Mostly cloudy skies and damp weather greeted some 24 visitors to Western University’s Cronyn Observatory Public Night, Monday, January 25th, 2016, 7:00 p.m. They were welcomed by graduate student Kendra Kellogg and, since there was no slide presentation that evening, were directed upstairs into the dome.
RASC London Centre was represented by Paul Kerans, Steve Gauthier, Everett Clark, Bob Duff and Peter Jedicke. Graduate student Shannon Hicks was telescope operator for the evening and directed the big 25.4cm refractor (32mm Erfle eyepiece, 137X) in the dome to show visitors a flashing red light on communications tower in south London.
Bob talked to some of the visitors and spent part of the evening showing a few people the wind turbine on the Engineering building through the London Centre’s 25.4cm Dobsonian (17mm Nagler eyepiece, 66X), which had been set up on the roof patio outside the dome. Paul set up his Nikon 10 X 50mm binoculars on his Orion Parallelogram Mount and tripod on the roof patio to show visitors views of the Western Sports and Recreation Centre.
Steve showed visitors the astronomy software programs on the dome computer including Starry Night Pro, Celestia and Stellarium. Everett distributed 2 “Star Finder” planispheres and 2 “Moon Gazers’ Guide” cards to interested visitors. The visitors were gone by around 8:40 p.m. and the observatory was closed down after an enjoyable evening learning about astronomy, despite the cloudy, damp weather.