Tuesday 16 January 2018

Brilliant 'star' in our eyes as space station blazes trail across Irish skies

The International Space Station will blaze across Irish skies over the next couple of nights.

You can get the exact time to watch it on Astronomy Ireland's website www.astronomy.ie from noon each day.

There are six astronauts on board the $100bn (€79bn) space station, the most expensive object ever built. To the naked eye it looks like a brilliant 'star' that outshines every real star in the sky for one or two minutes as it crosses the sky.

David Moore, editor of Astronomy Ireland's magazine, said: "ISS is up to 100 times brighter than the brightest star in the sky when it flies over. It is a truly remarkable sight that everyone in Ireland can see at the same time."

There is also a good chance of displays of the Northern Lights (aurora borealis) over the next few days that may be seen from any part of Ireland.

Astronomy Ireland is urging people to watch the northern sky for the aurora every night and report what they see by emailing observe@astronomy.ie so that all reports can be included in the society's new magazine Astronomy Ireland.

Peaking interest in Everest adventure

Ian Taylor, who in 2008 became the youngest Irishman to climb Mount Everest, will be giving a lecture in the Dublin store 53 Degrees North in Blanchardstown on Wednesday, June 20, at 6.45pm.

He will share his experiences of conquering the world's highest mountain -- an inspiring story of team work, persistence and success.

Ian will be joined by Cian O'Brolchain, who recently reached the summit of Mount Everest.

To book your seat simply email info@53degreesnorth.ie with 'Ian Taylor Lecture' in the subject line.

Cuppa and chat at Alzheimer Cafe

TEA and conversation are on the menu at Ireland's first ever Alzheimer Cafe which was officially launched in Dublin last week.

It's part of a growing worldwide movement aimed at giving practical support and reducing the stigma around dementia.

Once a month people with Alzheimer's disease, their families and health professionals gather to socialise and discuss crucial health and emotional issues in a friendly, relaxed atmosphere over tea and cake.

"It has helped me so much. I'd be lost without it," said one woman who cares for her mother who has dementia. Others have described it as a "lifeline".

There are 42,000 people in Ireland who have Alzheimer's or other dementias. As the population ages, the numbers are set to triple over the next 30 years to 140,000, making it vital that practical support measures are in place to help families cope.

The Alzheimer Cafe evening takes place on the second Thursday of every month, in the Avila Centre, Donnybrook, Dublin 4, and the talks are guided by those in attendance.

Cuisle centre celebrates 15th birthday

Cuisle Holiday Centre, the Irish Wheelchair Association's national holiday centre and Ireland's leading wheelchair-accessible resort, kicked off its 15th anniversary celebrations with a summer barbecue last week.

Speaking at the event Jean Coleman, manager at Cuisle, in Co Roscommon, said: "Fifteen years ago, holidays for people with disabilities were very different. The Irish Wheelchair Association and volunteers brought groups of people on holidays to different parts of the country. Permission was sought to use local schools and beds were borrowed from any source.

"I'm glad to be able to say that things have moved on significantly since then. Today we can offer people with disabilities a very different experience. Cuisle Holiday Centre is Ireland's leading wheelchair-accessible resort with 34 fully accessible bedrooms, nursing care, a wide range of aids, a restaurant and bar, leisure suite with Jacuzzi, sauna and gym, fishing, indoor games room and a fleet of accessible transport."

Sunday Independent

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