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San Juan Stargazers study Messier objects

By Joan Mieritz
Special to The PREVIEW

The next regular meeting of the San Juan Stargazers will be on Thursday, June 26, at 7 p.m. at the Chamber of Commerce on Hot Springs Boulevard. We will be studying the Messier objects that are visible in the summer night sky, including nebula, star clusters and galaxies. Then we will see part of the new “Cosmos” series about Charles Messier (1730-1817), who started out looking for comets before he developed his famous list of the brightest objects in the night sky.

We also are operating the telescopes at star parties every other Friday night, including June 20, July 18 and also on Saturday, July 5, at Chimney Rock National Monument. We have new Chimney Rock “go-to” telescopes that are absolutely amazing and we will also have a 20-inch telescope, weather permitting, with Saturn being its best in 10 years. Club members also bring their own telescopes to share.

Local people are always encouraged to come to Chimney Rock Star Parties, which include an educational talk before we view from the upper parking lot. It’s not just for tourists.

If you are a visiting amateur astronomer, you are invited to join our club meeting and share with us your interests and activities. We love new ideas. Also, you can join our star parties, with or without your scope.

The San Juan Stargazers are part of the Astronomical League, which includes clubs from all over the U.S. We have a great website, www.SanJuanStargazers.com, as well as an email address, sjstargazers@gmail.com, and a club phone number, 335-8286, to help communicate with the public.

Anyone interested in learning more about astronomy is invited to come.

This story was posted on June 19, 2014.