Category Archives: Star Parties

Bob Piekiel Hosts At Green Lakes State Park – July 26 And August 23

Greetings, fellow astrophiles!

Bob Piekiel setting up and aligning at Green Lakes waaaaay back on 25 July 2014.

I’m pleased to report that CNY’s longest-running star party and observing host Bob Piekiel has two new additions to his 2019 observing schedule – and you’ll need to plan accordingly, as the first is coming up this Friday!

Sessions And Details

Fridays – July 26th and August 23rd. Directions to Green Lakes can be made from the link below:


Both sessions run from 8:00 – 10:30 (p.m.) and there are no scheduled Saturday evening weather-alternates. To double-check on the event the evening of, call Green Lakes at: (315) 637-6111.

Event Announcement: Maine Astronomy Retreat 2019

Greetings, fellow astrophiles!

As you start making your 2019 star party list, consider the following – just in the inbox from the Maine Astronomy Retreat.

We are reaching out to share with you information about the Maine Astronomy Retreat at Medomak Retreat Center in Washington, Maine – a vacation for you and your telescope!

Washington, Maine has some of the darkest skies in the Northeast, with a limiting visual magnitude of 6.3 (SQM value: 21.3 MPSAS). This summer, July 28th- August 3rd, we are hosting our sixth annual Maine Astronomy Retreat. For six nights you will be able to revel under our expansive dark skies – we will have telescopes on hand and we encourage you to bring yours, too. During the day, in addition to engaging lectures and programs by our expert facilitators, our facility is at your disposal. Enjoy our quiet waterfront equipped with canoes and kayaks, play tennis and basketball on our courts, or take a scenic drive and explore the beautiful coastal towns of mid-coast Maine.

The retreat is led by J. Kelly Beatty, Sky & Telescope’s senior editor, and Bruce Berger, director of Amateur Telescope Makers of Boston Research and Imaging Observatory.

Our special guests will be Dava Sobel, former New York Times science journalist and author of Longitude, Galileo’s Daughter, and the recently published book The Glass Universe, and Babak Tafreshi, founder of The World at Night, and nightscape photographer for the National Geographic image collection.

For this star party there’s no need to bring a tent, sleep in a sleeping bag, or eat uninspired food. Medomak has comfortable, private cabins with real beds, hot showers, and electricity, as well as delicious, locally-sourced meals prepared on the premises. And it’s all included in your tuition. Limited to 40 participants.

We would love it if you would pass on this information to your group members or include it in your newsletter and calendar of events. Also, please be sure to stop by our booth at NEAF to learn more, or just for a nice “hello.”

More details and the ability to register can be found here: http://www.astronomyretreat.com

Questions? Would you like to speak with a live human? Please feel free to give us a call at 1-866-MEDOMAK.

Thank you so much for your time and consideration.

Best regards,
David Brunner
Director, Medomak
Summer Camp for Families & Retreat Center for Adults
www.astronomyretreat.com

Winter September-May
12230 Clarksville Pike, Suite C
Clarksville, MD 21029
(301) 854-9100

Summer June-August
178 Liberty Rd.
Washington, ME 04574
(207) 845-6001

2016 U.S. Star Parties And Astro Events Calendar – Still Remembering Barlow Bob (By Helping Keep The Community Connected)

Greetings fellow astrophiles,

www.cnyo.org/2016-u-s-star-parties-and-astro-events/

I wanted to get this post out before the year gets any further (not farther) along. I am pleased to announce that the 2016 edition of U.S. Star Parties And Astro Events calendar is available on the CNYO website for your star party planning pleasure (and/or download). This is an as-complete-as-google-and-email-will-allow list of all of the star parties happening in the U.S. for the year (complete as of this posting, so check back to the main page often), including all of the events that were announced in 2015 but that haven’t had 2016 dates announced yet (and we’re keeping track of those links as well).

2016feb2_Barlow-Bob-FullThis list, now maintained by Chuck Higgins of Mohawk Valley Astronomical Society and myself and is a continuation of the same original star party list compiled by the late-great Barlow Bob (shown at-play at right, who co-managed it with Chuck Higgins starting a few years back and before BB’s passing in 2014. For those who don’t know about Barlow Bob, his contribution to NEAF in the form of the NEAF Solar Star Party (Astronomy Technology Today article downloaded from www.asgh.org), or his own solar astronomy outreach, please check out THIS LINK on the CNYO website. The image above comes from a nice remembrance at Stargeezer Radio).

You can always find the page by hovering over the CALENDAR link the top menu list on the CNYO website. The excel file and list will be updated as we find new info for new events. If you want to add events to this list, please do so (contact Damian at info@cnyo.org, or use our CONTACT page)! We are also awaiting corrections, comments, new links, additional announcements, etc., from current items on the list – specifically the blue items at the bottom of the page.

And What Is This Star Party Of Which You Speak?

