The funding will allow the NASA-affiliated attraction to purchase new telescopes that will improve the visitor experience during open observation nights.
MARTINSVILLE – Visit Morgan County has awarded funding to Link Observatory Space Science Institute through their Tourism Enhancement and Development Fund program. This program is intended to fund individual projects that help enhance existing visitor experiences or create new ones within Morgan County.
The amount awarded was $5,000. These funds will allow the Institute to purchase three new portable telescopes that they can set up on the observatory grounds to allow more visitors the opportunity to view the night skies at one time. This equipment can also be used for off-site events if needed.
“The historic Link Observatory and the public programming being presented there by Link Observatory Space Science Institute is one of our area’s most unique visitor experiences,” says Tosha Daugherty, executive director of Visit Morgan County. “We are pleased to be able to help improve that experience for our visitors. This is exactly the type of project that led us to create our TED Grant program.”
Link Observatory is located midway between Martinsville and Mooresville on Observatory Road. It was constructed in the 1930’s by Goethe Link and is now owned by Indiana University. Programming at the observatory is presented by the non-profit organization Link Observatory Space Science Institute, which was founded in 2012. The organization is dedicated to providing science education opportunities and inspiring students to pursue studies in science, technology, engineering and math.
“This is a fantastic opportunity for us to improve the experience for visitors to the historic Link Observatory. We can engage and inspire more students and the general public with the wonders of the universe with these additional telescopes. Our sincere appreciation for Visit Morgan County for this gift and the vision and foresight to help us attract more visitors to Morgan County and the historic Link Observatory. This will help us continue to pursue educational opportunities in science, technology, engineering and math”, said Greg McCauley, Executive Director of the Link Observatory Space Science Institute.
The Institute hosts three public events each month, a public observation night on the first Saturday of each Month, daytime hours for visitors on one Thursday per month, and their LinkLive presentations held at the Mooresville Public Library each month followed by observation at the Observatory. These new telescopes will help improve the experience at these public events as well as any potential group visits that might be scheduled.
About Link Observatory Space Science Institute
The Link Observatory Space Science Institute’s mission is to advance scholastic literacy of future generations with informal STEM education focused on NASA missions, astronomy, and space exploration; and to foster scientific curiosity and advance science literacy to cultivate and nurture the next generation of leaders. Join us as we share the wonders of the universe. www.linkobservatory.org
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Visit Morgan County promotes all of Morgan County as a travel destination in order to grow the economic impact of the tourism industry and support local business.