Star Night, Fingal Wildlife Management Area, May 5th, 2014

Partly cloudy skies greeted 47 visitors from the home school group Kids Learning Connection of London to the RASC London Centre’s Fingal Wildlife Management Area Dark Sky Observing Site, Monday, May 5th, 2014. RASC London Centre Public Outreach Coordinator and Past President Dave McCarter began the event around 7:00 p.m. with an orientation talk. This was followed by observing the late afternoon Sun through the London Centre’s 60mm Coronado H-Alpha Solar Telescope and Dave’s 80mm Stellarvue refractor fitted with a white-light filter.

This was followed by viewing the one-day-prior-to-First Quarter Moon through a variety of telescopes including Dale Armstrong’s 25.4cm Newtonian, Dave McCarter’s 25.4cm Dobsonian, Gaetan Godin’s 20.3cm Dobsonian, Norm McCall’s 152mm Maksutov-Newtonian and Matt Neima’s 125mm Tasco 8V Catadioptric-Newtonian. Mike Roffey operated the London Centre’s 20.3cm Celestron NexStar 8SE Schmidt-Cassegrain. Trev McNaughton set up his small widefield camera with a 200mm lens and SkyTracker mount. Everett Clark opened up the 2 London Centre Observatories, with the 12-inch (30.5cm) f/8 Astro-Tech Ritchie-Chretien in OBS1 and the 14-inch (35.5cm) f/11 Celestron C14 Schmidt-Cassegrain in OBS2. There were in all 8 RASC London Centre members and 10 telescopes, including the 2 Observatory telescopes.

As the sky darkened people were able to view Jupiter, Mars and finally Saturn. Many older children were especially pleased to have stayed late enough to view the ringed planet Saturn.
The visitors were gone by the time Dave left the site around 11:00 p.m.