Richmond Astronomical Society
729th Consecutive Meeting
June 8, 2010
Jim Browder called our meeting to order in the Eureka room. This meeting was going to have a different format – business first, the main presentation, and then after the break, the short talk.
Greeting & Announcements – approximately 43 in attendance at the meeting.
Please check the link to our RAS blog: http://richastro.org/index.php/category/blog/
Jim Browder is a celebrity. Jim displayed an ad for Astronomy Technology, and showed us a photo of him, but it’s a small photo in the lower corner of the ad.
There were several items for sale, including a few eyepieces by John Raymond.
There were a few photos for anyone to look at.
A license plate holder that goes on the back of a car was on the table. It was a recent purchase from the RAS Café Press store. The shop can be found at http://www.cafepress.com/RichAstroShop .
Science Museum Skywatch was a success on May 21.
Ken Wilson talked about sighting Comet McNaught in the SE sky.
Terry Barker and others mentioned the pairing of Mars and Venus close to each other.
The next Science Museum Skywatch/LiveSky show is June 18. Please sign-up if you are available to attend and bring a scope.
Skywatch at Willow Oaks Country Club on Friday June 11. Rain date is July 9.
Cub Scout Twilight Camp at Fairfield Prebyterian Church on Tuesday June 22. Rain date is June 25.
ECVAR (East Coast Video Astronomy Rendevous) in Luray, Virginia on June 10-13. Please see http://sites.google.com/site/ecvar2010/ for more information.
Green Bank StarQuest in Green Bank, WV on July 7-10. Please see http://www.greenbankstarquest.org/ for more information.
Annual dues are due and should be given to Jim Blowers. Membership is $30. Observatory memberships and magazine subscriptions increase the amount.
Payment can be made by PayPal at http://richastro.org/ras_payments.htm
Observatory Report (John Barnett)
John Barnett will be hosting an open house for members and guests on Wednesday, June 16th at 8:30pm. On the 15th, he will email a weather advisory and a reminder to all members. Contact Jim Blowers to update your email address if it has changed.
Library Report was not given. The RAS library was moved out of the RAS recently. At this time, it is in public storage with controlled atmospheric conditions. An effort is in progress to find a long-term location where RAS members can easily access the library contents.
June’s Presentation: “News in the World of Weather Forecasting” by John Bernier
John Bernier spoke about many aspects of the weather affecting our lives and environment. He started off his presentation by asking about a very active political topic: “Climate Change – Fact? Fiction? Fantasy?” He used the beliefs of Al Gore to take the side of there is global warming, Ken Cuchinelli to side with no global warming, and Sargent Schultz (from Hogan’s Heroes) to take the middle ground using Schultz’s well-known line of “I know nothing!”. Very effective!
Since the dawn of time, we have had 7 ice ages, where the warmer periods have lasted longer than the colder periods. Sometime during the warmer periods, it has been warm enough for the dinosaurs to venture up to the Arctic.