Big Sisters Luminary Soiree

Yuri’s Night at the Space Centre

Wednesday, March 30th, 2011 — 11:58am PDT
Comments 80

Yuri’s Night is an annual international celebration of Russia’s Yuri Gagarin being the first man to see the Earth from space and this year marks the expedition’s 50th anniversary. Vancouver is one of the 280 cities around the world who have signed up to host special events Saturday April 9th or Tuesday April 12th (the actual anniversary day) in honour of this occasion.

I caught up with Cameron Cronin, who is in charge of Public Programs at the H.R. MacMillan Space Centre. He said they’ve been wanting to host a Yuri’s Night for a long time and this year, they’re finally doing it for two reasons. The first being that it’s the 50th anniversary, and the second is that it’s a party just for the big kids.

“We’re known for our school programming but we thought it would be fun to open [the Space Centre] up for adults for one night.” Cam added that they will have vodka tastings, borscht, and involvement from the Russian community in Vancouver. “It will be a neat time to look at the whole history of space exploration and reflect on where we’ve been, and where the next generation is going.”

This may be the first of many grown-up themed events at the Space Centre as they hope to expand programming for wider age groups. “Being a non-profit it’s a big risk, but we’re willing to take it,” said Cam who added that all proceeds from the evening events with adults will go directly back into the school programs.

Yuri’s Night will be celebrated Saturday April 9th at the Space Centre from 8:00pm until midnight. Activities will include launching glow in the dark rockets, a human gyroscope (preferably before partaking in the vodka samples), planetarium shows, a courtyard cosmic disco and more. Tickets are $30 per person (must be 19 years of age or older) and are only available in advance.

If you would like to attend this world space party in Vancouver, the Space Centre has offered up a pair of tickets to one of my readers. Here’s how you can enter to win:

  • Leave a comment listing what you like about space (1 entry)
  • Post the following on Twitter (1 entry)
  • I entered to win tickets to @YurisNight in #Vancouver from @AskAnAstronomer & @Miss604

    Follow @YurisNight on Twitter for information about the global events and connect with the Space Centre in Vancouver @AskAnAstronomer.

    I will draw one winner at 12:00pm on Wednesday April 6, 2011. Must be 19+ to enter and attend. Please enjoy responsibly and plan a safe ride home.

    Update The winner is Arne Salvesen – congratulations!

    Current contests on


    1. Mae says:

      It’s both humbling and awe-inspiring to think how vast space is, how insignificant mankind is, and how fantastical the things we find in space, things beyond imagination.

    2. Hayley says:

      how big it is!!

    3. Lois Patterson says:

      The immensity, the beauty, the emptiness, the scariness — all reasons I like space.

    4. Costas says:

      Space is mans true playground where imagination can never stop and plus holds the mysteries of life!

    5. Tim C says:

      It was my childhood dream to be an astronaut, so I studied Engineering. It’s amazing the things we can still learn in space, and the technology created to get there.

    6. Vanessa says:

      The silence, you can’t hear anything.

    7. shah says:

      the moon and stars

    8. Veronica says:

      It is so big – the unknown factor of space is kinda scary!

    9. Jerry L says:

      The thought of an infinite universe filled with un tapped wonders

    10. Melissa says:

      I love looking up at the stars with my four year old and seeing them through her eyes – which is more magical and vast than my grown up mind does.

    11. Laura says:

      Space, the final frontier. Honestly I’ve been enamored since childhood, when I’d spend evening walks with my dad looking at the constellations!

    12. Alakitten says:

      I like the Unknown aspect of it…. interesting and scary!

    13. Phy says:

      Love how space is so big that anything else you can think of is so trivial and small.

    14. Erin says:

      I love the tv shows it inspires!! Red Dwarf is my fav!

    15. Kai says:

      the infinite space and undiscovered wonders. seeing images and just staring up at it at night makes me feel humbled and in awe, esp. how I’m a speck on a planet and gravity is holding me down to the planet that is amidst the infinite space ๐Ÿ˜‰

    16. Erin says:

      It’s next

    17. John says:

      definitely the stars

    18. Robyn H says:

      It’s the ultimate unknown…

    19. Savanna says:

      How small it makes us.

    20. Danielle Scott says:

      The stars!

    21. Christopher Gallagher says:

      Its sense of wonder!

    22. Teresa says:

      I like planets

    23. capistrano says:

      what i like about space. . .for me, it seem like it’s MAGIC!!. . .gravity do the work or u just float around the space. .that’s it, it’s really MAGIC!:)

    24. Sonia says:

      so much is unknown

    25. Tams says:

      I like that it smells like burnt toast, and that it has many awesome, beautiful, awe-inspiring things in it.

    26. Justin says:

      Space is filled with potential and imagination!

    27. Space … the final frontier.

      My God … it’s full of stars

      Space is big. You just won’t believe how vastly, hugely, mind- bogglingly big it is. I mean, you may think it’s a long way down the road to the chemist’s, but that’s just peanuts to space

    28. Linda says:

      i’m so amazed by all the beautiful stars! ๐Ÿ™‚

    29. Aileen R says:

      That when life seems like it’s so big and full of to much stuff going on. I can look up into the sky and it reminds me that those problems are small by comparison.

    30. Lauren says:

      I love the fact that space is always expanding.

