Yuri's Night

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

Yuri's Night
Classic Yuri's Night 'Yurihead' logo (2021—present)
GenreSpace exploration
Date(s)April 12
InauguratedApril 12, 2001
Commemorates flight of Vostok 1 in 1961

Yuri's Night is an international celebration held every April 12 to commemorate milestones in space exploration. It is named for the first human to launch into space, Yuri Gagarin, who flew the Vostok 1 spaceship on April 12, 1961. In 2011, Yuri's Night was celebrated at over 567 events in 75 countries on seven continents.[1] Yuri's Night is often called the "World Space Party".[2] The launch of STS-1, the first Space Shuttle mission, is also honored, as it was launched 20 years to the day after Vostok 1, on April 12, 1981 (although the date of STS-1 is just a coincidence, the launch having had been delayed for two days due to a technical problem).[3]


The goal of Yuri's Night is to increase public interest in space exploration and to inspire a new generation of explorers. Driven by space-inspired artistic expression and culminating in a worldwide network of annual celebrations and educational events, Yuri's Night creates a global community of young people committed to shaping the future of space exploration while developing responsible leaders and innovators with a global perspective.[4] These global events are a showcase for elements of culture that embrace space including music, dance, fashion, and art.[5]

History of Yuri's Night[edit]

Yuri's Night was created in 2000 by Loretta Hidalgo Whitesides, George T. Whitesides and Trish Garner. The first Yuri's Night was held on April 12, 2001, exactly 40 years after the launch of Vostok 1.[6] Since 1962, April 12 has been celebrated in Russia (formerly the Soviet Union) as Cosmonautics Day (Russian: День Космонавтики)[7] and since 2011 internationally as the International Day of Human Space Flight.

The 2004 Yuri's Night event in Los Angeles was attended by space-related figures including author Ray Bradbury, space tourist Dennis Tito, X-Prize founder Peter Diamandis, *NSYNC's Lance Bass, and Nichelle Nichols (Uhura from the original Star Trek series). The event included a large party with two dance floors and world-class DJs.[8]

The 2007 event in the San Francisco Bay Area was held at NASA Ames Research Center at Moffett Field in Mountain View, CA. The event featured artistic installations, technology demonstrations, and DJ music continuing through dawn of the following day.[9]

April 2011 marked the 50th anniversary of Gagarin's historic first flight.[6] Over 100,000 people attended 567 Yuri's Night parties in 75 countries,[10] and the crew of Expedition 27 recorded a Yuri's Night celebratory greeting from the International Space Station.[11]

In April 2021, Yuri's Night was held virtually amid the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic. The event consisted of a hosted global live stream alongside some private, ticketed virtual events. Some notable guests included Brian May, Bill Nye, Tim Dodd, and Richard Branson.[12]

In 2022, during the Russian invasion of Ukraine, the Space Foundation announced that it would change the name of its 2022 Yuri's Night celebrations from "Yuri's Night" to "A Celebration of Space: Discover What's Next" as part of a large-scale boycott of Russia in solidarity with Ukraine because Yuri Gagarin was born in Russia. Gagarin's spaceflight was flown in the name of the entire Soviet Union, dissolved in 1991, which included among other Soviet Republics, both Russia and Ukraine.[13]

Yuri's Night today[edit]

Yuri's Night events "combine space-themed partying with education and outreach". Parties and events are held at NASA centers, museums, planetariums, schools, bars, nightclubs, houses, and other locations.[10] Often, guests are encouraged to dress up in various space-themed attire to add to the ambiance of the show. Space-themed art, sculptures and guests are often showcased at the events. Event sizes range from small to large and often attract large crowds with headlining musical acts such as Les Claypool, N*E*R*D, Common,[14] NASA, and The Crystal Method.[15]

Yuri's Night has been celebrated in locations including Reno,[16] Ottawa,[17][18] Los Angeles,[19] the San Francisco Bay Area,[20] Huntsville, Alabama,[21] New Orleans,[22] Inverness,[23] Stockholm, Tel Aviv, Tokyo, Lisbon,[24] Helsinki,[25] Afghanistan, Nairobi,[26] Latvia,[27] Romania, Peru, Antarctica, and the International Space Station,[28] in addition to many other locations and virtual online celebrations.[29]

Yuri's Night is organized on a global level by an all-volunteer "Executive Team",[30] which provides logistical and promotional support to Yuri's Night events worldwide. Individual organizers are responsible for registering and running their local events.[31]

Photo gallery[edit]

See also[edit]


