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Baylor Regional Park
April 16, 2013
Saturday April 20, 2013
Onan Observatory at Baylor Regional Park
10775 County Rd 33, Norwood Young America, MN
The Minnesota Astronomical Society would like to invite you to attend the Astronomical League’s
Astronomy Day activities at the Onan Observatory in Baylor Regional Park. Speakers are scheduled
throughout the day and will give talks on astronomy and what there is to see. Door prize drawings will
be held Saturday evening and include MAS merchandise, astronomy books and telescopes. Weather
permitting, the evening will conclude with tours of the night sky and of course stargazing.
Schedule of Events|
Saturday April 20, 2013|
12:00 Noon: Daytime Activities beginning at noon
Solar observation, daytime viewing of the Moon, Venus and Jupiter.
|2:00 ||Bill Arden - The Sun (the star we live with) - Astronomers look at stars, and we've got one right down the block. We'll take a closer look at the star we live by - the Sun. We'll see its place in the Solar System, how it compares to other stars, ways to watch it and some things to look for through the observatory's telescopes.
|3:00 ||Michael Kauper – Planisphere demonstration - Make your own ''Star Wheel'' and learn how to use it to find your way through the night sky.
|4:00 ||Bob Kerr - "Things That Go Flash in the Night: All About Meteors." - Every year our planet is bombarded by thousands of meteors or “shooting stars.” These space rocks can originate close-by, as well as from the farthest reaches of the solar system. Some arrivals are anticipated while others startle us. They come singly or in showers. Join us and hold a four billion year old meteorite in your hand!
|5:00 ||To be determined -
|6:00 ||Dinner Break
|7:30 ||Ron Schmit: Robots in Space - Though you would not mistake them for R2 or C3PO, they ARE robots: our intrepid space probes. Setting sail from Earth, this fleet of automatons continues to explore the far reaches of our solar system, sending back never before seen images from the unique vantage point that they provide. We've had robots visit every planet of the solar, and we even have one on the way for a historic visit to the dwarf planet, Pluto. Get the latest on our robotic reconnaissance of the solar system. There is so much to explore!!
|8:30 ||Door Prize Drawings
|9:00 ||Ron Schmit: LIVE Constellation Tour
The evening will continue with viewing through our array of telescopes. Venus, Jupiter, the Moon and Saturn will top the list of astronomical delights.
The MAS's Onan Observatory, the region's premier all-volunteer public observing facility.
- More than a dozen telescopes to view through, are among the finest amateur telescopes available.
- Real-time video viewing capabilities for lunar, planetary and deep-sky viewing.
- Solar filters allow safe viewing of the Sun's surface, sunspots and solar prominences.
- Mounted 15x80 binoculars for the ultimate “wide-field” stargazing experience.
- A heated warming room to take the chill out of the cool spring nights.
- Electrical outlets on the outside of the building for those who bring their own scopes.
- Paved handicap parking adjacent to the wheelchair accessible observatory.
Baylor Regional Park is roughly 25 miles southwest of the Eden Prairie, MN and just north of Norwood-Young America. It is easily reached either by Minnesota Highway 5 or U.S. Highway 212. Select the "Directions" link in the left hand column or click HERE for interactive map.
The theme of Astronomy Day is “Bringing Astronomy to the People”. This worldwide event invites
astronomical societies, planetariums, museums, and observatories to sponsor public viewing
sessions, presentations, workshops, and other activities to increase public awareness about
astronomy and our wonderful universe.
Astronomy Day was born in California in 1973. Doug Berger, then president of the Astronomical
Association of Northern California, decided that rather than try to entice people to travel long
distances to visit observatory open houses, they would set up telescopes closer to where the people
were - busy locations - urban locations like street corners, shopping malls, parks, etc.
His strategy paid off. Not only did Astronomy Day go over with a bang, not only did the public find out
about the astronomy club, they found out about future observatory open houses. Since the public got
a chance to look through a portable telescope, they were hooked. They then wanted to see what went
on at the bigger telescopes, so they turned out in droves at the next observatory open house.