    31. Alison says:

      The countless stars!

    32. Icitea says:

      I love nebulas! Love love them~ those gaseous masses are so beautiful!

    33. Lyndsey says:

      It’s elusive and infinite possibilities, both in beauty and exploration. It’s because it’s so unknown, that I’m so drawn to it.
      (I used to want to be an astronaut and have personally met Canada’s first and second female astronauts into space: Roberta Bondar and Julie Payette!!) Awesome experience;P

    34. Robin says:

      It’s so beautiful. I love the photos of Earth and of other places I would never get to see otherwise.

    35. Amy W. says:


    36. David D. says:

      Love star gazing.

    37. Anne says:

      I like the Galilean moons of Jupiter. Calista, Io, Ganymede, and Europa

    38. Josh says:

      I love that Pluto can’t cut it as planet! Space is cold!

    39. Mat says:

      8 minutes for light to get from the sun to earth??? Say whaaaaaaaaaat???

    40. Kenneth says:

      Space is where we can look back at the planet Earth and see how insignificant we are.

    41. Nick says:

      I like 2001: a space odyssey… good movie

    42. Linda says:

      the stars!

    43. Bonnie says:

      Great history of man’s efforts to explore space

    44. Emily H says:

      I just love all of the unknowns…

    45. Murilo says:

      The vastness, the beauty and the unending mystery that surprises us beyond our wildest imagination and all the unending possibilities that fill us with imagination, doubts, hopes and dreams, and also the humbleness that it inspires in us.

    46. nocal says:

      Love it!!

    47. Lawrence says:

      Space is empty yet full. It’s neverending.

    48. Erica says:

      That’s it vast, beautiful and mysterious.

    49. Lachlan says:

      Eternal darkness, always expanding and life on other planets: what’s not to like?

    50. Emily says:

      space has endless possibilities

    51. Kerry says:

      So excited to see Yuri’s night happening in Vancouver!

      My friends in California think it’s awesome and love to go!!

    52. Agasel says:

      I like having space because then I can get a good night’s sleep without having to listen to loud snoring — oh wait, I thought you meant “space” in a relationship.

    53. Harjit says:

      Sounds planetacular! ๐Ÿ™‚

    54. Garrett says:

      The unknown and all of the things left to be discovered.

    55. Chloe says:

      I love how insignificant we are in the grand scheme of things.

    56. Samira says:

      I love how there’s no gravity in space!

    57. Geoff says:

      It’s big and awesome and always give you something to shoot for and wonder about

    58. Elliot says:

      Space is big. You just won’t believe how vastly, hugely, mind- bogglingly big it is. I mean, you may think it’s a long way down the road to the chemist’s, but that’s just peanuts to space.

      Douglas Adams, The Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy

    59. Emma says:

      The stars! The size!

    60. Lynda Jao says:

      Space is my very first love. I fell in love when I was six, gazing at astronomy books above me. And I’ve been in love ever since – knowing how small we are in respect to the universe makes the life we live that much more amazing.

    61. Larry says:

      When I was a kid, we were sleeping outside one night in our sleeping bags. We saw a Russian and an American spaceship link up, can’t remember the year. They looked like little stars slowly moving through space and very 3D. Laying there on the grass, on a warm summer’s night, it seemed like I could almost imagine what it was like to be in space, myself. I always thought it would be cool to go into space since that night and thought that maybe everyone would be flying into space by now. Oh well a childhood fantasy, but space is both fascinating and inviting and its where every atom in your body came from.

    62. Ying says:

      Space is intriguing. I’d like to think there’s got to be life somewhere out there…….

    63. aria says:

      Spase alwasy brings back sweet memories of my dad showing my brother and I the various constallations when we were little.

    64. rose says:

      Space is fasinating, endless, and it keeps us imagine.

    65. Mandi Bryan says:

      The vast and unknown is the most the exciting part.

    66. alo says:

      My daughter was 2 and started to wonder why the moon followed us everywhere we went. She is five and fasinated with everything about space. I’m too.

    67. alo says:

      Space holds the mysteries of life. Let’s explore…

    68. P L says:

      Space holds answer to science and religion.

    69. aylo says:

      There is (was) got to be intellegence out there! Keeps us wondering.

    70. pete says:

      Beam me up, Scotty.

    71. Bonnie H says:

      The stars!

    72. Christine says:

      It’s infinite and beautiful.

    73. Michelle Williamson says:

      Star gazing!

    74. vincent says:

      it’s many mysteries. so much we still dont know.

    75. Chris Poskitt says:

      It gives you something to look at when you’re considering kissing a pretty girl.

    76. Karen says:

      i love looking up at the sky and seeing those stars far away

    77. Sean Turvey says:

      I like the thought that somewhere in the billions upon billions of stars out there, someone in some other galaxy is wondering if there is life on other planets.

    78. SoniaD says:

      I attended a space shuttle launch at Cape Canaveral a few years ago. When the shuttle went up, I was-unexpectedly-filled with emotions. Pride, joy, awe, humbleness, amazement. Yuri’s Night will be a great place to celebrate the beauty and mystery of space, and the incredible accomplishments of humankind.

    79. Alice says:

      Space reminds me of when I was a kid and enjoyed learning about the planets and what’s beyond. So much has changed since then as new discoveries are made. Amazing!

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