2016feb2_TexasSta-Party2009_341Very briefly – a chance for you to join many other enthusiastic amateur astronomers for a night of group star gazing, comparing eyepieces, assorted discussions, wandering around to see the variety of scopes in the community, and generally having a great time spending as much of the night as you can looking up. You should try to take in at least one each year!

And might one of the events on this list be your first Star Party? Have you been kicked out of one lately and don’t know why? Do you want to NOT face the wrath of several hundred dark-adapted, caffeine-crazed astronomers in a single flicker of a flashlight? The I strongly encourage you to take a look at a few of the links below – which all cover proper Star Party Etiquette. As you will see, all the links basically say the same thing. With that kind of a consensus view, you know that we fellow attendees mean business. If you need more reading, just google star party guide. Attendees have a lot to say!

* www.astrohbg.org/CSSP/images/CSSP_Images/PDF/StarPartyEtiquette.pdf
* www.astro-tom.com/tips_and_advice/star_party_tips.htm
* www.company7.com/library/starpty.html
* www.astromax.org/faq/aa01faq16.htm
* bfsp.org/rules-and-faq/

I hope to see your dark, featureless outline at at least one of the events on the list. If you find one happening right in your own vicinity that you didn’t even know existed, thank Barlow Bob.

Maine Astronomy Retreat – Email Announcement And Update From The Organizers

Greetings, fellow astrophiles!

The following email came across the internets yesterday announcing updates to the Maine Astronomy Retreat, yet another excellent Star Party placed reasonably close to Central New York. For those interested, check out the email and embedded links for more information.

We are reaching out to inform you of an update about the Maine Astronomy Retreat at Medomak Retreat Center in Washington, Maine – a vacation for you and your telescope!

2015july16_Ringler1

We are pleased to announce that Babak A. Tafreshi has been added to our team of instructors. Tafreshi is the founder of The World at Night or TWAN program and a photographer for the National Geographic image collection, specialized in nightscape imaging, connecting the Earth and sky, bridging art and science. He is also a science journalist and astronomy communicator. He is a board member of Astronomers without Borders and a contributing photographer for Sky & Telescope. You can explore his photography in the links listed below:

* Personal website: http://dreamview.net
* The World at Night: http://twanight.org/tafreshi
* National Geographic: http://natgeocreative.com/photography/tafreshi
* Timelapse Motions: https://vimeo.com/btafreshi/videos

We would love if you would pass on this information to your group members or include it in your newsletter and calendar of events.

Please see our website, http://www.astronomyretreat.com, for more details, and to register. If you have any questions, please feel free to give us a call at 1-866-MEDOMAK.

Thank you so much for your time and consideration.

David Brunner
Director, Medomak
Summer Camp for Families & Retreat Center for Adults
www.medomakcamp.com
www.medomakretreatcenter.com

U.S. Star Parties And Astro Events Calendar For 2015 – Continuing A Great Idea

Greetings fellow astrophiles,

For several years, those in the Barlow Bob email loop were treated to a Word doc containing a list of East Coast Star Parties, complete with web links and locations “Courtesy Barlow Bob and Friends.” Starting two years ago, this event list was compiled by Barlow Bob and Chuck Higgins of the Mohawk Valley Astronomical Society. For my part, this list served two great purposes. First, it allowed me to keep track of (and pass along) astro events not too far from Central New York (many an easy drive for overnight stays). Second, it was a great way to see how other clubs had their websites arranged (which was great for stealing ideas and widgets – it’s a large enough community where you can see what seems to work and not work with only a few hours of snooping around!).

2014june20_barlowbob_5_small

Barlow Bob at the center of the 2014 NEAF Solar Star Party.

As a way to continue Barlow Bob’s tradition of outreach beyond his own solar observing sessions (I often called him the “Postman of Amateur Astronomy” for the number of emails he would forward along), I am pleased to report that the compilation of 2015 Star Parties has been completed (and we’ve only missed a few events already) by Chuck Higgins and myself. The link can be found when you hover over the “Calendar” link above and an official page has been setup on the CNYO website, complete with PDF, DOCX, and HTML versions (the HTML case so you can copy + paste the table into your own pages if you like).

2015 U.S. Star Parties And Astro Events

PDF VersionWord DOCX VersionTable’d HTML Version

(www.cnyo.org/2015-u-s-star-parties-and-astro-events/)

The list is, as of 6 April 2015, as accurate as our web searches and other organizations’ websites has allowed – but we expect a few changes to appear as situations require and as some organizations announce their official dates. We’ll keep the official page here updated accordingly.

In the meantime, I see this list and can only remark on how many clubs we have in the US full of members who enjoy and appreciate the Night Sky. As you’ll see checking out event info pages, these Star Parties are usually wide open to the public as well. As someone who’s organized such events, I can say with certainly that it is no trivial matter to arrange all of the details for a successful Star Party. That is to say, the hosts for these events really want *you* to enjoy and appreciate the Night Sky as well.

If you see a problem, want to add an event, or have any other comment about the page, please drop a line to info@cnyo.org and Chuck and I will reply accordingly. Otherwise, get yourself outside a few times this year!