AstroBox is a quarterly space & astronomy discovery box for all ages.
I. Love. Space. I’ve had a chance to review some boxes with space/astronomy themes before, but never a box dedicated SOLELY to the big wide universe beyond our little third rock from the sun. (I was one of the people outraged when they declassified Pluto as a planet, okay?) I am the living embodiment of the Space Core from Portal 2.
DEAL: Get $5 off your first box with coupon code HELLO5.
$1 from every Winter AstroBox sold will be donated to help restore the Pluto Discovery Telescope at Lowell Observatory. Details here: https://lowell.edu/priority-projects/pluto-telescope/
The Winter theme was Pluto! New Horizons is the space probe that launched in 2006. It took New Horizons nine years to reach Pluto, which it did last summer – the pictures it took were amazing. Pluto is also a planet of note in that it’s no longer actually considered a planet – it’s considered a minor planet as of 2006. Nonetheless, it’s still fascinating to read about and see the awesome data New Horizons has sent back!
While the Fall box included a mini magazine including product information, I didn’t receive anything like that this month so some information/details might be incomplete.
New Horizons Tee – Astrobox always sends a properly nerdy tee. This one has a cross section of the New Horizons probe, with all of the instruments labeled. The shirt is a very soft material which I like! I think it’s a ladies’ fit but it’s an M so it’s a bit big which I don’t mind.
The Pluto Files by Neil DeGrasse Tyson – So excited to read this! This book dives into our fascination with Pluto, as well as the controversy around why it was reclassified as a minor planet. I love Neil DeGrasse Tyson’s podcast so I’m excited to get into this.
When the Rose Center for Earth and Space at the American Museum of Natural History reclassified Pluto as an icy comet, the New York Times proclaimed on page one, “Pluto Not a Planet? Only in New York.” Immediately, the public, professionals, and press were choosing sides over Pluto’s planethood. Pluto is entrenched in our cultural and emotional view of the cosmos, and Neil deGrasse Tyson, award-winning author and director of the Rose Center, is on a quest to discover why. He stood at the heart of the controversy over Pluto’s demotion, and consequently Plutophiles have freely shared their opinions with him, including endless hate mail from third-graders. With his inimitable wit, Tyson delivers a minihistory of planets, describes the oversized characters of the people who study them, and recounts how America’s favorite planet was ousted from the cosmic hub.
Pluto Beach Ball – This was the spoiler! It’s huge and incredibly detailed – the photography is also likely courtesy of New Horizons. It comes with a patch kit as well, which is good because there’s definitely a hole in mine somewhere. The ball is HUGE and was hard to get in the frame in its entirety!
A paper tag with information about New Horizons was included. Now that New Horizons has made its flyby of Pluto, it’s on its way to study more of the Kulper Belt.
Expedition 50 Crew Patch – Astrobox always sends along the latest crew patch, which I am having so much fun collecting. Expeditions are the designation for flights up to the International Space Station.
Pluto Calendar – What an awesome idea! Perfectly time appropriate too, since we’re almost into the new year – eek! This item is an Astrobox exclusive!
The first thing I always do with a new calendar is check out the photo for my birthday month. Does anyone else do this?
Digital Print – Last month included a digital painting and this month there’s another one! This is a depiction of the surface of Pluto, presumably with its moons in the background.
Skywatch Magazine 2017 – Skywatch is a popular magazine for astronomers both beginner and experienced. It includes information on sightings throughout the year from eclipses, planets, meteor showers, and everything else up there.
The contents are really informative, and I can’t wait to get into reading it.
Some other little items include a bookmark and a very detailed pin of Pluto, which has writing along the edges saying it’s using photos from New Horizons.
AstroBox is a love letter to the world beyond Earth – and I love that everything was appropriate for all ages, whether you’re a young kid craving an extra dose of science in school, or an adult interested in learning more. The book is what I’m most excited to get into, and it’s great to have another patch for my collection. I hope they return to their own information magazine though – it was full of information about the products.