Saturday October 13, 2018
Eagle Lake Observatory at Baylor Regional Park
Address: 10775 County Rd 33, Norwood Young America, MN



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The Minnesota Astronomical Society would like to invite you to attend the Astronomical League’s Fall Astronomy Day activities at the MAS Eagle Lake Observatory in Baylor Regional Park. Speakers are scheduled throughout the day and will give talks on astronomy and what there is to see. Door prize drawings will be held Saturday evening and include MAS merchandise, astronomy books and videos. Weather permitting, the evening will conclude with tours of the night sky and of course stargazing.

Schedule of Events – Subject to Change

Saturday October 13, 2018

The observatory will open at 1:00 pm for some solar viewing as well as other bright daytime objects. Venus and Mercury will be visible in the afternoon. Jupiter, The Moon, Saturn, and Mars after sunset. In the evening we’ll have some of the late Summer & Fall objects coming into view including the Swan nebula, Ring nebula, the Dumbbell nebula, the Wild Duck cluster, the Whirlpool galaxy, the Hercules Cluster, and Andromeda galaxy among many others.

Scheduled Speakers

1:30

Speaker: Brad Nasset – Cruisin’ the Milkyway – See actual models of the Sun, Earth, and other planets placed around the Observing Plaza to create a visual, interactive Solar System. As actual constellations are added to the field we can gain an better understanding of the night sky and the Milky Way Galaxy.

2:00

Speaker: Brad Nasset – Space Adventure: Mapping Our Night Sky for Exploration. Not sure what to look at in the night sky? Wonder how we fit into the Milky Way Galaxy and the Universe? As the Earth spins each night, and orbits the Sun throughout the seasons, the constellations appear to move in the sky. By understanding how the sky is mapped out we can better understand star charts (and apps) and know how to find constellations, galaxies, nebula, and other interesting objects in the night sky.

3:00

Speaker: Steve Emert – Debunking conspiracy theories: Conspiracy theories have become an ever increasing trend; the Earth is flat, gravity is not real, we never went to the Moon, the Moon is a hologram, etc. This talk will give you the knowledge to scientifically debunk these ideas and help stop the spread of misinformation! 

4:00

Speaker: Colin Kilbane- Mad Scientist demonstrations – Fascinating science demonstrations such as chemical reactions, bubbling potions and more.

5:00

Dinner Break

7:00

Speaker: Jake Hairrell – What’s Up Tonight

8:00

Door Prize Drawing

9:30

Tour of the Sky on the Plaza: We will conduct a laser pointer tour of the constellations from the plaza in front of the Onan Observatory. (If it is cloudy there will be a presentation in the classroom)

Evening Activities

The evening will continue with viewing through our array of telescopes. We bid farewell to the best summer constellations, nebula and clusters and enjoy the arrival of some of the fall and winters best while the Minnesota temperatures are still “balmy”.


MAS Observing site pictures

Eagle Lake Observatory

Consisting of the Onan Observatory, the Sylvia A. Casby Observatory and the HotSpot Classroom, the MAS’ Eagle Lake Observatory is the regions premier all-volunteer public observing facility.

  • Two observatories with more than a dozen of the finest amateur telescopes available to view through.
  • Real-time video viewing capabilities for lunar, planetary and deep-sky viewing.
  • Solar filters allow safe viewing of the Sun’s surface, sunspots and solar prominences.
  • Mounted 15×80 binoculars for the ultimate “wide-field” stargazing experience.
  • A heated classroom to take the chill out of the cool fall nights.
  • Electrical outlets on the outside of the buildings for those who bring their own scopes.
  • Paved handicap parking adjacent to the wheelchair accessible observatory.

Location

Baylor Regional Park is roughly 25 miles southwest of the Eden Prairie, MN and just north of Norwood-Young America. It is easily reached either by Minnesota Highway 5 or U.S. Highway 212. Click HERE for interactive map.


Astronomy Day

The theme of Astronomy Day is “Bringing Astronomy to the People”. This worldwide event invites astronomical societies, planetariums, museums, and observatories to sponsor public viewing sessions, presentations, workshops, and other activities to increase public awareness about astronomy and our wonderful universe.

Astronomy Day was born in California in 1973. Doug Berger, then president of the Astronomical Association of Northern California, decided that rather than try to entice people to travel long distances to visit observatory open houses, they would set up telescopes closer to where the people were – busy locations – urban locations like street corners, shopping malls, parks, etc.

His strategy paid off. Not only did Astronomy Day go over with a bang, not only did the public find out about the astronomy club, they found out about future observatory open houses. Since the public got a chance to look through a portable telescope, they were hooked. They then wanted to see what went on at the bigger telescopes, so they turned out in droves at the next observatory open house.

 

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