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In Florence, the special event “Astronomia in piazza” (“Astronomy in the public squares”) keeps on going on; we are talking about a project started on May 3rd 2009, which will end only on December 31st.
Such an idea was created by the astronomer Emiliano Ricci, in cooperation with the department of culture of the City of Florence and the Unesco Office, on the occasion of the 400th anniversary of the first sky observations thanks to Galileo Galilei‘s telescope.
The event’s aim, based on the activity of the American “sidewalk astronomers”, is to observe stars, planets and the galaxy from the largest and most striking Florentine historical squares, such as Piazza della Signoria, Piazza Santa Croce, Piazza del Duomo, Piazza della Repubblica and much more: and everything is possible with the help of a simple telescope!
In this way, the project wants to spread astronomy among common people, through public observations which take place in public squares with a simple amateur telescope. The “sidewalk astronomers” are those amateur astronomers who offer their equipment and bring it on the sidewalks, inviting people to observe the wonders of the universe.
In fact, the astronomer Emiliano Ricci gives hundreds people the chance to observe such wonderful celestial bodies like the Moon, planets, stars and open clusters from his telescope.
Every evening with calm weather will be suitable for the observation. After the appointment in Santa Croce in May and the one which took place in July in the striking terrace of Piazzale Michelangelo, now we are waiting for the next date for closely watching the celestial bodies. The astronomer hasn’t decided yet on which days he will come back in the squares with his telescope, but he “alerts” us that it will happen soon.
It will be a real satisfaction for everyone to have the chance to watch with a telescope Mars, Saturn or the Moon!
So, the astronomical autumn in Florence is not finished yet thanks to “Astronomia in piazza”. Don’t miss this exciting stellar experience!