Eastern Iowa Star Party 2017!
At the time of this writing, we have seen another Eastern Iowa Star Party come and go… but hat a spectacular way to go!
Although the star party was an official 2 nights and an unofficial 3rd… some attendees spent a 4th nigh… Thursday through Sunday nights… and each night proved to be a wonderful night to celebrate our hobby.
We had at least 2 amateur astronomers out on Thursday, 17 on Friday and Saturday, and about 6 on Sunday nights… lots of astrophotography, visual, electronically assisted work went on as well as a lot of learning, experimentation, and comradery.
We had 3 excellent, formal presentations. Dr. Robert Mitchell gave a great talk on the Cassini mission… from start to finish; Zachary Luppen, an Astro-Physics major from Iowa City, gave a presentation on all of the work that institution has contributed to the space program. Zach was instrumental in putting together the displays for the Hawkeyes in Space Exhibit at the Old Capital Museum; lastly, Lisa and John Allseits provided updates as to their progress building the Mt. Jennings Observatory near Pearl City in Illinois. All of the presentations involved discussion and Q&A time
Along with midnight chili on Friday night and midnight beef stew on Saturday night, we held 5 raffles… 1 on Friday, and 4 on Saturday. About 25 items were given out in all, thanks to donations by club members, Sky and Telescope, Software Bisque, Orion, Celestron, and Explore Scientific. Please frequent these vendors and support them as they have supported us!
The main prizes were awarded at sunset on Saturday as follows: 5th place prize, an Orion Binoculars Starters Kit went to Dana Taylor, 4th place, Celestron 15 X 70 Sky Master Binoculars went to Mike Dannenfeldt, 3rd place, a 1.25” 2X Televue Barlow went to Mike Ombrello, 2nd place, a 5.5mm 62 degree Explore Scientific eyepiece went to Eric Claeys (Naperville Astronomy), and 1st place, a 32mm 100 degree Explore Scientific eyepiece went to Matt Neilssen… congrats guys!
Lastly, I’d like to extend special thanks to Craig, Jim, Mike O, Mike D, and Matt for their help with the party and to Dr. Mitchell for his allowing us to again use Menke Observatory.