Winter Solstice Party at R-Park

Winter Solstice Party at R-Park

December 21st, the Winter Solstice, is an astronomical phenomenon marking the shortest day and the longest night of the year when, often considered the “extreme of winter.” Worldwide, interpretation of the event varies across cultures. Many come together to recognize rebirth involving holidays, festivals, gatherings, rituals, and more.

In Jackson Hole, annual festivities are held at Rendezvous Park. Bring your family and friends anytime between from 5–8 pm. It will be a magical night not to miss! Please RSVP to Park Director Elisabeth Rohrbach at elisabeth@rpark.org or (307) 733-3913.

This year, Cathedral Voices Choir will sing carols around a bonfire and Wyoming Stargazing will show you the planets up close with their telescopes. Jackson Hole Public Art will create art installations with fire that provide light and warmth. There will also be warm drinks, chili, and of course sledding!

As a 501(c)3 nonprofit, RLC’s work is made possible thanks to support and donations. It would be a pleasure to share more information about our work. Please contact us with any questions.

Donations can be made by check and sent via USPS to PO Box 6430 | Jackson, WY 83002 or by credit card online. For up-to-date information visit our blog and sign-up for our monthly eNewsletter.

winter-soltice

Join Us for a Party with the Perseids

Perseid Meteor Shower

Both town and county voted in our revised LDRs! We’re now one step closer to becoming a Dark Sky Certified community! Look for a future blog post to see what that means and what the next steps are.

But in the meantime, it’s time for a celebration!

Party with the Perseids!

When: Thursday, August 11th, 8pm – late
Where: Rendezvous Park (R-Park)

Rendezvous Land Conservancy and Wyoming Stargazing are teaming up this August to offer you an extraordinary free public event filled with great food, drinks, live music, games, and of course stargazing. Come on out to R-Park for some fun, family-friendly time and stick around for one of the best meteor showers of the year…the Perseids!

Pica’s will be providing chips, salsa, guacamole, quesadillas, and half-priced margaritas!

Elevated Grounds will be providing hot chocolate and coffee!

Snake River Brewery will be there too with their classic beers!

Elevated Grounds
Pica's Mexican Taqueria
Snake River Brewery

We’ll have Rob and Tasha to serenade you as the sun goes down and plenty of yard games to pass the time. As the stars come out we’ll have several telescopes set up around R-Park to show you the cloud bands of Jupiter, the rings of Saturn, and possibly even the polar ice caps of Mars. We’ll also show you incredible details on the waxing gibbous moon. Later on we’ll show you star clusters, nebulae, and of course a few galaxies. We should begin seeing the first meteors of the evening as the sky darkens at about 9pm. We’ll see more meteors as the evening progresses. And if you stick around until after the Moon sets at about 12:30am, then the real Perseid Meteor shower begins and it’s one of the best meteor showers of the year.

About This Year’s Perseid Meteor Shower

This year, even with the Moon, we should be able to see about 1 meteor/min. Most of them will appear to radiate from the NE part of the sky near the constellation Perseus, but others will appear in other parts of the sky. This meteor shower, like all meteor shows, is produced by the Earth moving through a debris field in space left there by a comet. In this case, it’s comet Swift-Tuttle that was discovered in 1862.

Please bring a lawn chair and/or blanket to help you enjoy the evening, the food, the drinks, the games, and the meteors!

No need to RSVP – Just show up and join in on the fun!

Solar Astronomy at Elevated Grounds

Elevated grounds logoWyoming Stargazing Logo
Beginning this Thursday, and every Thursday for the rest of the Summer, from 12:45-2:45pm Wyoming Stargazing will be offering FREE Solar Astronomy Programs out in front of Elevated Grounds coffee shop near the Aspen’s Market in Wilson. Come safely check out solar flares, sunspots, and other features on the Sun through our solar telescopes. You can even snap a picture of these incredible features through our telescope using your smartphone. Elevated Grounds will be having Happy Hour during that time and will be offering up some of their new drinks like Apollo’s Chariot. Don’t miss out!

Solar Astronomy at Children’s Museum this Sunday

This Sunday, March 1st, at 11am, Wyoming Stargazing will be offering a free solar astronomy program outside the Jackson Hole Children’s Museum. Please join us to check out sunspots and solar flares through our high tech solar telescopes.

AmazonSmile

Hello Fellow Supporters of Wyoming Stargazing!

Financially supporting Wyoming Stargazing just got even easier and free!

All you have to do is make all your future Amazon.com purchases from AmazonSmile.  It’s the same Amazon.com that you know and love, but each time you make a purchase from AmazonSmile, Amazon will give Wyoming Stargazing %0.5 of the total purchase amount.  I know that doesn’t sound like much, but it is adds up fast.  

