Welcome to Quad Cities Astronomical Society!

Stimulating an interest in the science of astronomy within the Quad Cities, nurturing an ongoing desire by our members to study the cosmos, and to providing members of our community opportunities to experience the
Joy and Beauty of Astronomy.

Upcoming Events

The Meridian News

  • Skyward – November 2021 By David H. Levy
    Skyward – November 2021 By David H. Levy
    October 17, 2021

    Skyward – November 2021 By David H. Levy Galaxies, just for the sake of argument  A few weeks ago, I received a message from Cameron Gillis, an amateur astronomer who wrote that he liked galaxies. Just for fun, I decided to take the opposite approach, a philosophical reversal. If he likes galaxies, then I hate them.  As we prepared for our meeting I began to explain the various reasons why I hate them.  When, for example, I am observing with a telescope and the Andromeda galaxy enters my field of view, I quickly leave the telescope and ride my bicycle to the end of our driveway and back. The more I stretch the story the greater the laughter becomes.  I especially get annoyed by the dark Hydrogen-II regions that stretch across its hideous girth. The cluster of galaxies in the Virgo cluster, particularly Messiers 84 and 86, are so bland that I sometimes have to leave the telescope altogether!       The worst galaxy is our own.  When I look up at the evening sky, the Milky Way obstructs my view as it straddles the night from Cassiopeia all the way down to Sagittarius. The stars are so thick that I can hardly see black […]...

  • 2021-09-18 Scouts at Menke
    September 19, 2021

    Really a great event last night… there were about 20 in attendance… We started off with a greeting and introduction in the classroom and an outline of how the short event would go… and then a Q&A session… Then we went outside for a quick tour of the outer facility… a limited tour of the sky (the moon was a hindrance pf course)… a demo of the roll of roof structure and the 20″ Newt… Then back to the classroom for more Q&A… the moon presentation was played followed by additional Q&A… then into the dome… We talked about the dome and scope… talked about the automation… then all were able to get great views thru the 14″ SCT of Jupiter, its bands, and 4 moons… Saturn, its rings and a moon or two… and a very nice clear and detailed moon. We were also able to get a pretty fair view of M13… We talked a bit about light pollution… and gave a number of hand outs on the subject as well as a map of the moon showing the various seas and the Apollo landing sites… All in all it was an excellent outing… thank you to the […]...

  • Skyward for October 2021 By David H. Levy
    Skyward for October 2021 By David H. Levy
    September 13, 2021

    Fond memories of Carolyn Shoemaker One clear evening during the summer of 2019, I was using Pegasus, one of my childhood friend Carl’s telescopes, at our annual Adirondack Astronomy Retreat. When my cellphone began to ring, I picked it up with some surprise. At the other end of the line was Carolyn Shoemaker. I was thrilled to hear from her, as it had been some time since our last contact. Carolyn was doing well, except for a mild loss of hearing. She had called to say that since her daughter and son-in-law had moved to New Mexico, she would be living at the Peaks, a comfortable assisted living facility in Flagstaff. My colleague Brent Archinal gave me her cell phone number. I was able to speak with her again a few months later. I wanted to find a way to increase the frequency of our conversations. “You speak with your brother Richard every Monday,” Wendee commented, and suggested, “Why not call Carolyn every Monday as well? For the next 18 months that’s what I did. Carolyn would pick up the phone and announce, “It is David. It must be Monday!” Wendee would often join the discussion as well. But when […]...

  • Skyward for September 2021. Astronline. By David H. Levy.
    Skyward for September 2021. Astronline. By David H. Levy.
    August 18, 2021

    Skyward for September. Astronline. By David H. Levy. During the last almost two years I have been busier than ever, meeting many new people, giving lectures, quoting poetry, and advocating observing the night sky. And Wendee and I have barely left home. Obviously, I have not been able to give lectures in person since the Covid 19 pandemic began. On the home front for me, our local Tucson Amateur Astronomy Association meets the first Friday of every month online over the Zoom cloud. (see www.tucsonastronomy.org) But almost every day, I reconnect with friends in astronomy clubs around the world. On Tuesdays, I am a part of Scott Roberts’ weekly Global Star Party. (For more about this, visit https://explorescientificusa.com/products/explore-alliance-global-star-party) Scott has now had more than 60 of these wonderful events, and I enjoy each one. On Wednesdays and Saturdays, I am part of the Montreal Centre of the Royal Astronomical Society of Canada, where I meet people I’ve known for years, especially Carl, one of my best friends since we were teenagers in 1964. As a graduate student at Queen’s University in the 1970s, I also was active with the RASC’s Kingston Centre. I have also reconnected with the Denver Astronomical […]...

