Monday, April 18, 2016

Scenes From Yuri's Night 2016

By Bixyl Shuftan

Tuesday April 12 was "Yuri's Night," an international celebration among space fans to celebrate the anniversary of the launch of the first human in space, Yuri Gagarin, in 1961. Sometimes called the "world space party," there are small events around the world. Among them was one set up by the International Space Museum and the National Space Society's chapter in Second Life (more info can be read at the event's website -

 The party started at Noon SL time high above the Spaceport Bravo sim at (124/128/1601), with Arisia Vita playing "Russian-inspired piano selections." From 12:30 to 4PM was the "long party," with Eifachfilm Vacirca and Emileigh Starbrook DJed "An eclectic supersonic flight through space and time." I arrived a little after 3, one telling me, "It's thinned out some since the start, but we've had great music and discussions."

There were freebies available for those dropping in, "Be sure to grab the goodies from below the stage." The package contained a jumpsuit, pendant, helmet, a "I (heart) Yuri" t-shirt, a mug with a drinking animation, and a Russian dance animation.

Some people were enjoying them right at the scene.

"Oh, and for the curious, the bread and salt on the tables here is the traditional Russian symbol of hospitality. ... During Apollo-Soyuz, the Cosmonauts greeted the Astronauts with salt tablets and crackers! ... ts a big cultural thing in that part of the world." Someone made a joke about salt licks for deer, "explains a lot about the Russians, I think."

Someone had a cosmonaut suit from the first Yuri's Night celebration in Second Life.

And where there is space, there are aliens.

Asterion Coen gets a little "cubed."

A look at the dance area from a distance with the viewer at Midnight. It looked pretty "Far out."

At 4PM, the party moved to the Sagan Planetarium at Aspen (200/120/3730)

The Planetarium's designated dance area was set up in their Solar system display. Normally the music stream would be playing "the audio portion of the tour." This time it was playing music. For a few minutes, it would show the Sun and planets going around it.

Then it would switch to one at a time.

Clicking on the planet would show a cross-section view.

Above the planets, and the moons in orbit around them, there were some statistics displayed overhead.

This included Pluto, which since the discovery of certain bodies beyond it's orbit in the first years of the 21st Century has been reclassified as a "dwarf planet" and not a full one since 2006. Still a source of controversy among space nuts

There was a contest for the best science-fiction look, and there were a number.

 Among them, one guy in a saucer abducting a steer, "Eep! It's molesting a cow!" "Yay cow molestation!"

And yours truly got into the act: "Foxes in space."

At one point, someone rezzed a platoon of "Star Wars" stormtroopers. Oddly, one of them was pink, for reasons not given.

There was a "symphony of science-fiction mashups," from theme musics of "Star Trek" and "Star Wars," to "Doctor Who," "Star Blazers," Battlestar Galactica," "Mars Attacks," and more. Of the "Star Wars," someone joked, "Careful ... , this is technically Disney music now, and you know how lawsuit happy they can be about public performances."

There was also a triva contest, in which winners for a few Lindens for right answers. And there were a number of discussions about science-fiction and space science.

It was a fun time for sci-fi fans and space nuts alike.

Bixyl Shuftan

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