Spirit of Yuri’s Night Award

The Spirit of Yuri’s Night Award is the highest honor that can be given by the Yuri’s Night Board of Directors. Awarded once each year, the Spirit of Yuri’s Night Award recognizes “a person or persons that embody the Yuri’s Night mission by using space and art to contribute to the future of humanity, both in space and on Earth.”

Each of the first eight Spirit of Yuri’s Night Awards was uniquely designed and handcrafted from aerogels and other high-quality materials. Aerogels are a diverse class of ultralow density solids with properties unlike anything else. From superinsulation and supercapacitors to ultralight structures, sensors, and armor, aerogels make possible technologies that make our world better. Aerogel disks were used in the NASA Stardust mission to capture samples of cometary dust and return it to Earth for analysis! Yuri’s Night thanks Aerogel Technologies, LLC and BuyAerogel.com for their generous support of the Spirit of Yuri’s Night Award.

Starting in 2019, the Spirit of Yuri’s Night Award has been a stunning model of the Earth that gently spins generously provided by MOVA Globes.

Elon Musk and SpaceX
In recognition of their work to inspire the world by putting a Tesla Roadster into space—and streaming live video of our planet!—using a test launch of the Falcon Heavy rocket.
Anousheh Ansari
Anousheh Ansari and Loretta Whitesides Spirit of Yuris Night Award
In recognition of her work to enable social entrepreneurs to bring about radical change globally, with organizations such as X Prize, ASHOKA and the PARSA Community Foundation. She believes the key to a better future for humankind is in the hands of our young generation, and it is up to us to provide them with the right tools through education and as good role models. Through it all, Anousheh continues to quote Gandhi, one of her personal heroes, who said, “Be the change you want to see in the world.”
Sascha Paladino
Sasha Paladino Spirit of Yuris Night Award
In recognition of his efforts to share the spirit of Yuri’s Night with a new generation as producer of the Disney Jr. show “Miles from Tomorrowland”.
Dr. Alan Stern
In recognition of his hugely successful outreach efforts around the New Horizons mission and his ongoing support of Yuri’s Night.
Read the announcement.
Bill Nye and the Planetary Society
Bill Nye Spirit of Yuris Night Award
In recognition of their decades-long commitment to using science and art to engage and inspire generations to--dare we say it?--change the world! Read the announcement
Dr. Pete Worden
Pete Worden Celestine Starr at Yuri's Night Bay Area 2007
In reconition of his support of innovative public outreach including Yuri’s Night Bay Area events. Read the announcement.
Ron Garan

In recognition of his insights on the Orbital Perspective and hosting the first major Yuri's Night party on the International Space Station!
Read the announcement.

Richard Garriott
Richard Garriott Spirit of Yuris Night Award

In recognition of his unique efforts to share the wonder of space, using his personal trip to space to conduct scientific research, and conducting various art endeavors in space.

Read the announcement

Dancing Snoopy Medal

The Yuri’s Night Board of Directors also periodically awards the “Dancing Snoopy Medal”, a medallion recognizing exemplary effort by Yuri’s Night Executive Team members, event organizers, and other volunteers. The Dancing Snoopy Medal was inspired by the Silver Snoopy Award, given by NASA astronauts to individuals for outstanding achievements. Yuri’s Night thanks United Media, Universal Uclick, and Peanuts Worldwide, LLC, for their generous permission to use the Astronaut Snoopy design in this limited fashion.