Exploring the Stars, 1st Ailsa Craig Guides, Pathfinders & Scouts, April 15th, 2015

Generally clear skies with a few clouds greeted 31 visitors (19 children and 12 adults) from the 1st Ailsa Craig Guides, Pathfinders & Scouts for Exploring the Stars at Western University’s Cronyn Observatory, Wednesday, April 15th, 2015, 7:00 p.m.  Graduate student Tony Martinez made the digital slide presentation “The Scout / Guide Astronomy Badge” and fielded questions.  Tony followed this with the activity “Kitchen Comet”, making a comet from dry ice and other materials on a table set up at the front of the lecture room.

RASC London Centre was represented by Tricia Colvin, later joined by Bob Duff.  Tricia arrived early, setting up the 25.4cm Dobsonian (17mm Nagler eyepiece, 66X) on the roof patio outside the dome and finding Jupiter in the still bright daylight sky.  She also opened the dome and made ready the big 25.4cm refractor.  When everybody arrived upstairs in the dome Bob gave a talk about the history of the Cronyn Observatory and technical aspects of the big 25.4cm refractor and explained the Standard and Sidereal Time clocks on the east wall.  Bob then directed the big 25.4cm refractor and showed them Venus (32mm Erfle eyepiece, 137X) and Jupiter (28mm Meade Super Wide Angle eyepiece (157X).

Tricia showed the visitors Jupiter, the stars Betelgeuse and Sirius, the Orion Nebula (M42) and the stars Mizar and Alcor through the 25.4cm Dobsonian (17mm Nagler eyepiece, 66X).  The visitors were gone by around 9:45 p.m. after a very interesting and enjoyable evening of astronomy.