  • Meteor Shower Party – Canceled!
    Meteor Shower Party – Canceled!
    August 7, 2021

    Well, it looks like we will be clouded out tonite, so the Meteor Shower Party at Pleasant Valley Junior High School has been canceled… The Perseids can be seen for another week or two, so get out side and look up… head to a dark area if possible… We’ll hold the event again next year! Clear Skies, Jeff...

  • Saturday, August 7th Meteor Shower Party
    Saturday, August 7th Meteor Shower Party
    August 6, 2021

    Watch here for last minute cancelation due to weather!...

  • 07/31/2021 at Menke
    07/31/2021 at Menke
    August 1, 2021

    The night started out quite a bit clouded than expected… fortunately Robert and I completed a multistar alignment of the 14″ SCT by sunset… we talked with Sam and Rolando, who had first light with a new 210mm f3.8 Explore Scientific Newt that he just bought… We checked to see how well the WiFi worked out on the field, and we were able to use zoom and walk the perimeter of the site successfully… very cool! Guests Byron and Jen showed up shortly after and they brought 4 scopes with them that they set up… 2 smaller refracrors, a 12″ and a 17″ dob… pretty cool! Shortly thereafter the skies did some clearing and the visual astronomy began. Here is what Robert and I viewed: + Albierio + M56 + Dumbell Nebula  + M71 + Eta Cas… Achird… double star + Mu Bootes double double star… b is 2.25″! + Xi Bootes double star  + 1962 Struve double star + Saturn + Jupiter + Andromeda  The last couple hours were pretty humid for the guys outdoors, but it seems like everyone had a great time… luv those binaries! Tomorrow nite, with a little luck… we’ll give it another shot as […]...

  • July 19 Club Meeting and August 7th Meteor Shower Party
    July 19 Club Meeting and August 7th Meteor Shower Party
    July 18, 2021

    Hi all! We will again be holding our annual Meteor Shower Party at the Pleasant Valley Junior High School this year! The event starts after sunset on Saturday, August 7th… come a bit early to set up your lawn chairs for a wonderful evening under the stars… we hope! Club members sometimes bring telescopes and binoculars for viewing, but these are not required for enjoying the meteor shower… so guests, lawn chairs and non-alchoholic beverages are sufficient! Of course if we are clouded or rained out, the event will be canceled… We will be selling raffle tickets for a nice, new, intro level telescope at the event… $2 per ticket… three for $5… need not be present to win! The scope is an Orion Starblast 4.5 Astro Reflector, and has all the accessories needed to get you off and running! To prepare you for the event, you are also welcome to join us at our virtual club meeting on Monday, July 19th at 7PM… we will be giving a presentation on space rocks and Meteor showers and then a few more details specifically about the August Perseid Meteor Shower! Questions, as are guests, are always welcome! Here is the link […]...

  • Skyward for September 2021. By David Levy
    Skyward for September 2021. By David Levy
    July 18, 2021

    Skyward for September 2021. By David Levy Rebirth of an Observatory. “How would you like to go to prison?” was one of the first things that Frank Lopez asked me. My stunned expression prompted Frank to clarify: “The Federal prison off Wilmot Road has an astronomy club.” That was enough: we enjoyed two wonderful evenings down there, and even showed Orion to the group using one of my favorite telescopes. I dealt with Frank once again in the last few months, as our Jarnac Observatory’s Shaar house, the major observatory building in my back yard, threatened to collapse earlier this year. The Shaar name is from the Hebrew word for “gate” or “opening” and I use the name because the structure resembles a miniature version of our Shaar Hashomayim synagogue in Montreal. The observatory is as much a temple for me as the Shaar was. Frank brings a lifetime of experience to the observatories he builds and repairs. He came up with a plan that would restore my building with a brand new sliding roof. Working occasionally with assistants but mostly alone, the construction took several months, virtually all last winter and spring. (Actually my sliding roof is the entire […]...

  • Virtual Public Meeting Sat, July 10… 8pm
    Virtual Public Meeting Sat, July 10… 8pm
    July 8, 2021

    Well, it looks like our Public Nite is going to be weathered out again… But hey, let’s do a virtual one anyway! A perfect time to ask intro level questions about the hobby… what scopes would be best for you… where to buy them… what you can expect to do with them after you get them… accessories… good ones… better ones… why it gets cloudy when you get yours! Zoom in this coming Saturday… 8PMish: https://zoom.us/j/92166254560?pwd=UHBPZEpoQk05MmI5RExsWnFBazIydz09 Jeff...

We are always looking for more observing buddies!