From AstronomyOutreach network
AstronomyOutreach network was created by Scott W. Roberts in 2000 as a channel for interacting with the community and to practice outreach. It is this outreach aspect that is the primary reason that Roberts got involved in the hobby of astronomy. It turns out that he was not alone, as Scott found out early on, nearly twenty years ago.
In 2004, an Awards Committee was formed that includes Dr. Mike Reynolds, Dr. Stephen J. Edberg, Tippy D'Auria, and Scott W. Roberts, to select and present the AstronomyOutreach Awards (a.k.a. the AstroOscars) to recognize those individuals and organizations who have made a major contribution towards astronomy outreach for the public. The underwriter for the "AstroOscars" is Oceanside Photo & Telescope, who for many years have given major support to astronomy clubs and astronomy outreach initiatives.
In 2010, the Awards Committee initiated the WebSpace Awards to recognize excellence on the web for educational outreach in astronomy and space science, and the organization has instituted the AstronomyOutreach Hall of Fame for individuals that have made exemplary long term contributions towards increasing awareness to the public for astronomy and space science.
In 2011, AstronomyOutreach network joined forces with the Cloudy Nights astronomy community, one of the world's largest online forums dedicated to astronomy and astronomical equipment. The new AstronomyOutreach network forum was made possible by the generous support of Astronomics.
Also in 2011, the AstronomyOutreach network website received a major makeover using the same platform that powers Wikipedia in order to allow anyone involved in outreach in astronomy and space science to make contributions and edit the site's content. The transformation of www.astronomyoutreach.net and ongoing maintenance of the site is supported by Creative Administrative Consultants (CAC).
While there are many astronomy and space exploration sites on the web, there seems to be few that spotlight the people and organizations who do outreach in this regard. There are also so many of those engaged in this endeavor who did not have a platform or a home to make themselves known to the general public. This was the primary reason to open the AstronomyOutreach network.
This organization is inclusive rather than exclusive, so we invite a wide audience that is devoted to education and public outreach (EPO), both amateur and professional, commercial and non-profit, to create and edit pages on this website.
"Your web site (AstronomyOutreach) is superb. Thank you for including us in your family of astronomy-related options."
- —Connie Walker, Ph.D.
- Senior Science Education Specialist Astronomer,
- National Optical Astronomy Observatory (NOAO),
- Tucson, Arizona
We hope that in some small way this site can help those interested to find ways to recognize, improve, create greater awareness, and increase attendance at outreach events and to learn more about EPO in astronomy and space science through resources available around the world.