The OSSIS Project on the Erie Trail
Opening: Our Solar System in Scale
The Constellation of Starke Creative Network is opening the Our Solar System in Scale ("OSSIS") project in a celebration set for October 16, 2022 from 11:00 am, CDT until 2:00 pm, CDT. The OSSIS project depicts the planets of our solar system in a scale of 1:355 million over several miles of the Erie Trail. Jacque Ryan, Director of Development at Starke Community Foundation, reflects that the celebration is "an opportunity for more people to come out to the Erie Trail" and explore OSSIS at the start of Main Street just east of the Hoosier Valley Rail Museum in North Judson. The planets are depicted on signs which include colorful scientific and cultural information.
Ryan invites visitors to head east from Main Street. She reflects the planets Mercury, Venus, Earth and Mars are an easy one-mile round trip to walk. "To get to the far flung gas giants, such as Jupiter and Neptune," a participant "will need to cover many miles, so bicycle travel is recommended. For context, Neptune, the final planet in the installation, is 8.5 miles from the starting point."
The Prairie Trails Club is part of a workgroup led by the Starke Community Foundation that designed and implemented the OSSIS Project. In cooperation with the Hoosier Valley Railroad Museum, the intention is for an in-scale Sun model to later be placed near Main Street. The Prairie Trails Club will also pursue placement at scale of a sign for the dwarf planet, Pluto, another two miles east of the Neptune sign on the PTC's recently-completed extension of the Erie Trail.
The OSSIS Project is expected to function as a dynamic system which will later include both onsite and online information and that will advance as scientific knowledge of our solar system advances.