Photo submitted by Mack Acheson
|The Ogletree Star Gaze was brought to fruition on March 11th. The weather was ideal. This year only brought out 25-30 people as opposed to around 100 last year. My theory is that word leaked that Rhon would not be in attendance. Those that were on hand to share their hardware and enthusiasm were Mackall Acheson, Alan Cook, and Jim and Diane Locke. Everyone was very complimentary of how the kids were treated by the scope owners. The Locke's and Mackall earned extra credit for coming from Montgomery. Alan also deserves credit for lugging a 10" SCT with lower back pain. Andy Camerio had planned on coming from Montgomery for the first attempt that was rained out. Thanks for trying Andy! Mackall also brought his digital camera and supplied these shots to share.|
|I enjoyed this year's event more in a couple of ways. One being
the time I was able to spend with people that had questions. I spent
quite a lot of time explaining the ecliptic and how the planets and star
traverse the sky. The other plus was that I got to spend some time
talking to Alan, Jim, and Mackall which would not have happened last year.
I hope we can get together again. The Moon, Jupiter, and Saturn were
all in fine form. The Orion Nebula was washed out a little by the
Moon and local lights but was still interesting enough to command some
attention. More people were interested in the Pleiades and the Beehive
this year. I have already received some follow up e-mails with questions
so I think we have given the bug to a few more kids. Mission accomplished.
Ogletree Elementary School Star Gaze 2002
Thanks to all of the folks from the AAS that helped us at Ogletree Elementary in Auburn! On Tuesday March 19th, which was our third attempt in a month, we got our star party off the ground at 6:00.
Rhon and Joyce Jenkins and Rick Allen joined me. The turn out was very good. The estimates I received from Ms. Herring, the principal, and a couple others put the attendance near 100. We made the decision to go for it at 2:00 even though it did not look too promising. I trusted the hour by hour forecast from The Weather Channel web site and it paid off. There were a few clouds but they were not a real problem. More of a problem were a couple of security lights that, as Rhon said, "could be seen from space."
We were able to enjoy Jupiter, Saturn, the Moon, and the Orion Nebula. We had 4 telescopes going and stayed busy for about an hour. I saw 2 telescopes brought by students as well. Since two of my children are students at Ogletree, I knew most of the people in attendance and I can say they had a very good time and I am sure we will be invited to have a repeat performance. I want to thank Russell Whigham for helping with the recruitment, and Rhon, Joyce, and Rick for showing up and doing such a great job with the crowd! Also, since we had attempted two other nights I had several other people that had volunteered to come earlier but could not attend Tuesday. Alan Cook, Eddie Kirkland, John Clifton, and Alan Akin were in that group.
This was my first school star party and I must say I enjoyed the questions and enthusiasm shown by not only the students but the parents too. I look forward to going to other schools in the area when they call.
Greg Glasscock firstname.lastname@example.org