President’s Annual Message

By Greg Barker

That’s a wrap on the most active year for public outreach since before the pandemic.

We had most of our Silver Sands / Young’s Park events with only a couple being washed out. The private events were a big hit too, with one of the largest crowds at the Hammonasset event with over 300+ attending. 

We had the first summer solstice picnic in a couple of years with more members attending than in past years. Our winter solstice Zoom quiz by Al Washburn was a big hit as always. We also mourn the passing of our beloved friends, mentors, club officers in Alan Sacharow, Tony Melillo, Harriet Katz, and Bob Carruthers. 

In 2023 weather permitting, we’ll have more private and public events, solstice picnic and winter party. 

I wish everyone clear skies, a safe and prosperous new year.

Fall 2022 ASNH Outreach Events

By Donna Pursley

Madison Moonlight Walk, October 9

This is the best event that we have each year. We set up on the oceanside patio of the Surf Club. The main event is a moonlit walk with a bagpiper leading the way followed by apple cider and refreshments. Then many of the walkers come out to view the Moon, planets and stars through our scopes. There is a quick crowd and then it is all over. Many people have never seen the full Moon through a telescope and are amazed by how much detail they can see. As always, we had a large interested intelligent crowd.

Girl Scout Planet Walk, October 14

Laurie and Cheryl set up a planet walk for the Girl Scout troop in Milford. A planet walk is a scaled down model of the solar system to show the distance between the planets of our solar system. At the sun and each planet, they stop and discussed the size and features of that object. It is a fun learning tool. After their walk, we had telescopes set up to show them some of the planets that they just learned about. The girl scouts and their parents all had a good time.

Silver Sands Public Star Gazing, October 21

We had our public star gazing at Silver Sands on Friday October 21st. I think there might have been more scopes than members of the public. The skies were clear but there was a slight haze. The larger scopes were able to see Uranus which was quite a feat. It is nice to get together with other members to chat about our common interests.

Young’s Park Public Star gazing, October 22

It was a beautiful cloudless day but high clouds started rolling in late in the afternoon. The decision was made to cancel the event based on the clear sky clocks saying it was only going to get cloudier and the fact that we saw clouds moving in.

Mike Zarick and I went to Young’s Park just in case some people showed up. When we got there, we could see Jupiter and Cassiopeia. We set up my 6” scope on the tailgate of the truck to see Jupiter. We were going to leave by 7:15 if no one showed up. At 7:10 a young boy and his mother stopped by so we set up the scope on the table and showed them Jupiter, Saturn, the ET cluster and Vega. He was very excited to look through a telescope. As it turns out, they live right around the corner from us and we told them that they could borrow a telescope from the North Branford library. An older couple and another boy celebrating his 10th birthday who was out with his aunt and uncle stopped by. We showed them the same items as that was all we could see with the clouds. Then a group of four teenagers showed up and were very excited to look through the scope and see the planets. There was nothing left to see as the clouds covered almost the entire sky and we left at 8:15. We handed out business cards with our website address and told everyone about our next events for the year.

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