Richmond Astronomical Society

October Meeting Minutes

Nov 7th, 2011 | By | Category: Meetings

RichmondAstronomical Society

745th Consecutive Meeting

October 11, 2011


Jim Browder called our meeting to order in theEurekaroom.


Greeting & Announcements – approximately 29 in attendance at the meeting.

Please check the link to our RAS blog:


The procedure for the election of the Board members for 2012 was discussed.  David Medici introduced the slate of nominees:

Jim Blowers,            Jim Browder,            Gary Cowardin,            Chris McCann,

David P. Medici,      Bill Newman,            Prashant Reddy,           Tim Streagle,

David Walton,          Betty Wilson,            Ken Wilson.

Nominations from the floor and the elections will be done in November.


Share table:

There were several items on display.  A CD of demo astronomy programs.  Library books (returned and to be picked up).  An Orion catalog.  October issue of Astronomy magazine.  An occultation astronomy journal. 


Library Report was given byVirginia.  All is good at the library.  She brought in a set of books, including “Beyond the Known Universe”, “Ancient Light”, “Splendor of the Universe”, “Manual of Advanced Manual Astronomy”, and an old book from 1929, “Energy”.


Observatory Report:  Physical updates are being done to the observatory.  John Barnette is looking for more people who are interested in receiving training.  Training will start soon for the original group from last month.


Past Events:

  • Science Museum Skywatch for September was clouded out.
  • RAS Fall Picnic: great time.  Good turnout.  Sky cleared up for 3-4 hours between midnight and dawn.
  • VAAS: About 30 attendees, good speakers, dark sky at the observation site, but cloudy
  • Observing at the scout camp:  Tim and Jim Browder had great views of the moon and other objects.  There were many people looking at their internet broadcast. 
  • ECVAR:
  • DelMarVa: Ray attended this.  Thursday – seeing OK, pushed the viewing limits, a lot of fuzzy objects.  Showers on Friday & Saturday.   DelMarVa is held each May and September.



Upcoming Events:

  • Science Museum Skywatch No skywatch in October and November!


  • Astronomy Badge Event for Girl Scouts at the Science Museum of Virginia, October 15, 9-12 Noon: The Science Museum is hosting a special event for girl scouts from 9 to 12Noon. If you can help with this event, please contact Jim Browder at


  • Skywatch at City Point, October 15: Skywatch at the City Point Unit ofPetersburgNational Battlefield. Please contact John Raymond at if you can bring a telescope to this event.


  • Skywatch at Scotchtown, October 15: Please contact John Raymond at if you can bring a telescope to this event.


  • Observing session for RAS members and friends, October 29: See above for directions to the scout reservation.


  • Mid-Atlantic Star Party, October 24 — 30: Star Party near Robbins, NC;


  • East Coast Star Party,Coinjock,NC, Oct 21-23: Contact Kent Blackwell for more information at Note that this is a revised date from previous announcements.


  • Fan Mountain Retreat — Charlottesville Astronomical Society, October 28 – 30: RAS members are invited. If you are interested in attending, please contact Richard Drumm with the Charlottesville Society directly at


  • Skywatch at Byrd Elementary in Goochland, November 4: A special skywatch for fellow astronomer and elementary school teacher, Karren Streagle, for students ofByrdElementary School. Please let Jim Browder know at if you can bring a scope to this event.


  • Skywatch at Scotchtown, November 5: Please contact John Raymond at if you can bring a telescope to this event.


  • Skywatch at Woodlake, November 6: Please contact John Raymond at if you can bring a telescope to this event.  Last outreach activity for the year.


  • A Heart of Virginia Fall Star Party, November 18 — 19: Star party hosted by the Heart of Virginia Scout Reservation, open to the public, convenient location, nice facilities and a dark sky; Don’t miss it — this should be a great event!  The festivities start at 4:00 PM pm on Friday, November 18 with an astronomy club social.  $15 entry + $6 for lodging.


  • December RAS pot luck party – location TBA.



Short Talk: “Dark Skies Update,” Laura Graham

      <to be updated>




Presentation: “Adventures in Astronomical Imaging,” Tim Streagle

      <to be updated>




The next RAS meeting will be Tuesday, November 8th at the SMV.

The next board meeting will be Monday, November 21 at Extra Billy’s at 7:00 PM (arrive earlier for dinner). Meeting is open to all members.

Check out the web site at

Virginia Skylines: Be sure to check out the latest version of Virginia Skylines on our web site.  Virginia Skylines is a weekly podcast written by Leslie Bochenski, astronomy educator with theScienceMuseum andThomasJeffersonHigh School.

RAS Café Press store.  Please take a look at the online store where you can purchase items embossed with the RAS label. The site can be found at .


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