Last 2 star parties until September

The Star Party team: Don Cain, Dan Williams, Sam Sollenberger, Richard Spitzer, Sam Miller and Ken Lund

The Star Party team: Don Cain, Dan Williams, Sam Sollenberger, Richard Spitzer, Sam Miller and Ken Lund

Rita Fletcher

May 17, Wednesday and June 15, Thursday, from 8:00 to 10:00 p.m. are the last two star parties until September due to monsoon season; come enjoy the warm evening, ask tons of questions and see spectacular stellar scenes for free at the softball field parking lot, adjacent to the dog park, just past DesertView Theater. Please arrive and leave with parking lights to accommodate those using telescopes. Cancellations due to weather will be posted on our website: Or call Richard at 520-603-0940.

The gentlemen in the above picture, left to right: Don Cain, Dan Williams, Sam Sollenberger, Richard Spitzer, Sam Miller and Ken Lund. Don has a computer controlled telescope of 8 and 11 inch apertures. He has taken astronomy courses at University of Arizona, Pima College and the Tucson Amateur Astronomy Association. He has volunteered his scopes at many local school star parties, the annual Grand Canyon Star Party and events at Oracle and Catalina State Parks and Biosphere2. Sam S. says, “When I moved to Arizona, I felt it was a waste of a natural resource if you didn’t take advantage of the relatively clear skies we enjoy here.” His initial encounter was looking up through the canopy while flying very high on clear nights during his Air Force career. The local equipment shop in Tucson, Starizona, produced equipment for astrophotography as well as his current telescope. Telescopes “reach unimaginable distances—millions and billions of light years away.” Richard taught high school astronomy for 10 years. He participated in several National Science Foundation astronomy projects at Kitt Peak and the University of Arizona. He has an 8-inch GoTo telescope. Ken is the co-founder and former President of the Des Moines Iowa Astronomical Society. He has taught The Joy of Astronomy for SaddleBrooke’s Learning in Retirement since 2009. He is one of the founding members of SaddleBrooke SkyGazers. Ken is heading to Nebraska in August for the total eclipse of the sun.

May’s star party will show off the planet Jupiter. Jupiter and four of her moons will be visible at the start of the star party and all evening long. There will also be globular clusters such as M13 in Hercules, open star clusters, galaxies and double stars. June will have two planets to observe – Jupiter and Saturn. Saturn will be visible about 9:00 p.m. rising above the Catalinas and Jupiter will be high in the sky. Different globular clusters, open star clusters, colorful double stars, galaxies and the Ring Nebula in Lyra will be possible to see as well! A star-studded evening not to be missed!

Please consider joining SkyGazers Astronomy Club for an annual $10 fee to support our efforts to encourage the joy of astronomy by bringing it down to earth, to you here in SaddleBrooke. Call Sam Miller (520-468-2525) or email [email protected] for more information or simply write a check to SkyGazers and mail to Sam Miller 62930 E. Silkwood Way, Tucson, Arizona 85739.

Thank you!