Nockamixon Starwatch, February 26, 2015


When I arrived at Nockamixon State Park visitor center, the moon was just slightly visible through some high haze. We had a nice group of about 18 kids and their parents attending. I talked and did a demo on how our Earth’s tilt in it’s yearly orbit makes our seasons. Then we talked about telescopes and did our demo with our portable “optics lab”. The kids had fun playing with the lenses and bringing images into focus. Next up was a handout on the winter hexagon. Beth, the Environmental Education Specialist had a nice constellation flashlight projector for the kids to use in the last 15 minutes. I went out at that point and was surprised to see Jupiter, Sirius and the Moon looking pretty darn good! Since I already had my 80mm set up inside on the portamount, it was easy to take it outside and get on the Moon. The kids had a good eyeful of the Moon, then we went to Jupiter where they saw the moons and cloud bands. They got a chance to see the real winter hexagon. The final treat of the evening was a nice halo around the Moon. All in all it worked out just fine and a good time was had by all. The kids were a great group. – Dwight Dulsky

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