Friday, October 28, 2011

Today is the First Ever World Wide Space-O-Lantern Carving Day!

Yuri Gagarkin - Space-O-Lantern
A Yuri Gagarin Space-O-Lantern (I call him, Gagarkin) by me, Rachel Hobson. 

That's me with the knife and crazed look in my zombie eyes ... Ahhh ... college days. 

Y'all already know that I'm a massive space geek, but what you might not know about me is that I'm also a huge, HUGE fan of carving pumpkins. Ever since I was a little kid, one of my very favorite parts of Halloween was carving jack-o-lanterns. I was always in charge of scooping out the pumpkin guts, because not only did I not mind manhandling the slimy innards of a pumpkin, I relished it. In college, my friends and I would have pumpkin carving parties that were great fun. We'd line our jack-o-lanterns up at the end of the party and get a great picture of them all lit and ready for the front porch.

Awesome STS-120 Space-O-Lantern, carved by Liz Warren

A while back, fellow Space Tweep and brilliant scientist for the International Space Station, Liz Warren (aka - @spasmunkey) posted pictures of the amazing space-o-lanterns she's been carving for ages. Most replicate the patches of various shuttle and ISS missions, and they are all spectacular. She's even posted a time-lapse of a pumpkin-in-process. From the first time I saw them, I joked with Liz that we needed to host a Space-O-Lantern carving party where we could get our space geek friends together and carve pumpkins with space-y images. Last week, we did just that. A small group of Space Tweep friends came over to my house and we spread out in the studio and carved the geekiest, most awesome space-o-lanterns you could ever hope to see. It was a total blast. At the end of the party, we lined the space-o-lanterns up outside and photographed them like we were nerdy paparazzi. We then rolled the telescope out on to the back deck and looked at the moons and stripes of Jupiter. It. Was. Awesome.

Wow! The pumpkins all lit up look awesome!
Our line up of Space-O-Lanterns: L to R Yuri GagarKin (by Rachel Hobson), Space Shuttle Tribute (by Robert Pearlman), Timmy from Think Geek (by Liz Warren), Space Shuttle landing (by Carl Carruthers), Ghosts - we like to think they are space-y ghosts! (by Sheila) Thanks to our carving cheerleader extraordinaire, Cindy, for taking pictures and live-tweeting the event! 

A few days later, we joked on Twitter that there should be a World-Wide Space-O-Lantern Carving Day and decided that we didn't even need to wait until next year to start it. So here we are. The First Ever World-Wide Space-O-Lantern Carving Day, October 28, 2011. What does that mean? Today is a day to carve - on your own or with friends - a pumpkin with some kind of space themed image. Rockets, shuttles, planets - you name it. Anything that celebrates space exploration goes. At our Space-O-Lantern carving party, we had shuttle pumpkins, a Wernher von Braun pumpkin, a Timmy (Think Geek) pumpkin and a Yuri Gagarin pumpkin (or Gagarkin, as I liked to call him).

Awesome STS-130 Space-O-Lantern by Liz Warren 

Call your friends and set up a Space-O-Lantern carving party. Share ideas for space-y images and get carving. Share telescopes and look to the skies for even more inspiration. Live-tweet your carving parties with the hashtag #SpaceOLantern. When you've carved your Space-O-Lanterns, be sure to add them to the Space-O-Lantern Flickr group. From here on out, the last Friday before Halloween will now be known as World-Wide Space-O-Lantern Carving Day, so start planning your carving parties now! Next year, I'm totally making a Hubblekin.

Space Pumpkin
Awesome planetary Space-O-Lantern by Jen Scheer

1 comment :

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Have fun and be nice! :)