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Messages - Jonathan Sabin

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31
Just a brief word about tonight's (SATURDAY, FEBRUARY 16th) Sidewalk Astronomy at Riverview H.S.

It's a "go."

Expect overcast skies in the late afternoon to break up by 6ish.

We should have *mostly* clear skies until around 9, and from 9 to 10, we may get a bit of high, thin clouds moving in.

At least, that's the way I'm reading it!  ;-)

See you out there!


Jonathan

32
The interview went pretty well, I thought... and I got a full three minutes of air time! (Interesting side note: Einstein's time-dilation theory is at play, because when you're sitting there in the studio on-camera, it only takes about 10-15 seconds to get three minutes of video!)   ;-)

If you didn't happen to catch it, I've uploaded it here:
https://www.facebook.com/jonathan.sabin/posts/10155604372281627

33
In case anyone’s interested, I’ll be talking about this weekend’s Sidewalk Astronomy event with John Scalzi, on ABC7 Sarasota - WWSB for a couple of minutes during their noon broadcast on Thursday. (January 10th)

My understanding is that we’ll be live around 12:20 p.m.

34
Hi Randy,

As Ed mentioned, we welcome everyone with a scope and/or binoculars who's willing to set up for the public, as every additional piece of equipment out there makes it better for those in attendance. We usually get a minimum crowd of about 100--though we've had as many as 400-500 show up on some of our busiest nights. Needless to say, the more scopes we have...the better we can accommodate the crowd!

We look forward to seeing you out there... and brace yourself for handling all the "oohs" and "aahs!"


Jonathan

35
Our first public celestial event of 2019 takes place on January 12

We are pleased to announce that weather permitting, on Saturday, January 12, 2019 starting at 6:00 p.m., and continuing until at least 10:00 p.m., the members of the Local Group will set up high-quality telescopes for public viewing at the Robinson Preserve EXTENSION in Northwest Bradenton. This event is held in partnership with the Manatee County Parks and Natural Resources Department, as well as Robinson Preserve.

Our telescopes will be set up in the parking area accessed from Robinson Preserve's new 9th Avenue NW entrance (10299 9th Avenue NW in Bradenton), a location that enjoys an incredible wide expanse of the nighttime sky.

(The Preserve's main entrance at 17th Avenue will not be open or accessible during the evening.)


Observing highlights include the wintertime favorite, the Great Nebula in Orion, as well as the planets Mars, Uranus and Neptune. The first quarter moon and other deep-sky wonders will also be viewed through our telescopes.

As always, Sidewalk Astronomy is free of charge and is open to people of all ages.

36
WEATHER UPDATE FOR TONIGHT'S SIDEWALK ASTRONOMY AT THE CELERY FIELDS


Despite the fact that it's currently *completely* overcast, tonight's event is a GO!


With one caveat.


It appears that there's a good chance the clouds will start to break up between 6:30 and 7:30 p.m., so even though we scheduled this to start at 5:45, chances are we won't even have telescopes set up until an hour or so later---and that's assuming it shows evidence that the clearing is actually happening.

If it does clear, it looks like we may have some decent observing for a couple of hours--and you'll get a chance to see the comet 46/P Wirtanen, which is just one day away from its closest approach to the Earth!

37
The weather forecast for tonight's Sidewalk Astronomy at Riverview High looks good.

High, thin clouds possible during part of the evening, but otherwise clear.

The event is a "GO!"

(And if you do go, you probably want to bring a light jacket or sweatshirt. The forecast low will be near 60, so it's going to feel a little chilly out there!)



Details:

Saturday, September 17, 2018 
5:45 - 10:00 p.m.

Riverview High School
1 Ram Way
Sarasota, FL

MAP:  www.tinyurl.com/lgdsomap

38
The Local Group of Deep Sky Observers is pleased to announce their next Sidewalk Astronomy event.

Weather permitting, on Saturday, November 17, 2018 starting at 5:45 p.m., and continuing until at least 10:00 p.m., we will set up our high-quality telescopes for public viewing at Riverview High School.

Located at 1 Ram Way in Sarasota, (just off Proctor Road, 0.8 miles east of US 41), the telescopes will be set up on the sidewalk just outside of the school's Planetarium/Science Center.

<CLICK HERE FOR INTERACTIVE MAP> https://tinyurl.com/y7b8tvu7

This will be the FINAL opportunity (until next September) to observe the spectacular ringed planet Saturn. The planets Mars, Uranus, and Neptune will also be visible as will the waxing gibbous moon. Other deep-sky wonders may also be viewed through the member's telescopes.

As always, Sidewalk Astronomy is free of charge and is open to people of all ages.

39
 I don't normally get to call it a "go" 36 hours in advance, but the weather forecast for tomorrow night's Sidewalk Astronomy at Robinson Preserve is excellent.

If you haven't been to this new SA location, I can't say enough good things about it. The area devoted to our telescopes and other equipment is huge, there aren't any street or security lights nearby, and there's almost no waiting for objects to clear obstructions on the horizon--it's almost flat 360 degrees around.

Because of the weather and the great location, I anticipate pretty big crowds tomorrow, so if you're on the fence about coming with a telescope--PLEASE-- get off the fence and come on down! We can use every piece of equipment we can get out there!

You'll be glad you did!

BTW... I've mentioned this previously, but I'll say it again: If you've been to Robinson Preserve just to visit in the daytime and used the entrance at the very western end of 17th Avenue NW, THAT IS NOT THE ENTRANCE OR THE PART OF THE PRESERVE WHERE WE SET UP!

To get to the new site, turn west at the traffic light at the intersection of 75th Street NW and 9th Avenue NW. Drive 1.5 miles due west, and 100 yards past 99th Street NW, you'll see the entrance on your right.

