Annual Star Party To Be Offered Aug. 10 At Cloudland Canyon State Park

Monday, July 1, 2013

Barnard Astronomical Society (BAS) of Chattanooga, in conjunction with the management of Cloudland Canyon State Park and the Friends of Cloudland Canyon State Park will present an informative Astronomy program followed by observation of the night sky on Saturday, Aug. 10, from 8-11 p.m.. The video portion of the program will be presented at 8 p.m. and will focus on identifying the constellations as well as other objects in the night sky. After the video the telescopes will be available along with knowledgeable BAS members to help you have a memorable evening and learn about the heavenly bodies at the same time.

BAS members will be on hand with a number of telescopes to provide observations of objects that you cannot see with the naked eye. BAS members love discussing those amazing objects, millions of miles from earth that you will see through the telescopes.

The Moon

Prepare for an awesome spectacle. The moon's disk has a pastel-cream and gray background, streamers of material from impact craters stretch halfway across the lunar surface, river-like riles wind for hundreds of miles, numerous mountain ranges and craters are available for inspection. At low or high power the moon is continually changing as it goes through its phases. Occasionally you will be treated to a lunar eclipse.

The Sun  

It is quite safe to view the Sun if you utilize a proper solar filter. The Sun is fascinating to inspect as you detect and watch the ever-changing sunspot activity. If you are fortunate enough, and are willing to travel to remote locations, you may at some point experience a solar eclipse. For more information see our article - Observing The Sun

The Planets  

Observation of planets will keep you very busy. You can see Jupiter with its great red spot change hourly, study the cloud bands and watch its moons shuttle back and forth. Study Saturn and its splendid ring structure, watch Venus and Mercury as they go through their moon-like phases. Observe Mars and see its polar cap changes or watch the dust storms and deserts bloom with life. Uranus, Neptune and Pluto can be seen easily with 8" or larger telescopes.

Star Clusters  

There are two types of star clusters- (1) open star clusters (also called galactic clusters) which are loosely arranged groups of stars, occasionally not too distinctive from the background stars, and (2) globular star clusters which are tightly packed groups of many millions of stars.

Nebulae

These are glowing clouds of gas falling into two types- (1) planetary nebulae which are relatively small ball-shaped clouds of expanding gases and are believed to be the remnants of stellar explosions, and (2) diffuse nebulae which are vast, irregularly-shaped clouds of gas and dust

Galaxies

These are vast, remote "island universes," each composed of many billions of stars. Galaxies exist in a variety of sizes with regular and irregular shapes.

Comets

Magnificent comets are routinely visible through telescopes .

You may see the ever-changing dance of Jupiter's moons; the planet-wide dust storms of Mars; the mountains, valleys, and craters of our own Moon; the phases of Mercury; lunar craters less than three miles across; Martian polar caps and major dark surface features during oppositions; several additional cloud belts on Jupiter, with some detail in the belts, plus the shadows of Jupiter's moons on the planet during transits; Cassini's division in Saturn's rings on a regular basis, plus four or five of its moons; Uranus and Neptune visible as very small discs.

Organizers said, "So come with your questions and have them answered by a knowledgeable BAS member. This is an excellent opportunity for families to enjoy an evening out, in a beautiful park setting. You could come early with your picnic lunch and enjoy the other park amenities; walking the trails, seeing the waterfalls and visiting the Interpretive Center."

BAS members are highly skilled and this will be an opportunity that normally isn't available without going to the The Barnard Astronomical Society Planetarium in Chattanooga. Bring your comfortable lawn chair, blanket and insect repellent. Flashlights are optional, but if brought they must have red cellophane over the lens to protect night vision.

The astronomical presentation is free, but the normal park parking fee of $5 per vehicle applies.



MGHC To Hold Rain Barrel Class Saturday

The Master Gardeners of Hamilton County, in association with the University of Tennessee Extension, hold their Rain Barrel Class this Saturday from 10 a.m.-noon. MGHC classes take place at the UT Extension, Agricultural Service Center, 6183 Adamson Circle, located off Bonny Oaks Drive. The cost is $40 per person (payable to UT-TSU Extension) and includes the barrel, plus the ... (click for more)

Free Hikes At All Tennessee State Parks On June 2 For National Trails Day

Tennessee State Parks will celebrate National Trails Day and kick off Great Outdoors Month with free, guided hikes at all 56 parks on Saturday, June 2. The variety of events includes ranger-led day hikes, night hikes, history hikes, nature hikes and trail clean-up hikes. With more than 1,000 miles to explore, ranging from easy, paved trails to rugged backcountry trails to ... (click for more)

Jury Finds Donaldson Guilty Of Second-Degree Murder In Killing Of Son-In-Law

A Criminal Court jury late Friday afternoon returned a verdict of guilty of second-degree murder against Glen Donaldson in the killing of his son-in-law, Adam Levi. He is facing 15-60 years in state prison. Judge Don Poole will set the sentence at a sentencing hearing on July 12.  He has been free on bond, but was taken into custody after the verdict. The jury deliberated ... (click for more)

1st Vote On Controversial Signal Mountain Grocery Proposal Set June 13; Town To Choose Either Tennessee American Or Waldens Ridge For Water Service

The next steps in rezoning 617 Cauthen Way were discussed at the Signal Mountain work session Friday afternoon. Since the last council meeting, Town Manager Boyd Veal created a list of conditions to include in the zoning ordinance relating to the proposed commercial development designed to assure that there is no negative impact to the surrounding properties or to the interest of ... (click for more)

Speaking Of A Cove

Mr. Sole Commissioner Whitfield,   I live in  a cove in western most Chattanooga. My back yard is woods. My front yard is woodland too. My neighbors and I had chance to voice our disagreement in 1996 to the proposed sale of a portion of the farm that dominated this cove and we did. There weren’t very many of us. One member of the group that listened to ... (click for more)

Roy Exum: The Saturday Funnies

Today’s edition of The  Saturday  Funnies is the most technical savvy, advanced, software-enhanced, and modern-day genius that I have ever delivered. I can sum it up in just one sentence: I am using a new H-P Pavilion that is the newest seventh-generation Intel Core computer and, if you want to see “real funny,” go get a new computer and try switching over your tech ... (click for more)