Exploring the Stars, Northdale Central Public School (Dorchester) January 16, 2014

Graduate student Dilini Subasinghe made the digital slide presentation “Our Solar System” before 58 visitors, including 33 children and 25 adults (not including 1 infant), from the Northdale Central Public School (Dorchester) Grade-6 class for Exploring the Stars at the Cronyn Observatory, Thursday, January 16th, 2014, 7:00 p.m. Dilini occasionally asked questions of the class during her presentation and answered questions afterwards.

RASC London Centre was represented by Everett Clark and Bob Duff. Everett selected 35 “Star Finder” planispheres for the evening from the 54 in the drawer of the sky chart display table in the dome. Following her slide presentation Dilini distributed the planispheres and Scotch tape was passed around after she had explained how to assemble and use them.

Everybody came upstairs into the dome around 8:00 p.m. Since snow flurries had ruled out opening the dome, Bob gave a talk at some length about the history and technical aspects of the big 25.4cm refractor and explained the Standard and Sidereal Time clocks on the east wall. He turned on the telescope motor drive, explaining how it tracked stars.

Everett had set up the London Centre’s 25.4cm Dobsonian (17mm Nagler eyepiece, 66X) inside the door to the roof patio and Bob supervised as the visitors lined up to view the weathervane on the Engineering building. Everett and Bob talked the teacher about contacting the RASC London Centre for a school star night, possibly in May. The visitors were gone by 8:35 p.m. after a very enjoyable evening learning about astronomy.