The MAS ”Virgo Venture” is an star party dedicated to observing many of the brighter galaxies in the Virgo Cluster. The Virgo Cluster is a cluster of galaxies in the constellation Virgo comprising approximately 1300 (and possibly up to 2000) member galaxies The cluster forms the heart of the larger Virgo Supercluster, of which the Local Group is an outlying member.
The first MAS Virgo Venture was held in 2002, and has been held annually at the Cherry Grove Observatory. The Venture is scheduled for the new moon weekend, usually one month after the Messier Marathon, when Virgo is in a prime viewing position. As with the Marathon, Friday is the primary night, with Saturday being the backup night.
As with all Cherry Grove events, the Virgo Venture is held only if the skies are clear and will be CANCELLED IF CLOUDY. See the MAS home page and the Virgo Venture Discussion on the forums for the latest information regarding the star party status. You can also call the MAS Message Service at 952-467-2426, after 4:00 pm the day of the event for the ”Go / No-Go” decision.
Additional information on the Cherry Grove Observatory, including map and directions, can be found at the Cherry Grove webpage. Information regarding weather at Cherry Grove can be found on the MAS weather web page HERE. Also see the Cherry Grove Event Schedule for the full list of Cherry Grove events.
Here is a set of basic maps using a Telrad finder
Greg Haubrich’s Virgo Cluster Asterism Chart
and Jerry’s Virgo Venture checklist