To the uninformed, astronomy might be dismissed as simply
''looking through a telescope at the stars''. Amateur astronomers know
that nothing could be further from the truth. There are more avenues
astronomical exploration and participation than can be enjoyed in a
The diversity of MAS-sponsored events is testament to this
variety. There is literally something for everyone whether novices
considering their first telescope purchase or advanced amateurs pursuing
scientific research purely for the joy of discovery and
Select an icon below for event information or follow the links in the left hand column.
Star Party Calendar & Schedules
Monthly Event Calendar Full Star Party Schedule Onan Public Schedule
Annual Onan Observatory Events
Astronomy Day Camping with the Stars Fall Astronomy Day
2013 Onan Special Events
This year we have "Special Events" planned for observing two potentially outstanding comets that will be passing through the inner solar system. In early March, comet PANSTARRS (C/2011 L4) will be well positioned for early evening viewing as it passes the sun. Comet PANSTARRS will pass closest to Earth on March 5th, 2013 at a distance of 1.09 au. It will come to perihelion (closest approach to the Sun) on March 10th, 2013. The comet is predicted to brighten to apparent magnitude - 4 (roughly equivalent to Venus). Special star parties are scheduled for March 9th, 16th and 30th to see this rare event.
While it is rare to get a very bright "naked eye" comet, it is even more rare to get two in the same year. In the late fall of 2013 comet ISON (C/2012 S1) has the potential to be one of the brightest comets in recorded history. ISON will be passing extremely close to the sun on November 28th at a distance of 0.012 AU (1,100,000 mi) from the center point of the Sun, a mere 680,000 miles above the Sun's surface. The comet may become extremely bright if it remains intact, probably reaching a negative magnitude and may briefly become brighter than the full Moon.
At the Onan Observatory we will be holding several Special Event Comet Parties, November 30th, December 7th and December 21st for viewing Comet ISON. These will be "Cancelled if Cloudy" events with special start times of 4:00 pm.
For more information these VERY Special Events at the Onan Observatory, select the icon above.
Annual Cherry Grove Events
Messier Marathon Virgo Venture Mini Messier (4M)
Annual LLCC Events
Northern Nights Star Fest
For LLCC Messier Marathon, Virgo Venture and Fall Mini Messier go to Cherry Grove Events links above.