Free kits with activities and games will be available to celebrate the Maunakea Observatories’ annual science event AstroDay (traditionally a hands-on celebration). Due to the COVID-19 pandemic, this year’s celebration is going hybrid and AstroDay kits will be available from Friday, April 30 through Sunday, May 2 at Prince Kūhiō Plaza in Hilo.

“We’re thrilled to bring back AstroDay in person in some way, and believe the hybrid nature of this year’s event keeps the spirit of astronomy alive in a way that is safe and fun for everyone,” said Carolyn Kaichi, event coordinator, University of Hawaiʻi at Mānoa Institute for Astronomy (IfA).

boy looking at astronomy display

Families can visit stores with AstroDay posters to receive the kits. No purchase is required.

On April 30, winners from the AstroDay Coin Contest, a student design competition launched earlier in the year, will be announced online. Two special drawings will also be held during the “Ask an Astronomer” segment on the KWXX morning show on April 30 and May 2. Jennifer van Saders, an assistant astronomy professor at IfA, will answer questions from the public that can be texted to KWXX during the last week in April.

In March 2021, IfA and the ʻImiloa Astronomy Center helped launch a socially-distanced version of the annual Waimea Solar System Walk, where keiki learned about the universe in ʻōlelo Hawaiʻi (Hawaiian language) and English.

For more information on AstroDay go to the Institute for Astronomy website.