October Observing night, a success.
The start of the Autumn and Winter observing season is fast approaching and at our October observing meeting we kicked the season off with a night of what you can observe. Attendance was up and we had a full house, with three new members joining and three further guests joining us for the first time.
The evening started with the usual Society updates and an overview of the outreach Weekend held at Whittington Castle, Shropshire. A very informative and inspiring talk was giving by our Vice Chair, Jonathen Harty FRAS, who navigated us around the constellation of Lyra, an often overlooked but wonderfully interesting constellation. We also learnt why a planetary nebula is named as such.
The sky cleared outside and during the interval people went outside where Jonathen pointed everyone in the right direction in finding Lyra and the star of Vega.
Continuing the evening, Pete Williamson FRAS gave us a whistle stop tour of his adventures at the Skellig star party in Ireland. It was a cheery talk filled with humour that had everyone giggling. It is always nice to hear about astronomical adventures.
Finally the evening concluded with more of what to see in the night sky and how to get out and start observing. The usual messages of wrap up warm, be prepared and take notes was as always reinforced. Targets included the Hyades, The Perseus double cluster, the Orion Nebula, The beehive cluster and Andromeda. An observing challenge has been set and a mini guide observing booklet was created for society members to take away.
Whilst all this was happening, Dave Smith was running his newly set up meteor detector in the background in hope to catch the pings of the draconids of which the peak was in progress. 2 pings were captured.
We welcome the dark sky’s and hope to continue to encourage people to look up, even for just a few brief moments.
Clear skies and keep looking up
Tracey Snelus FRAS