Night Sky Network Astronomy Clubs
and Solar System Ambassadors

How to Partner with Your Local NASA Volunteers

Night Sky Network Astronomy Clubs
To find nearby NSN astronomy clubs:

  1. Visit Clubs & Events page:
  2. Type in your zip code and submit
  3. Many clubs accept event requests directly from their page or send them an email.

Download NSN Flyer

Solar System Ambassadors
To find a nearby SSA:

  1. Visit website:
  2. Click on the “Directory” menu link
  3. Zoom in on the map and click on a pin in your area for bio and contact information. Or search by name, state and/or country

Download SSA Flyer

What to Have Prepared When Contacting Them:

  • Schedule well in advance. Try to give them at least a month to make sure they are available and have enough time to ensure a quality event.
  • What is the exact time, date and location? Is there a backup date in case of poor weather?
  • Is there a theme for your event or do you want them to provide any type of activity or presentation that they’d like?
  • What type of event is it? Is it a science fair, scout campout, community event?
  • Who is this event for, and how many will be there? Will it be children? Young adults? Senior citizens? An all-ages event? Dozens of people or hundreds? Notify the volunteer of any audience special needs or considerations.
  • Who should they contact, and what is their preferred contact information? In addition to your own info, is there a backup person? Is there a person in charge of the event facility itself or a custodian that can help with basic issues with the event space?
  • Ask them what presentation tools they may need – projector, chairs, tables, outside space etc.
  • Share what you are doing to advertise the event and your volunteer can probably help spread the word through their channels, including the SSA and NSN websites.

At the Event:

Please help your volunteer out by ensuring they have easy access to your event space (including parking), and they have all of the supplies and tools they need available well before the event is scheduled to start so there’s plenty of set up time.

Crowd control and clear safety guidelines for your volunteers and visitors are essential for a smooth event. Be sure to communicate what your standard emergency procedures are and where all the restrooms or breakrooms are for the volunteer to use.

At the end of the event, if you want to provide the volunteer with any feedback, photos or schedule another event, it’s a good time to discuss that before they leave. Remember, these are volunteers – they are sharing their time simply for the joy it brings. Be sure to pass on thanks and comments from your community!

Watch Video Clip from Webinar:

During a recent STAR Net webinar, representatives from both Night Sky Network and Solar System Ambassadors talked about how libraries can utilize their resources for future programming.

Click the video on the left to view it on this page or you can watch the video directly on YouTube.

NCIL, in partnership with the Lunar and Planetary Institute, received funding from the National Science Foundation for the first-ever Public Libraries & STEM conference that took place at the Sheraton Denver Downtown Hotel in Colorado, August 20-22, 2015. This invitation-only conference brought 150+ library and STEM professionals and funders together to build productive relationships; explore promising practices in designing effective programs; help define a 21st century vision of STEM learning in public libraries; and develop the foundation for a future evaluation and research agenda for libraries and their partners engaged in STEM education efforts. The conference background reports, presentation files, and results were used as the foundation of the resources compiled For more information, download the following documents.

Conference Summary | Conference Evaluation Report | Public Libraries and STEM

This material is based upon work supported by the National Science Foundation under Grant Numbers DRL-1413783 and DRL-1421427. Any opinions, findings, and conclusions or recommendations expressed in this material are those of the authors and do not necessarily reflect the views of the National Science Foundation.