  1. ^ "Yuri's Night Event Data". Retrieved October 13, 2018.
  2. ^ "Darwin's Day to Yuri's Night: some science dates to remember". The Guardian. September 20, 2014. Retrieved January 17, 2015.
  3. ^ "STS-1".
  4. ^ Whitesides, Loretta Hidalgo (April 11, 2008). "Yuri's Night: The Complete World Space Party Users Guide". Wired. ISSN 1059-1028. Retrieved January 30, 2019.
  5. ^ Ryan Kobrick, R. Brice Russ, and Timothy Bailey (2011). Yuri's Night: Linking the World Together with an International Space Celebration. Retrieved September 2, 2014, from http://arc.aiaa.org/doi/abs/10.2514/6.2011-5175.
  6. ^ a b Teague, Jason Cranford (February 14, 2011). "Celebrate 50 Years of Human Space Flight on Yuri's Night". Wired. Retrieved April 4, 2011.
  7. ^ Государственная Дума. Федеральный закон №32-ФЗ от 13 марта 1995 г. «О днях воинской славы и памятных датах России», в ред. Федерального закона №59-ФЗ от 10 апреля 2009 г «О внесении изменения в статью 1.1 федерального закона "О днях воинской славы и памятных датах России"». Вступил в силу со дня официального опубликования. Опубликован: "Российская Газета", №52, 15 марта 1995 г. (State Duma. Federal Law #32-FZ of March 13, 1995 On the Days of Military Glory and the Commemorative Dates in Russia, as amended by the Federal Law #59-FZ of April 10, 2009 On Amending Article 1.1 of the Federal Law "On the Days of Military Glory and the Commemorative Dates in Russia". Effective as of the day of the official publication.).
  8. ^ "4/12: 2004 Yuri's Night world space party – collectSPACE: Messages". www.collectspace.com.
  9. ^ Beale, Scott (April 14, 2007). "Photos of Yuri's Night Bay Area 2007, A Giant Party at NASA". Laughing Squid. Retrieved February 9, 2014.
  10. ^ a b "About Yuri's Night". Yuri's Night.
  11. ^ "Yuri's Night 2011 International Space Station Crew: 50th Anniversary of Human Spaceflight". April 11, 2011 – via YouTube.
  12. ^ "2021 Global Livestream – Yuri's Night". April 11, 2021. Archived from the original on April 11, 2021. Retrieved April 12, 2021.
  13. ^ Al-Sibai, Noor (March 16, 2022). "Space Conference Censors Name of First Human in Space Because He Was Russian". Futurism. Retrieved April 18, 2023.
  14. ^ "Yuri's Night Bay Area". Yuri's Night Bay Area. Retrieved January 30, 2019.
  15. ^ "Yuri's Night 2019 featuring The Crystal Method at The Bluebird". Eventbrite. Retrieved January 30, 2019.
  16. ^ "54 photos: Hipsters ... in space! Yuri's Night 2018 in Reno". Reno Gazette Journal. Retrieved January 30, 2019.
  17. ^ "Yuri's Night at the Canada Aviation and Space Museum—04.13.18 – Apt613". apt613.ca. Retrieved January 30, 2019.
  18. ^ "Yuri's Night". Eventbrite. Retrieved January 30, 2019.
  19. ^ Lloyd, Jonathan (April 12, 2011). "Yuri's Night Is Your Night to Party". NBC Southern California.
  20. ^ https://www.flickr.com/photos/cameravox/sets/72157604516260066/ (Account required)
  21. ^ "Yuri's Night Huntsville – April 7, 2012". February 27, 2013. Archived from the original on February 27, 2013.
  22. ^ "Yuris's Night New Orleans, Louisiana – Yuri's Night Live". May 25, 2013. Archived from the original on May 25, 2013.
  23. ^ "Yuri's Night – Iverness, Scotland – Yuri's Night Live". May 25, 2013. Archived from the original on May 25, 2013.
  24. ^ "Portugal". European Space Agency.
  25. ^ http://meridiaani.org/index.php/yuri-s-night Yuri's Night
  26. ^ "Yuri's Night at KASA/Tunapanda Institute". Africa Space Workshop. July 31, 2019.
  27. ^ "Yuri's Night Latvia – Yuri's Night Live". May 25, 2013. Archived from the original on May 25, 2013.
  28. ^ "Cosmic Log – Feeling down about spaceflight? Lift your spirits with Yuri's Night". April 13, 2012. Archived from the original on April 13, 2012.
  29. ^ "Yuri's Night Global Event List". Yuri's Night.
  30. ^ "Executive Team Profiles". Yuri's Night.
  31. ^ "About Yuri's Night". Yuri's Night. Retrieved January 30, 2019.

External links[edit]