StarPeople's astronomy outreach at the Bonnievale Bonanza 2013

posted: 1496 days ago, on Friday, 2013 Nov 08 at 06:49
tags: astronomy, outreach, Ed Foster, Bonnievale.

The Bonnievale Bonanza (find them at or on FaceBook) is a lekker fees in aid of the local high school. We hope to visit them in 2014 for an outreach event, but decided to scope them out this year as a test-run. What a delightful event it was, and we look forward to returning next year. Kudos to the organizers.


The weather did not always play along. En route partial cloud, and on Thursday afternoon, total cloud and rain.

Making the "Throw Rings Around Saturn and Win a Telescope" festival game. The idea is to, well, throw rings around a yellow circle (representing Saturn's disc) and if you get three in a row, you win a 6-inch equatorial telescope. Two rings gets you a Galileoscope, and one ring gets you a MoonScope. Super fun, and something to expand on at other outreach events.

(left) Div, the super-friendly owner of Bonnies Bed and Breakfast, let us use his garage as a prep room. (right) Lynnette cutting out Saturnian rings.

All the ducks in a row, ready for the show.

Friday, November 01

(left) Usually the gazebo keeps the hot Sun at bay. Today, it attempted to keep us dry. (right) Ed setting up Neville's excellent StarWaders solar system model.

Rain, rain and rain.

(left) Unfortunately my magic isn't good enough to conjure away the rain. (right) The Saturn V rocket model, and the lunar return module, and both waterproof and can float.

A "Freefall" device was set up a few metres from our stand. The faces are priceless.

Friday evening. (left) Our neighbours across the road. (right) Their view of our stall.

Saturday, November 02

Much better weather, with blue skies early morning.

Our stall, right at the entrance to the festival grounds.

Saturn, space science and curious kids.

Our neighbours, Paralace and Kenny, two friendly dudes selling some pretty hand-made wares.

Sun-viewing, with telescope operators Ed Foster (top) and Lynnette Foster (below).

The Sun viewing was in a cordoned-off area next to the gazebo, making crowd control easy.

The Saturn Ring Game. Super, super fun. The idea is to throw one or more rings around the Saturn-discs, which have a cup-hook in the centre.

Much fun!

Late afternoon, time to take down the stall and bring out the telescopes for star gazing.

"Come And See The Stars" setup.

(top, left) Venus manages to hold its own amidst the fare glare. (top, right) Unlike Noah's mythical ark, they didn't come two-by-two but in droves.

Bonnievale's newest magician. Robin (in the peach shirt) figured out the One-Way Deck and shows off his newly-acquired skill to Shaun.

Sunday, November 03

Sunday afternoon and the road home.

Team StarPeople

nothing more to see. please move along.