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The Magic Dome
December 18 - 30, 2010

DJS Constantine

ODEJ Constantine

Bringing Astronomy to the People,
the Sirius (Pronounce it "Serious") way !

- Two weeks of Open Doors on Astronomy at the CSP (Complex Sportif de Proximité) of Boussouf for the benefit of the public, and in particular the youth, from all over the Constantine Wilaya. All in all, at least two thousand people visited the exhibits and many of them the planetarium shows. The planetarium was brought to us by the Centre-Science (CCSTI) at Orléans in France via the CCF of Constantine.

- Prior to that, the Planetarium was for one full week at Mentouri University instead of two. See here why. Carrying out the job in spite of adversity...

- In addition, a 2-day astronomy training session was organised in coordination with ODEJ- Constantine (Office des Etablissements de Jeunes) for the benefit of the animateurs of the Constantine Wilaya's "Maisons de Jeunes". They went through the whole formation of a perfect amateur astronomeur, from knowing the constellations, to setting up a telescope, to model making.The instructors were all members of the Association. Click here to see the program (In Arabic).

And here the Mentouri Univ. ridiculous poster

Sirius
Training the Troops ...
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The regular Saturday weekly meeting was turned into a training camp for the Sirius members.

Their mission: operating the planetarium during the next 4 weeks: Two weeks at Mentouri University and two at the Boussouf''s CSP.

Shifts were established during the whole period, and a schedule sheet was readied for signing up for the volunteers.

Getting Ready: Setting the Exhibit & the Planetarium
at the Boussouf Cultural & Sport Complex- Constantine

Setting up the exhibit...

The CPS's gymnasium was put at our disposal for those open days in addition to a teaching room. We had indeed a great cooperation between ODEJ and in particular Mohamed El-Almi his director, the director of the CSP of Boussouf, and Sirius.
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It was an unending flux of groups coming from all over the Constantine Wilaya. Some days we had up to few hundreds.
.Sirius Algeria
First getting the basics on Astronomy: A 30mn PowerPoint presentation. Then a tour of the exhibit. Finally a planetarium session. All for free!

Touring the astronomy exhibit...
Sirius Algeria astronomie

Inside the dome
Planetarium Algeria Constantine
At times the number of visitors was so large that we had to resort to overcrowding in order not to have a too long waiting period.
Sirius Algeria astronomie

We also had at time to restrict access, short of turning to crowd control...

The rallying point was certainly the information desk with various free stuff and others products sold at a symbolic price.

On the spot competitions were organized with many give away gifts for the delight of the youngsters.

Repairing the projector when it broke down...
Sirius Algeria astronomie
Showing off their bounties. Visitor got various astronomical prizes if not a flyer on the Association.
Sirius Algeria astronomie
Some of the Sirius volunteers: Meriem, Yacoub, Asma, Houria Aziza, Rafik, Bilel, Abdou, and Fateh squatting,

.... and more: Aya, Omar, Farès, Zineabiddine, Walid, Hafsa (partly hidden) and Aicha.
The "Dome" at Mentouri University (4- 9 December 2010)
Carrying out the job in spite of adversity...
Université Mentouri
Despite the absolute indifference of the Mentouri University (No advertising, no support of any kind...), which was a partner with the CCF-Constantine in the program along Sirius, the dedication of the Sirius members was able to turn it into a success.
http://umc.edu.dz/
One should mention the active obstruction to the program by the CNAV (the University's audiovisual center) where the planetarium was hosted. More here

Here among the audience two impromptu visitors, Dr N.Seghouani from the CRAAG at Algiers, (Back row in the middle) and Dr.N.Guessoum (Back row at right) from the American University at Sharjah.

Entering the "black hole" ...

Crossing the BH horizon without harm...
The Despicable Behaviour of the CNAV's Director, and the Tale of Two Posters: Mediocrity and Incury at its best
Centre National Audiovisuel: CNAV  Saber and Omar in action
When the CNAV's director reached the point of insults and physical aggression towards some of our members, we lodged a strongly worded complaint with the central administration of the University, which didn't wish to pursue the matter further concerning this gross misbehavior. We thus regretfully had to shorten the program to one week instead of the two planned. The losers where the students and the Faculty members which were thus deprived of the spectacle by the despicable behaviour of the CNAV's director. The University administration didn't display any high standard of conduct during this week long activities by the 12 or so volunteers from Sirius. It didn't provide any of he things they promised us (some clerks to assist us with the student crowd, security personal, lunches...), but added insult to injury by undertaking basically no advertising campaign despite the previous agreement, putting up instead a miserable poster without even mentioning Sirius as a partner on it although we did all the job! See the ridiculous poster they put up in few spots on the campus, discarding our nicely designed one we provided to them adapted from the one we designed for the ODEJ program.
The Full Sequence...


The "Dome" at Massinissa's Youth Activity Center
at "Nouvelle Ville" in the suburb of Constantine

The planetarium was there for one full day and received many groups for a planetarium session preceded by a talk on Astronomy

Implementing the shift system: one group get the introductory talk through a PowerPoint presentation while the other one is inside the dome admiring a virtual sky...

Coming out of the hole...
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planetarium Algérie
Boussouf Algerie
Sunset over Boussouf .

Drawing the curtain on a very active Winter vacations...

 

 
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