Yuri’s Night: The World Space Party, April 12th

Exactly 50 years ago today, a Soviet Cosmonaut named Yuri Gagarin did something that even today most of us can only dream of – he traveled into outer space.  On April 12, 1961, Yuri became the first human in history to leave planet Earth.  Though his flight consisted of a single orbit around the earth and lasted only 108 minutes, it was nonetheless a huge leap forward for humankind – a truly historic event.

 

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Forty years after Yuri’s epic flight, three individuals by the name of Trish Garner, Loretta Hidalgo and George Whitesides established the first Yuri’s Night, a night dedicated to celebrating and commemorating man’s first flight into space.  They did this by setting up a website where anyone who was interested in participating in Yuri’s Night could register their celebration.

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Ten years after the first Yuri’s Night, the night has grown to include hundreds of parties around the globe.  These celebrations can range from as small as a few dozen people to as large as a few thousand.  This year, there are 494 events in 72 countries on 6 continents.  From Afghanistan to Jamaica to Peru, you can find a Yuri’s Night event.  You can even find a few in Second Life!

 

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There are a number of ways that you can participate:

  • Attend a celebration.  There are almost 500 events this year, so chances are you should be able to find one nearby.  The official Yuri’s Night  website includes a list of events.
  • Launch your own celebration.  You can easily register your event on the Yuri’s Night site.  The site also provides resources for event organizers, including a global webcast, postcards, flyers and even music.
  • Help get the word out. You can follow Yuri’s Night on Facebook and Twitter.

So what are you waiting for?  Get out there and join the worldwide celebration!