The 7th day of IAO 2018 is dedicated to visiting the ancient city of Anuradhapura. The tour starts with an early breakfast in the hotel. The first stop was Ranmasu Uyana (Royal garden) to witness the Stargate of Sri Lankan is called “sakwala chakraya” which is a stone carving, and this has similar features of stargates at Peru and at Abu Ghurab in Egypt. Then the participant experience of scenic beauty Thisa wawa a manmade reservoir situated next to the Ranmasu Uyana. Then the crowd headed towards Dana Salawa an alms hall used to feed over 5000 monks. The next stop was the Abayagiriya Stupa one of the largest manmade structures in the ancient world. The participants had the opportunity to visit Jaya Sri Mahabodiya a sacred fig tree which is the southern branch of the Sri Maha Bodhi at Buddha Gaya in India under which Lord Buddha attained Enlightenment. The final stop was the Ruwanweli seya another large ancient stupa in Sri Lanka.
The practical rounds of the IAO 2018 were held in the 6th day. The evening was spent leisurely with recreational activities and local shopping.
The day 5 of IAO 2018 is a very enjoyable day. In the morning, the participant headed towards the down south for a river safari in Madu Ganga. Mada Ganga is a river open up into a large lagoon on its way to the Indian ocean. Buddhist temple and the Cinnamon Island were the major attractions in the river safari. In the evening an open mic session was held at the hotel hosted by the FOS Media. Every country performs an act related to their culture.
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The 4th day of IAO 2018 is a very long day for the participants. In the morning, participants were able to visit the Galle Face Green, an ocean-side urban park. While enjoying the view of the Indian Ocean, participant had an opportunity touch and feel local pythons and watch snake dance. Then the crew witness the Independent Square and them marched towards the Sri Lanka Planetarium for a special show. After lunch, Mr. Mahesh Herath conducted a very interesting lecture on exoplanets. The most challenging event of the day was the observational rounds. The observational rounds were conducted at the Arthur C Clarke Institute of Modern Technology. It was a long examination and the whole rounds were ended at 4.30 am of the next day.
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The 8th of October is the 3rd day of the event. The day started with the theoretical round. The examination was 4 h long. Then students, team leaders, and observers went to a shopping tour to Colombo. In the evening students had an opportunity to play with the telescope that they supposed to use in the observational rounds.
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The 7th of October 2018, day 2 is the inaugural day of the event. The inauguration was held at the Eagle’s Lakeside, Aththidiya. All participants escorted by Sri Lankan police from Pegasus Reef Hotel, Wattala. The inauguration was graced by guest including Professors from the Universities, Council member of SLAAS, Council members of the IPSL, Secretaries of the ministries and Scientist from the Arthur C Clarke Institute of Modern Technology. Professor Chandana Jayaratne the Chairman of the Local Organizing Committee welcomes the guests followed by the official declaration of the event by the Dr. Michael Gavrilov the Chairman of the International Astronomy Olympiad. The contestant parade was the next attraction of the event. The gathering was entertained by the cultural events and Sri Lankan martial arts performance. The event was concluded after-dinner reception.
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The competitors from all over the world are participating for the 23rd International Astronomy Olympiad in Colombo, Sri Lanka from 6th to 14th of October. Yesterday, the first two teams arrived and they joined with their local student guides. All the participants are welcome to Sri Lanka.
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The XXIII International Astronomy Olympiad (IAO) press conference was held at the chambers of Sri Lanka Association for the Advancement of Science on 2nd October 2018. The aim was to brief on the 23rd International Astronomy Olympiad which is to be held from 6th to 15th of October 2018 in Colombo.
Prof. Chandana Jayaratne the Chair of International Astronomy Olympiad Local Organizing Committee expressed on the on the nature of the program and its expectations on science. Dr. Michael Gavrilov the Chairman of the International Astronomy Olympiad who is now in Sri Lanka to direct the competition aired his views over the aims and history of the International Astronomy Olympiad.
Dr. Chinthaka De Silva the Secretary of the International Astronomy Olympiad local Organizing committee explained its significance over Sri Lanka and the benefits possessed as the hosting country while Mr. Isuru Gunawardhana the coordinator too explained on the activities of the program. Reporters from Derana TV, Hiru TV, Siyatha TV, ITN, FOS Media as well as Leading newspaper representatives were providing the media coverage and the members of the IAO Local organizing committee along with Dr. Hiran Jayaweera and Treasurer Mr. Rushan Abeygunawardana were also present at the press conference.
On 18/04/2018 A special meeting was held with Minister Dr. Sarath Amunugama at the ministry of special assignments. Prof Chandana Jayaratne, Chair of IAO-LOC, Mr. HMPB Herth, Additional Secretary to the Ministry of Science, Technology and Research along with Mr. Dharmathilaka, Director, Ministry of Science Technology and Research also participated for the meeting and This event was reported by the national newspapers-Daily News, Dinamina and Thinukaran in all the three languages(English, Sinhala and Tamil Language) on 18/04/201