May 29, 2020

07.05.11: Its International Astronomy Day!

Coming under a sky near you… (Photo by Author).

Batten down the scopes…today is a day when we celebrate all things astronomical. This year, International Astronomy Day as reckoned by the Astronomical League falls on May 7th and October 1st. This weekend is a good time to visit that local astronomy club or planetarium and see what’s happening in the night sky… and if they’re not planning an event, ask em’ why not? Or better yet, start your own impromptu neighborhood star party… just plop your scope down in the driveway, perhaps send out a tweet or three, and I guarantee curious folks will come up. This weekend we have a gorgeous Saturn, waxing crescent Moon and a plethora of deep sky objects just awaiting first time viewers. And equal shame to those of you who have never invited the neighbors to view through that backyard monstrosity that you took out a second mortgage to build; now’s the time to rectify that, before the Ghost of Astronomy Days’ Past pays you a visit. So many folks have never looked through a telescope, and a visit might make your appeal for them to turn down their backyard floodlights ring true.

And me? I’ll be parking my trusty 8” Schmidt Cassegrain ‘scope under dark skies Saturday night at Starkey Park in New Port Richey, Florida as a bunch of us do every month for the public… stop by, take a look, talk to us about supernovae, zodiac constellations, aliens, alternate theories of cosmology, “why ain’t Pluto a planet?” whatever. We’ve heard it all. Still, you’re welcome to impress us, and wether you believe its “turtles all the way down” or not, we can all enjoy that greatest show of all, the night sky!

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