of people committed to shaping the future of space exploration while developing responsible leaders and innovators with a global perspective. These events are a showcase for elements of culture that embrace space including music, dance, fashion, and art.

The organizations coordinating the San Diego YURI'S NIGHT WORLD SPACE PARTY include:

The San Diego YURI'S NIGHT WORLD SPACE PARTY will take place on Saturday, April 12, 2008 from 6:00pm to 9:00pm at:

Killer Pizza From Mars
3772 Mission Ave. at El Camino Real
Oceanside, CA 92054
Phone: 760-722-6060

This event is open to the public. Cost is $10.00 per person (plus drinks and side dishes other than pizza). Please RSVP to:

garymilgromWe're a little slower in Atlanta so we'll be celebrating the following day. If you're in the area please see separate thread here.
tegwilymCharles Simonyi will be at Yuri's Night in Seattle.
chappyIt's 27 years ago, when the shuttle 'Columbia' launched with John Young and Robert Crippen aboard... I still remember watching them on the TV and was in awe of two heroes, which still up to now are my heroes.

On behalf of all the Welsh space buffs that we wish them both an 'happy anniversary'...

Robert PearlmanFirst photos from Yuri's Night Houston!
Ares I greets visitors outside Space Center Houston...

YN Houston is held in conjunction with the Bay Area Rally...

The Yuri's Night Houston booth!

Johnson Space Center director Mike Coats chats with YN staff...

Got pics from your party? Send 'em to and we'll post 'em!
issman1Has Soyeon Yi sung to her ISS crewmates, as press reports said she would on Cosmonauts Day?
Robert PearlmanITAR-TASS: Cosmonautics Day to be marked in orbit with Korean song and meals
Korean culture party will be held in the orbit on Russian Cosmonautics Day. After the busy working day, first Korean female cosmonaut Yi So-yeon will sing a Korean-language song for her Russian and American colleagues and offer them national cuisine meals for the festive dinner.

The girl told reporters before the liftoff from the Baikonur cosmodrome that she would sing a song on April 12 in honour of space pioneer Yuri Gagarin.

On the dinner menu are ten Korean national meals.

Before enjoying the Oriental meals and Korean musical culture, the Russian-American-Korean crew will have a busy working day, as the crew replacement period is the busiest, and no days off are planned.

Robert PearlmanMore photos from Yuri's Night Houston!
Cosmos comes to say hi!

Education area inside Space Center Houston...

JSC's Heather Paul gave a demonstration about spacesuits...

...and astronaut David Leestma spoke about walking in space!

Got pics from your party? Send 'em to and we'll post 'em!
Robert PearlmanWould you believe, even more photos from Yuri's Night Houston!
The Yuri's Night Houston team!

Jones bottled Yuri's Night Houston soda!

Chatting and posing with Miss Texas Teen USA and Miss Texas United Nation...

Got pics from your party? Send 'em to and we'll post 'em!
Robert PearlmanEntering the home stretch for Yuri's Night Houston!
Raffle anyone? Drawing for a free zero-g ride coming up at 9:30 p.m.

Texas legend Billy Joe Shaver on the stage!

Hanging in the VIP room...

Got pics from your party? Send 'em to and we'll post 'em!
Robert PearlmanThe last picture show from Yuri's Night Houston!
Cosmos gets down and boogies!

Billy Joe Shaver wraps his great performance...

And the winner of the zero-g raffle is...

...Robert Pearlman Frank Trice!

And that brings Yuri's Night Houston 2008 to a close. Good night everyone... see you for YN 2009!
Robert PearlmanOne more bonus: during the party, the entire crew of the International Space Station called Yuri's Night Houston organizer Nick Skytland's cell phone to wish everyone a very happy Cosmonautics Day. Nick had them call back and leave a message on his voice mail, which you can listen to here (mp3, 1.7mb).

It is a bit hard to hear, but Expedition 16 flight engineer Yuri Malenchenko speaks first, then Expedition 16/17 flight engineer Garrett Reisman, followed by Expedition 16 commander Peggy Whitson ("from the International Space Station"), Expedition 17 commander Sergei Volkov, Expedition 17 flight engineer Oleg Kononenko and finally, spaceflight participant (and the first Korean citizen in space) Soyeon Yi.

ASCAN1984I am so jealous right now. Forget orbiting the earth in the ISS, this is so cool. Good music, surrounded by spaceflight, astronauts, great company, great stuff to buy. Good looking women. Like I said. So jealous.
WehaveliftoffAnyone spend Yuri's night in New York? How were the shot glasses at 9:30 pm? Any astronauts show up?
Robert PearlmanFrom the San Diego Yuri's Night, starring our own Francis French:

FFrenchHere is the San Diego NSS chapter's page with more photos and coverage of the event.

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