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Paper: Virtual Visits to the Radio Universe
Volume: 531, ASP2020: Embracing the Future: Astronomy Teaching and Public Engagement
Page: 42
Authors: Ash, S.
Abstract: Pre-COVID-19, the Very Large Array was open to visitors from sunrise to sunset, 363 days a year, with free guided tours offered six times a month. But in March 2020, we closed the site to the general public and have no plans to reopen until June 2021. We initially pivoted to behind the scenes STEAM education projects but as we observed multiple institutions venturing into the world of virtual tours, we decided to explore how we could join them. At the time of this writing, we have hosted four Virtual VLA Tours, three Virtual Outreach events, and a day-long Virtual 40th Anniversary of the VLA program. All held via Zoom, we have reached well over 3000 people from 50+ countries. In this talk, we will present these events in more detail, discuss our lessons learned to date, and preview virtual events we hope to offer in 2021.
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