Hope to see you tomorrow!!





40
Equipment for Sale/Trade / Meade 8" with tripod/equatorial wedge for sale
« on: October 07, 2018, 01:15:02 pm »
FYI...

Here is an older, but very-well preserved Meade 8" SCT (model 2080) telescope complete with tripod, equatorial wedge, and accessories. (Photos attached)
According to the seller, it's only been used a handful of times since new.

He is asking $800 for everything...


Full Description...
Model 2080 8" Schmidt-Cassegrain. The optics were warranted for life by Meade.
Includes tripod, motor drive, equatorial wedge,
6x30 mm viewfinder (with lighted reticle),
Prism diagonal

EYEPIECES:
MA 9mm
MA 25 mm
Televue 40mm (Plossl)
Televue 2.5x (Barlow)


Original shipping box and hard-foam carrying case, plus a map-light metal carrying case and original instruction manual are also included

IF YOU HAVE ANY QUESTIONS OR ARE INTERESTED IN PURCHASE, PLEASE CONTACT THE SELLER DIRECTLY...


Bill Priesmeyer
(941) 812-8281

41
SIDEWALK ASTRONOMY AT THE CELERY FIELDS
SATURDAY, SEPTEMBER 15TH

THE WEATHER LOOKS GOOD!


It's not very often that I get to call a "go-no-go" by noon on the day of a scheduled Sidewalk Astronomy event, but my confidence for this evening being REALLY NICE, is pretty high!

The attached screenshot is from a weather tool I use. I've highlighted the "important" blocks in yellow, as that's when we'll be out at the Celery Fields...from a bit before 8:00 p.m. until around 11 or so.

The top row indicates the expected cloud cover. Dark blue squares are good. Light blue are so-so. And if they're white... forget it! But they're blue... so we're good!

The next row shows "transparency," and though I'd prefer to see dark blue squares, the ice-blue squares show that we'll probably have a hazy layer above us for most of the evening--but it's not going to ruin our observing.

The next row shows "seeing," and that refers to how steady the skies are. These range from mid-blue to dark blue, so we should be enjoying some pretty steady images!

See you all tonight!

42
Equipment Wanted / Looking for an inexpensive "starter scope."
« on: September 08, 2018, 11:44:23 am »
One of our Sidewalk Astronomy attendees is looking to "dip a toe into the water" and is interested in purchasing an inexpensive telescope.

If you happen to have a piece of equipment you're no longer using that would be fairly priced in the $200-$300 range, please contact him directly at the number below.

Don Huntsinger
941 567-7029

43
Sidewalk Astronomy at the Celery Fields
Monthly observing of the celestial wonders resumes on September 15th

 
I am pleased to announce the return of Sidewalk Astronomy following our annual summer hiatus!

Weather permitting, on Saturday, September 15, 2018 starting at 7:45 p.m., and continuing until at least 10:15 p.m., the Local Group of Deep Sky Observers will set up high-quality telescopes for your viewing pleasure in the parking lot at the southeastern corner of Sarasota's Celery Fields Park.

Home to the Sarasota Audubon Society, located at 6893 Palmer Boulevard, Sarasota, you'll find parking available in the large parking lot just west of the Nature Center building. Our telescopes will be set up in the smaller lot on the east side of the Nature Center. (Telescopes will NOT be set up at the top of the hill.)

Observing highlights during the evening include the spectacular ringed planet Saturn, as well as the planets Mars, Jupiter and Venus. The first quarter moon and other deep-sky wonders will also be viewed through our telescopes.

As always, Sidewalk Astronomy is free of charge and is open to all ages.

44
We are issuing a (not overly-enthusiastic) "go" for tonight's Mars Opposition Observing event.

It appears that any rain that hits the area may hold off until after midnight... and if we're lucky, we'll be able to catch Mars through breaks in the clouds.

The caveat is that this is far from an ideal forecast, but given the fact that it's a pretty unique celestial event, we're going to give it a shot.

In case you missed it, complete details about tonight's event are copied below...


Jonathan



The Local Group of Deep Sky Observers is getting geared up to offer you yet another special summer event at Robinson Preserve (10299 9th Avenue NW) in Bradenton on Friday, July 20th from 10:00 p.m. until midnight.

This special Mars Observing event is being held to take advantage of the BEST views of the Red Planet since 2003! It's a don't-miss event!

As with all "Sidewalk Astronomy" events, it's FREE and weather-permitting.
In case of rain or clouds on the 20th, this event will be held the following night, Saturday, July 21st. (Also from 10:00 p.m. until midnight.)

We are thrilled to partner with the Manatee County Parks and Natural Resources Department, as well as Robinson Preserve for this very special event.

Please note that this will take place in parking lot just off the brand-new 9th Avenue NW entrance to the Preserve --and NOT at the Preserve's "main entrance" at the corner of 99th Street West and 17th Avenue!

45
Many of you took advantage of this past weekend's Saturn Observing event and were treated to some spectacular views of the ringed planet.

We'll be offering yet another special summer event at Robinson Preserve (10299 9th Avenue NW) in Bradenton on Friday, July 20th from 10:00 p.m. until midnight.

This special Mars Observing event is being held to take advantage of the BEST views of the Red Planet since 2003! It's a don't-miss event!

As with all "Sidewalk Astronomy" events, it's FREE and weather-permitting.

In case of rain or clouds on the 20th, this event will be held the following night, Saturday, July 21st. (Also from 10:00 p.m. until midnight.)


We are thrilled to partner with the Manatee County Parks and Natural Resources Department, as well as Robinson Preserve for this very special event.

Please note that this will take place in parking lot just off the brand-new 9th Avenue NW entrance to the Preserve --and NOT at the Preserve's "main entrance" at the corner of 99th Street West and 17th Avenue!

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