Camp Timken Star Party, June 22nd—24th, 2012

Rick Saunders reported a successful star party at Camp Timken with the Klassens, the Johnsons, Pete and Cheri Raine, Mike Roffey and Rick bringing tents and other accommodations. Matt Neima, Dan Tremblay and Harold Tutt didn’t camp but were there. Rick delivered 2 slide presentations to some 42 Scouts and adults, including one presentation, “Our Universe” for the Beavers and one for the Cubs, who were working on their Astronomy Badge. All had the opportunity to view the Sun through the 60mm Coronado H-Alpha solar telescope Saturday morning and afternoon. Evening observing began with a nice crescent Moon, Saturn, Mars and some deep-sky objects. Rick worked with the Cubs, using his green laser pointer on the constellations.

Rick brought his 8-inch (20.3cm) AstroTech F/4 Astrograph and the London Centre’s 60mm Coronado H-Alpha solar telescope. Pete Raine showed some people Saturn through his GEM mounted 10-inch (25.4cm) Newtonian reflector. Pete also helped direct the Cubs, Scouts, leaders and parents as they looked through the London Centre’s 60mm Coronado PST H-Alpha solar telescope, while Rick Saunders was giving his slide presentations Saturday afternoon. Matt Neima brought his 25.4cm Dobsonian and showed the Moon, Saturn and M13 to the Scouts. Dan Tremblay brought his 12.5-inch (32cm) Truss-Tube Dobsonian and showed them the Moon, Antares, Mars and Saturn. Mike Roffey brought his 12.5-inch (32cm) Sky-Watcher Truss-Tube Dobsonian and showed the Scouts, leaders and parents Saturn and M13. Tyrone Klassen and his wife brought their 120mm Sky-Watcher refractor with them in a Kendrick Astro tent. Rob Johnson set up a 5-inch (127mm) Meade refractor on a GEM mount.

The barbeque on Saturday was great with burgers, sausages and hot dogs off the grill, two salads, coffee and juice. Cakes decorated with “Star Party 2012” made up dessert. A 10 p.m. mug up of coffee, hot chocolate and cookies was delayed a few minutes for an almost directly overhead ISS pass at 9:56 p.m.

An added bonus was that the campsite’s hot shower system was running for those wanting a hot shower. Financially, costs might just break even for this camping weekend and the consensus was to have the event again next year.

Bob Duff
Higher Education Liaison
RASC London Centre