Your mission: Read one book from each of the categories of History & Astronomers, Cosmology & Astrophysics, and Sci-Fi, and complete the two “extra-vehicular activities” described below. Here are some suggested titles for the general reader:
HISTORY & ASTRONOMERS
COSMOLOGY & ASTROPHYSICS (fear not!)
SCI–FI (suggestions welcome!)
Stars and Planets: The Most Complete Guide to the Stars, Planets, Galaxies, and the Solar System
Canada StarWatch: The Essential Guide to Our Night Sky
Yearbook of Astronomy 2009
A Field Guide to Stars and Planets
Hubble: Imaging Space and Time (for supplemental indoor stargazing)
EVA 2: Visit your local planetarium or observatory and blog about it also. The International Planetarium Society has a good directory of planetaria (pdf), and the European Organisation for Astronomical Research in the Southern Hemisphere has a directory of both modern and ancient observatories with maps to help you get there. Planetaria and observatories sometimes host night-time stargazing events so you might be able to complete both EVAs in one evening. If you aren’t lucky enough to live near one of these institutions, you might be able to join a local amateur astronomical society for a “star party” and look through their telescopes. You can find clubs through Astronomy Clubs Worldwide or your national astronomical society. Newcomers are always welcome!
International Year of Astronomy: Main website.
International Astronomical Union: IYA organizers.
Portal to the Universe: One-stop-shopping for astronomy news.
Cosmic Diary: Astronomers blogging for IYA.
365 Days of Astronomy: Daily podcast of the IYA.
Starlight Initiative: International declaration on the right to dark skies.
Dark Skies Awareness: International project to reduce light pollution.
Astronomy Picture of the Day: The beauty of the universe.
The World At Night: Uniting the world with the beauty of our shared sky.
Sky This Week: Video report on sky events for the coming week.
Sky and Telescope: Magazine for amateur astronomers.
SeaSky: Comprehensive guide to astronomy.
Spaceweather: Solar activity and other near-Earth news.
Stellarium: Free, easy-to-use planetarium software.
Google Sky: Observe the universe with your computer.
Badges for your blog:
Lynda—Lynda’s Book Blog (Wales)
Paula—Paulas Bokblogg (Sweden)
Stefanie—So Many Books (USA)
Judy—Intergalactic Bookworm (a natural!) (USA)
Beata—Beata’s Blog (Slovakia)
Alice—Alice’s Astro Info (USA)
Wil—Moyen Âge (USA)
Tokemise—By Hook or by Book (USA)
Jazz—Miss Danaidae (USA)