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The Great Pluto Debate -- February 4, 2007

A year ago today, NASA launched the New Horizons spacecraft to Pluto. Therefore, this is a good time to remind folks about The Great Pluto Debate coming up on February 4.

I know that sometimes this journal might seem like all Pluto, all the time, even though we have the savepluto LiveJournal for Pluto news. But I want to mention the Debate here, because the event will be of interest to anyone fascinated by astronomy and our solar system. It's not just for Pluto supporters, but for anyone interested in the question of how we should classify Pluto.

The flyer for the event is posted at http://savepluto.livejournal.com/10943.html. I have to say that I am very impressed by what the Clay Center Observatory managed to do. Panelists for the debate include Owen Gingerich, the chair of the IAU Planet Definition Committee, and Brian Marsden, the Director of the Minor Planets Center. Both of these gentleman have agreed to come over from the Harvard-Smithsonian Center for Astrophysics to participate, which boggles my mind as much as it delights me.

I'm asking for your help in publicizing it, especially if you're local to Boston. If you're a teacher or a parent, please bring this event to the attention of your school. The Debate is appropriate for ages 8 and up, and schools may find it valuable to send their students.

And if you're interested in attending, please go to http://www.claycenter.org/astro and make sure to register for the event. Seating is limited, so register as early as you can.

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