YDR Insider

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NewsVroom under the stars

The Moon family. (Yep, that truly is their last name) checks out the NewsVroom blog under the actual moon during a recent outing.

Update on March 28, 2013:

We received a very nice thank-you note from the York County Astronomical Society:

For myself and the York County Astronomical Society, I want to send a big thank you to Mr Matt Anderson, Ms Cathy Hirko and Ms Hannah Sawyer.  Their attending our Comet Starwatch at John C. Rudy County Park last Saturday evening (March 23, 2013) with the Newsvroom was a fantastic success.  And a special thank you for their wonderful news article and blog reports of the event.  I feel privileged to have met them and flattered for their including me in their story! 

Until next time, 
Greg Markowski 
Trustee – York County Astronomical Society

And we were happy to attend! Thanks Greg.

Original post: 

I’ll admit, I was a bit skeptical of the assignment.

Matt Anderson, one of multi-platform journalists from the night news desk, wanted to take the NewsVroom to a star-watching event at one of our York County parks.

Our van. On back park roads. In the dark.

I wasn’t sure it was going to work. I couldn’t have been more wrong.

We arrived  John Rudy Park at the observatory around 6:30 p.m.  on March 23.   The park is located in East Manchester Township and was about a  20-minute drive from our office in West Manchester Township.

I didn’t know it at the time, but dusk is really the best time to be observing the sky.

Within minutes of setup, we had folks wandering by and asking us what we were doing. Their curiosity was contagious. They wanted to learn as much about our jobs as we questioned them about theirs.

We had set up a live blog, which chronicled our night. Many weren’t aware of our online capabilities, especially when I was able to update the live blogging from my phone, in real time.

A crowd, bundled up because of the cold weather, submitted posts to our live blog on March 23.

And that truly gets to the heart of the NewsVroom. It’s educating the public on how we gather, report and share our news. Our tools are innovative and fast. As quickly as I was able to take a photo on my phone, I was able to post just as quickly to the blog.

Anderson showed attendees how to use the iPad to map out constellations:

Matt Anderson shows an iPad app that maps out constellations.

We shared the news of the star-gazers with our audience in real time.

It was cold, and I complained about that — just to be honest — but I had a great time.

We’ve been invited back to John Rudy Park.  We plan to make good on that invitation.

Read more: Hannah Sawyer covered the event for us.