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This Weekend, Joshua​ ​Tree​ ​National​ ​Park​ ​Hosts the Night​ ​Sky​ ​Festival​

By Minah Ha

From​ ​November​ ​10th-12th,​ ​Joshua​ ​Tree​ ​National​ ​Park​ ​will​ ​be​ ​partnering​ ​with​ ​the National​ ​Park​ ​Service​ ​in​ ​order​ ​to​ ​bring​ ​star​ ​enthusiasts​ ​the​ ​Night​ ​Sky​ ​Festival.​ ​This​ ​is​ ​the​ ​third annual​ ​Night​ ​Sky​ ​Festival​ ​that​ ​the​ ​park​ ​has​ ​hosted​ ​for​ ​those​ ​who​ ​want​ ​to​ ​sit​ ​under​ ​a​ ​sky​ ​full​ ​of stars.Although​ ​this​ ​event​ ​is​ ​free​ ​of​ ​charge,​ ​if​ ​you​ ​decide​ ​to​ ​come​ ​on​ ​November​ ​10th,​ ​you​ ​will have​ ​to​ ​pay​ ​a​ ​park​ ​entrance​ ​fee​ ​of​ ​$30.​ ​However,​ ​because​ ​of​ ​Veteran’s​ ​Day​ ​weekend,​ ​there​ ​will be​ ​no​ ​park​ ​entrance​ ​fee​ ​on​ ​November​ ​11th​ ​and​ ​12th! Joshua​ ​Tree​ ​National​ ​Park,​ ​located​ ​three​ ​hours​ ​away​ ​from​ ​Los​ ​Angeles​​ ​is​ ​known​ ​for​ ​its​ ​unique​ ​Joshua​ ​trees​ ​and​ ​desert​ ​flowers​ ​in​ ​the​ ​day​ ​to​ ​it’s​ ​breathtaking​ ​desert stars​ ​in​ ​the​ ​night.​ ​Because​ ​the​ ​park​ ​itself​ ​is​ ​located​ ​far​ ​from​ ​big​ ​cities,​ ​the​ ​lack​ ​of​ ​urban​ ​lights allows​ ​stars​ ​to​ ​be​ ​clearly​ ​seen.​ ​Thus,​ ​star​ ​enthusiasts​ ​in​ ​Southern​ ​California​ ​flock​ ​to​ ​Joshua​ ​Tree to​ ​stargaze​ ​and​ ​explore​ ​the​ ​many​ ​constellations​ ​that​ ​they​ ​can’t​ ​see​ ​in​ ​their​ ​own​ ​urban environments​ ​due​ ​to​ ​light​ ​pollution.​ ​Many​ ​describe​ ​the​ ​desert​ ​stars​ ​in​ ​Joshua​ ​Tree​ ​as​ ​millions​ ​of specks​ ​in​ ​the​ ​sky​ ​and​ ​when​ ​sitting​ ​under​ ​it,​ ​you​ ​can’t​ ​help​ ​but​ ​to​ ​think​ ​about​ ​the​ ​vastness​ ​of​ ​the universe.

Beginning​ ​at​ ​5am,​ ​the​ ​Night​ ​Sky​ ​Festival​ ​will​ ​showcase​ ​various​ ​astronomy​ ​programs throughout​ ​the​ ​day.​ ​You​ ​can​ ​learn​ ​about​ ​the​ ​different​ ​constellational​ ​stories​ ​and​ ​folktales​ ​that have​ ​been​ ​passed​ ​down​ ​through​ ​storytellers​ ​and​ ​identify​ ​those​ ​stars​ ​in​ ​the​ ​sky.​ ​There​ ​will​ ​be​ ​park rangers,​ ​scientists,​ ​and​ ​astronomers​ ​explaining​ ​the​ ​various​ ​workings​ ​of​ ​our​ ​solar​ ​system​ ​to​ ​all those​ ​who​ ​want​ ​to​ ​learn​ ​about​ ​the ​science​ ​behind​ ​our​ ​stars​ ​as​ ​well!​ ​Additionally,​ ​at​ ​night, telescopes​ ​will​ ​be​ ​placed​ ​for​ ​viewers​ ​to​ ​get​ ​a​ ​clearer​ ​look​ ​at​ ​the​ ​stars​ ​and​ ​possibly​ ​the​ ​different planets!​ ​If​ ​the​ ​weather​ ​permits,​ ​you​ ​also​ ​might​ ​be​ ​able​ ​to​ ​get​ ​to​ ​clearly​ ​see​ ​the​ ​Milky​ ​Way​ ​as well!

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Spending Mid-Autumn Festival Without My Family

By Sarah Ta

My family is not the celebratory type, so most holidays end up passing without so much as an acknowledgement. However, Mid-Autumn Festival is one that we always celebrate. Mid-Autumn Festival is a traditional Chinese holiday that occurs on the 15th day of the 8th lunar month. During ancient China, it was a day to celebrate the autumn harvest and to worship the moon, but over the years, it has shifted to become more of a day to spend time with family. Traditions today include eating mooncake with family, relaxing together under the stars, and admiring the full moon. Many people believe that the moon is brightest on this particular night, which is why admiring the moon remains a significant tradition.

For the past eighteen years of my life, I’ve always celebrated Mid-Autumn Festival with my family. Our way of celebrating is just sitting together after dinner and eating mooncake. As simple as it is, it gives us a chance to relax and enjoy each other’s presence. However, this will be the first year that I will be spending it away from them. Since Mid-Autumn Festival lands on Wednesday October 4th this year, I won’t be able to go home. Spending time with my family was something I took for granted, but I now finally realize that I should’ve appreciated it more.

To help lessen some of the homesickness, my friends and I are planning to head over to Chinatown’s Mid-Autumn Moon Festival on October 7th to celebrate. Even though the festival is a few days after Mid-Autumn Festival, I’m sure that it will still be a lot of fun. I’m really touched that my friends suggested this, since none of them come from an Asian background. I can’t wait to show them how fun Chinese festivals can be.

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Senior Year: A Bucket List

By Kurt Ibaraki

This is it. This is my last semester at USC. These past three years have gone by so fast. I remember how excited I was when I first got on campus. My parents helped settle me into my new dorm room and after a couple of hours of reorganizing my room, they left me to start my new life at USC. The first couple of weeks were not easy, but slowly, USC became my second home. USC has so much to offer and I wish that I had more time. However, there are still a couple of months left for me. As a result, I have compiled a small bucket list of things that I want to do before I leave.

First, I would love to study in every library here at USC. I have only been to Leavey, Doheny, and the VKC library in my three years here. More often than not, I have spent countless hours studying at Leavey, but with so many other libraries available, a change of pace would be nice.

Second, I want to enter every building. Being a Neuroscience major, I often find myself in SGM, THH, and ZHS. While there are so many buildings here, I have probably only been in half of them. I would love to see the insides of the buildings in which business and engineering majors spend the most time.

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