10/29/11 BSC star party Recap

Posted On October 31, 2011


I opened the gate at 5:30 pm and we only had a few cars waiting to go in even though the evening sky was clear. Hassi wondered why we had so few people come out but by the time darkness fell, a full parking lot. Just before the Sun went down, we could just make out dim Mercury above the hills a few degrees below bright Venus. A telescope view just showed the planets as small discs.


Then we got to see the 6:33 pm magnitude 1.8 HST pass but never could locate the 8:15 pm magnitude 2.7 HST pass. Lots of other satellites were seen throughout the evening.


Jupiter was up early and showed off its belts and moons to anyone pointing their scope that way. Day & her husband were able to see the Andromeda Galaxy through their binoculars for the first time after getting some assistance. Jonathan and Jennifer had their new 8″ Celestron busy finding Messier objects.


Hassi had a number of his students attend the star party and he ended up showing them every planet but Saturn & Mars along with many other interesting objects. David had his huge 13″ mirror Celestron set up and generously showed many of us all sorts of objects starting with M2 and then the Blue Snowball. Don had his 10″ Meade set up and showed us some nice views of several Messier objects.


I did locate asteroids Vesta and Ceres and then viewed M31 but never could find M32, M110 or M33 in my small 5″ Meade ETX125. Vittal had his 10″ DOBS busy as usual. Liam’s friend, Dr. George Smith enjoyed his first time at BSC as did Larry, both want to buy a telescope and got to look through all types of scopes. 


We had 24 cars come out and everyone seemed to have a good time. But it did get cold so everyone left by 10:30 pm when the temperature showed 45 F. I locked the gate about 10:45 and felt we had another successful near-town star party.