DFW Planetary Society Book Club discussion


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message 1: by Jessica (new)

Jessica | 82 comments Mod
Hey everyone! I know this is primarily a place for us to discuss our book club picks, but I know some of you are interested in The Planetary Society in general. Because of this, we wanted to reach out to you guys and see if there were any ideas for outreach opportunities.

Due to our low numbers of local volunteers (primarily just Markie and myself at the moment) we are a touch limited. We are mostly looking for existing events that will allow us to set up a table so we can hand out goodies and talk to people about what The Planetary Society does.

We have also had success with small events at local businesses such as Yuri's Night at Caves in Arlington and Asteroid Day at Good Records in Dallas. We even spent a day talking to several hundred students about STEM careers at a local middle school in Mansfield.

We are generally looking for more things like these. If you guys know of any existing events that might allow us to set up a table, businesses that would let us host events, or any other ideas that would provide us with outreach opportunities in the DFW area, we would be incredibly appreciative.

We are hoping to have a much more active 2017 and are open to any ideas. This will stay as an open thread, so even if there is nothing at the moment, keep us in mind!


message 2: by [deleted user] (new)

Would you both be comfortable having a table at DFW NORML meetings? The meetings are always free and open to the public; they take place on the last Saturday of the month at about 4pm.

message 3: by Tim (new)

Tim | 33 comments Some Suggestions:

Planetary Society Email List
• There are probably a lot of Planetary Society Members who don’t know that there is a DFW Chapter. We could probably draft an email and have the Planetary Society send it out to members in the DFW area. We may want to have an event already planned so that we could promote it in the email.

Fellowship of Freethought – I have lots of connections in this group and in general these are science loving people
• FoF Gathering Talk – FoF has a monthly gathering and is often looking for speakers. If we had someone who could talk about something like space advocacy, current Planetary Society projects (maybe the Planetary Society already has a PowerPoint we could use), etc. then I’m sure they’d let us plug the group and do some tabling. The gatherings usually have about 30 to 50 people, typically older adults and families which would probably support the group more financially than socially. They also have kid classes while the adults listen to the talks. They’d also love it if we did activities with the kids (maybe learn about and build tinfoil light sails, learn about dinosaurs, etc.).

• FoF Pub Night – This is where the social people hang out and a mostly a different crowd than the Gatherings. Probably about 30 people on a given night. I’m sure they’d let us hand stuff out there.

• FoF Cross-listed or joint event – If we set up some sort of DFW Planetary Society social event, we could probably get it cross-listed with FoF on their Meetup page as long as it doesn’t conflict with one of their other events.

Drinking with Telescopes
• Do drinking and telescopes go together? Jessica do you have a telescope? I know a couple FoF guys who are amateur astronomers with some pretty big telescopes and I’m pretty sure they are with the Texas Astronomical Society and at least one is a Planetary Society member. One of them is always at the Frisco Star Party.

Table at the Texas Astronomical Society Star Parties
• Maybe the Texas Astronomical Society would let us table at one/some of their Star Parties. I’m pretty sure they’re open to the general public so it wouldn’t just be astronomers that we’d be reaching out to.

• It might be worth it to set up a Meetup.com site even if we just have the recurring book club meeting for now. A lot of people find groups that way.

Neil deGrasse Tyson
• Neil is speaking in Dallas next month. I wonder if we could have the Planetary Society ask him to plug the local DFW chapter.

Board Member
• Wally Hooser, a Planetary Society board member is a Dallas resident and Associate Professor of Radiology at the University of Texas Southwestern Medical School. Maybe we could get him to give a talk about philanthropy in science or something. Could be a real good event to promote.

Social Science
• I think we’ve tried to contact the Perot Museum before to table, but maybe should keep at them. The theme for October is “cosmic” so maybe that would be a good one.

message 4: by Jessica (new)

Jessica | 82 comments Mod
Wow that is a lot of stuff!

Josh, I'll have to check with the global outreach supervisor on NORML. Thanks for the suggestion!

Tim. Holy crap. That's a lot.

As far as emailing, we actually did that already. We had an email letting everyone that was a member in north Texas know that we had a volunteer chapter. We don't have access to the email addresses for privacy reasons, but the global coordinator sent it out for us with my email as the return. If they were interested in more local stuff, they were asked to reply so I could add them to the local list. I'm assuming you never saw this, so I may ask her to let me do another.

I do have a telescope. I'm not sure how well drinking and telescopes go together. I've been hesitant to combine them, but am open to the possibility.

I don't know how I missed that we had a local board member. That is definitely an opportunity there.

As far as all the other things, well the goodreads app is awful and I can't see the other things to reference. But generally if I recall they were partnering with FoF and Texas Astronomical Society for various things. And we're totally down for that. We've been meaning to try to do that anyway, but scheduling is occasionally rough due to mine and Markie's day job schedules. Markie's schedule is about to open up a tad. Mine will hopefully be changing soon too, but I don't have a definite on that yet.

Thank you both so much for taking the time to respond. This has been incredibly helpful! I'm going to try to see what I can pin down. Hopefully we can do at least one event each month. We're running out of January, so we'll be trying to put something together for February. I may message you guys with further questions for specifics soon. Thanks again!

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