By MIKE COURSON
Big bend pole
A space-themed weekend will take place on September 10 in Larned. That Saturday, the Santa Fe Trail Center and Fort Larned National Historic Site will host free hands-on and educational events for the public. The events are a celebration of the scientific achievements of the James Webb Telescope. Fort Larned Park Ranger Celeste Dixon offers a clue about the telescope.
“He takes pictures with infrared, which actually allows him to see past the clouds of dust that get in the way,” she said. “These clouds of dust in space block visible light, but infrared light passes through, allowing pictures to be taken much farther out in space and much clearer images than the ones that Hubble can get.”
The fun starts Saturday morning at 9 a.m. at the Santa Fe Trail Center. A “Walking the Galaxy” event outside will provide a scale demonstration of the size of the solar system. Kids can build a bead bracelet and learn about the life cycles of massive stars, and a “Meeting the Neighbors” program will discuss nearby planets and galaxies. A discussion on telescopes follows at 11 a.m.
“We’re going to be giving a lecture on, basically, the history of telescopes, starting with Clyde Tombaugh’s homemade telescope, who grew up near Burdett, and going all the way to James Webb,” said the director of the Santa Fe Trail Museum. . Seth McFarland.
After a brief hiatus, events resume at Fort Larned National Historic Site from 1 to 3:30 p.m. Programming will include rotating images of the Webb Telescope with a discussion of how it works. Hands-on activities include “packing a telescope” to show how Webb was launched into space and spinning a nebula using a salad spinner.
Admission is free for both events, but standard admission prices will apply for visits to the Santa Fe Trail Museum.
Fort Larned will also host free living history before Labor Day on Saturday, September 3. A blacksmith demonstration begins at 10 a.m., followed by a firearms demonstration with small arms and a howitzer at 11 a.m. Programs on Buffalo Soldiers, Drum Calls of the Civil War Era and Life in the officer rank follow in the afternoon. Admission is free for all events.