MAS Membership Benefits
Along with the obvious benefits of participating in a society of people sharing a common interest, your membership in the Minnesota Astronomical Society provides other substantial, tangible benefits such as:
- Monthly meetings. Please refer to the ”Meetings” page for details.
- Star parties. Please refer to the ”Star Parties” page for details.
- Loaner telescopes. A number of loaner telescopes are available for members’ personal use. Telescopes are loaned for a period of 30 days. The loan is continually renewable so long as another member is not waiting for a telescope. Contact the MAS Vice President for information or to request a telescope.
- Use of observing facilities. MAS members can use the various observing facilities the Society maintains. Metcalf Field, the Cherry Grove Observatory, LLCC, the Joseph J. Casby Observatory and the Eagle Lake Observatory (consisting of the Onan Observatory, the Sylvia A. Casby Observatory and the HotSpot Classroom).
- Keyholder Training. With required training, MAS members can obtain keyholder privileges for the observing facilities listed above. Depending on the facility, training lasts from few hours of orientation to a full day at the Eagle Lake Observatory. Upon completion of training, MAS members are allowed personal use of the facilities, equipment and warming houses. Eligibility and service requirements vary from site to site — visit the ”Become a MAS Keyholder” webpage for details.
- Bi-monthly MAS newsletter. MAS members can subscribe to the Society’s bi-monthly, Gemini. It contains information about the organization and its activities as well as articles and columns by MAS members.
- Astronomical League Membership. The Astronomical League (AL) is a parent organization of many of the astronomy clubs and societies across the nation. As a member of the MAS, you also become an affiliate member of the Astronomical League. A portion of your membership dues goes to pay for your membership to the Astronomical League.
- AL Observing programs / certificates. The Astronomical League currently has more than 40 Observing Programs from easy to difficult, for young and old, designed to challenge your astronomical abilities. The Observing Lists provide a purpose to many observers and solve the issue of ”what else is there to observe”. The A. L. provides awards, pins and certificates upon completion of the observing lists. Additional details are available in the A. L. publication, Reflector, or by contacting the MAS Astronomical League Coordinator, Jerry Jones.
- Quarterly newsletter of the Astronomical League. Members receive a subscription to Reflector, the quarterly newsletter of the Astronomical League, a national federation of astronomical societies and clubs.
- E-mail list. Anyone can subscribe to the MAS e-mail lists. In addition to announcements regarding MAS events, list topics occasional notices and reminders of astronomical events (aurora announcements, for example). To subscribe, please visit the General Minnesota Astronomical Society Mailing list and follow the directions found there. You can also review an archive of messages, and maintain or terminate your subscription at this same location.
Additional mail lists can be found at lists.mnastro.org Mailing Lists
- Discounted subscription to Sky & Telescope magazine. For initial member discount subscriptions, the MAS must process the subscription on your behalf. Subsequent renewals may be sent directly by to to Sky Publishing without intervention by the MAS. In order to take advantage of the discount, do NOT submit your initial subscription directly to Sky Publishing. Simply add the discounted subscription fee listed on the “Join or Renew your Membership” page or on the membership application form to your annual dues when joining the MAS or renewing your membership. For further information, Email the Membership Coordinator, Steve Emert.
- Discounted subscription to Astronomy magazine. Discounted subscription to Astronomy magazine. Astronomy Magazine member discount subscriptions are available for one or two year subscriptions. All initial and renewal subscriptions to Astronomy must be processed by the MAS. Simply add the discounted subscription fee listed on the “Join or Renew your Membership” page or the membership application form to your annual dues when joining the MAS or renewing your membership. For further information, Email the Membership Coordinator, Steve Emert.
- Sky Publishing Merchandise. The publishers of Sky and Telescope magazine also sell books and other astronomy-related merchandise, all of which is available to MAS members at a discount. Discounts are available simply by listing “Minnesota Astronomical Society” in the appropriate place on the paper or electronic order form when you submit the order directly to Sky Publishing Corporation.
- Thousand Oaks solar filters. Thousand Oaks Optical, manufacturer of solar filters and other equipment, is offering 10% off all products, excluding their H-Alpha filters, with no minimum purchase required, to MAS members. Members must indicate 10% Minnesota Astronomical Society Club Discount when ordering on-line at their web site, www.thousandoaksoptical.com
- San Pedro Valley Observatory remote telescope rental. MAS has obtained member discounts for access to a remote observatory – San Pedro Valley Observatory. They offer on-site hosting of your own telescope in their observatory, with internet access. They also offer nightly rental of their telescopes. The prices for MAS members is $400 per month for the hosting service (normal price is $500 per month), and remote telescope access rental is $75 per night for MAS members (regularly $120 per night). For further details contact firstname.lastname@example.org or 520-250-0407 or visit www.remoteobservatories.com
- Discounted / group purchases of annual publications and Software. Most years, the MAS purchases a quantity of annual publications and software. These may include the Observer’s Handbook (published by the Royal Canadian Astronomical Society), Astronomical Calendars or planetarium software items. Contact the Society’s Secretary for more information, to reserve copies or to check availability of extra copies.
- Astronomical League book service. MAS members may order any book on astronomy through the Astronomical League’s Book Service at a 10% discount. For information on the ordering procedure, look in the most recent copy of the League’s quarterly publication, the Reflector.