Partly cloudy skies with hazy clouds greeted 25 visitors, including 18 youth and 7 counsellors, from the Indigenous Services Mini-University Camp at Western University to the Cronyn Observatory, Friday, August 1st, 2014: 8:30 p.m. Graduate student Shannon Hicks began with a short digital slide presentation “Solar Activity & Solar Weather” followed by the digital slide presentation “Stellar Winds”.
RASC London Centre was represented by Bob Duff, Everett Clark and Peter Jedicke. Shannon already had the big 25.4cm refractor (32mm Erfle eyepiece, 137X) in the dome directed towards the 2-day-prior-to First Quarter crescent Moon in the south-western sky when Bob arrived before 8:30 p.m. Everett arrived around 8:45 p.m. and swapped in the 18mm Radian eyepiece (244X)—which Bob handed him with the 1-1/4-inch adapter—for a better view of the Moon in the big 25.4cm refractor. Bob set up the London Centre’s 25.4cm Dobsonian (17mm Nagler eyepiece, 66X) on the roof patio, directing it towards the wind turbine on the Engineering building. Peter was there shortly thereafter.
When everybody arrived upstairs in the dome after Shannon’s slide presentations, Bob gave a talk about the history and technical aspects of the big 25.4cm refractor and explained the Standard and Sidereal Time clocks on the east wall. The visitors soon lined up to view the Moon, Spica, Mars and Saturn through the big 25.4cm refractor (244X), which were pleasing sights despite frequent obscuration by clouds.
On the roof patio Bob briefly explained the 25.4cm Dobsonian reflector and showed the visitors the wind turbine on the Engineering building and then Saturn, using the 17mm Nagler (66X). He then swapped in the 6mm Ortho eyepiece (186X) for a better view of Saturn in the 25.4cm Dobsonian before showing them Arcturus (17mm Nagler eyepiece, 66X) and Saturn once again (6mm Ortho eyepiece, 186X).
The visitors left by around 10:15 p.m. after expressing their appreciation and thanks for a very informative and enjoyable evening of astronomy.