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Isle of Wight Children will be able to explore outer space this February half term thanks to several exciting space-themed sessions at the IW Story Festival, which is taking place on Friday 21st and Saturday 22nd February at the Riverside Centre, Newport.

There will be an opportunity to explore the night sky in the Isle of Wight Planetarium’s astrodome This man-made universe is guaranteed to stimulate your imagination; taking you places you have never been before, from the surface of the Moon, to the depths of outer space – and you don’t even have to leave your seat!

Uber-illustrator Nick Sharratt will also be exploring the wider universe, through the fabulous pictures in new book, You Choose in Space. You can join Nick on an amazing intergalactic adventure. He’ll be doing lots of drawing, playing space-themed games and you can help him invent some hilarious new space creatures. Fancy dress encouraged – he says that astronauts and space monsters will be most welcome at his session!

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Nick’s other much-loved picture books include You Choose, Shark in the Park and Pants. He’s also the illustrator of Jacqueline Wilson’s Tracy Beaker series of books.

Local author Peta will also be at the festival, encouraging youngsters to appreciate the dark skies of the Isle of Wight, which inspired her book, Jacob Starke Loves The Dark and which are recognised in the UNESCO Biosphere Reserve status which the Isle of Wight achieved last year. There will be an opportunity to create a night sky, listen to the story about the importance of darkness – not just for stargazing, but for all living things – and to turn yourself into a nocturnal animal by creating your own mask.

You can find out more and book tickets for these sessions and the rest of the festival programme at www.iwstoryfestival.com.

The event will take place between 10:30-16:00 each day.

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