CHARLES ROBERT DARWIN
12 February 1809 - 19 April 1882
"There is grandeur in this view of life, with its several powers, having been originally breathed into a few forms or into one; and that, whilst this planet has gone cycling on according to the fixed law of gravity, from so simple a beginning endless forms most beautiful and most wonderful have been, and are being, evolved."
The Origin of Species, 1859
The birthday of Charles Darwin is becoming an important date on the world calendar. Thanks to the initiatives shown by the folk at DarwinDay participants in many nations are contributing to a better understanding of the tremendous contribution made by Charles Darwin to our understanding of the natural world.
A group, Darwinists Down Under, representing the Gold Coast Skeptics and the Humanist Society of Queensland, has been formed to celebrate Darwin's birthday.
On the morning of Wednesday 12 February 2003 at approximately 10am Queensland time, a single engine aircraft will take-off from Murwillumbah airstrip towing a banner. As the aircraft gathers height and speed the banner will unfurl to reveal the message:
HAPPY BIRTHDAY DARWIN EVOLUTION RULES
The aircraft will fly east to the coast, then turn north travelling along the coast to Paradise Point, returning to Murwillumbah flying in a corridor bounded by the Gold Coast Highway and the Expressway. The aircraft will be in the air for two hours. A diversion to the route will occur when the aircraft performs a fly-over in the sky above the small primary school at Ingleside (inland from Burleigh Heads).
At the time of the fly-over a local resident and parent Brad Solomon will present the children of the Ingleside School with a set of books on science. The books are a Darwin's Day gift presentation from The Humanist Society of Queensland.
The initiative is part of a worldwide birthday celebration drawing attention to the outstanding intellectual achievement of Charles Darwin in providing a factual account of how life on planet Earth evolved.
The Gold Coast celebration has been organised by the Darwinists Down Under, the group members are from the ranks of the Gold Coast Skeptics and the Humanist Society of Qld.
Gold Coast Darwin Day co-ordinator John Stear, (07) 5577 4784
Flight co-ordinator John Edge, (07) 5536 6502
INTERNET SITE: www.darwinday.org
The banner following the flyover
Long Term Plans
Darwinists Down Under will be working toward a comprehensive celebration of Darwin's birthday in 2004 and each year thereafter with a special emphasis on the bicentennial celebrations in 2009.
No firm arrangements have been made but it is envisaged that the celebrations will be such that school children will be the main focus. It is intended that the co-operation of local school authorities be sought in order that comprehensive programs be put in place. Notable scientists will be approached to address various aspects of evolution.
Discussion groups will be formed to discuss evolution and an essay, etc., competition will be arranged among students. There will be a BBQ, sausage sizzle, picnic, etc., with a particular emphasis on family participation.
We will be encouraging individuals and groups to donate relevant literature to schools.
As plans are consolidated this page will be updated.
Some other links
Celebrating Darwin's Birthday