Just click on the following link to get started with supporting Wyoming Stargazing though Smile.Amazon.com: http://smile.amazon.com/ch/46-3183809 

Thanks and Clear Skies!

Save Our Night Skies Campaign Kick-off Event

Preserving the Night Skies of Jackson HoleWyoming Stargazing is hosting a kick-off event for the Save Our Night Skies Campaign on Thursday, February 19th, beginning at 5:30pm at the Center for the Arts.  This event is part of a larger art show at the Center that is being co-sponsored by the Center of Wonder and Wyoming Stargazing. This Upyard Art Show will highlight the artwork of about a dozen local artists whose work depicts our Upyard, as opposed to our backyard, during the day time and night.  

We are also going to have several local artists, including preschool kids from the Children’s Learning Center and Carrie Wild, each paint a Dobsonian telescopes with either a 6″ and 8″ primary mirror.  Those fully-functional telescopes will be auctioned off with a silent auction during the Opening Night of the Upyard Art Show, also on Thursday, February 19th. The total auction price of each telescope will be split 50/50 between the artists and Wyoming Stargazing.

We’ll also have our Board Member Mike Cavaroc there to show and talk about his documentary film about the night skies over Jackson.  There will be a table with plenty of information about light pollution in Jackson and about how you can get involved with our efforts to reduce it.

After the telescope auction, as long as the weather cooperates, we’ll go outside for some stargazing.

The Center of Wonder and Wyoming Stargazing will be providing hors d’oeuvres and wine.  So, please join us for some food and drink, some amazing artwork, a chance to bid on a beautiful telescope, and to view the night sky through our new telescope with a 20″ primary mirror!  No need to RSVP.

Special Bill Nye Stargazing Program

Weather permitting, Wyoming Stargazing will be offering a free public stargazing program following Bill Nye’s presentation at the Center for the Arts this Thursday, February 5th, from 8pm-9:30pm.

We’ll be on the pathway that goes through the field to the south of the Center. Let’s hope for clear skies!!!

Orion and Comet Lovejoy by Mike Cavaroc Gets APOD

I recently took this photo of Orion and Comet Lovejoy C/2014 Q2 in the night sky and shortly thereafter, was awarded Astronomy Photo Of the Day (APOD) run by NASA! Out of millions of photos submitted from around the world, this one was chosen and published relatively quickly, I’m assuming due to its timeliness. See the original post here: http://apod.nasa.gov/apod/ap150114.html

I took the image on the first clear night we had had in Jackson Hole in weeks. I was trying to get a close-up shot of the comet when I noticed its proximity to Orion. I zoomed out and noticed that the composition made it look like Orion was shooting Comet Lovejoy from his bow (his more widely-accepted shield had been put down temporarily for the sake of this photo). I began capturing many more images to stack together to create this image.

Visible in the image are nearly all of Orion’s wonders, including the Orion Nebula, Barnard’s Loop, the Horsehead Nebula, the Flame Nebula, and even the Rosette Nebula to the left, part of the Monoceros constellation.

Interested in learning how to capture an image like this? Read Pixpa.com’s A Beginner’s Guide to Astrophotography article to find out how!

2017 Total Solar Eclipse in Jackson Hole

If you haven’t already heard the word on the street, starting at about 10:16am directly above Jackson, Wyoming on Monday, August 21st 2017 we’re going to have a total solar eclipse. I know it’s still two and a half years away, but that hasn’t stopped people from all over the world from booking hotels in Jackson for that week. I’ve personally received inquiries from England, Belgium, and the Netherlands, not to mention another dozen or so from folks all over the US. So, if you’re planning on coming to Jackson for the eclipse book your hotel soon because they are filling up fast!

Although there are lost of places around the continental US from which to view the eclipse, Jackson is poised to be one of the best. I mean, come on, where else can you go to see a total solar eclipse with a bald eagle flying over head, bison grazing in the foreground, 13,000 ft peaks behind you, grizzly bear, moose, and elk frolicking off to the side, and the howl of a wolf in the distance. Well, maybe not all of those critters at the same moment, but you get the idea.

The charismatic mega fauna aside, seeing the total solar eclipse is really the once in a lifetime opportunity. To help you out, Wyoming Stargazing has set up a new page on our website with all the information you’ll need to keep track of. The URL for that page is:

http://www.wyomingstargazing.org/2017-solar-eclipse/

It’s under our Programs link in the main menu on the homepage.

We hope to see you in Jackson on August 2017!

Clear Skies,

Samuel

Free Stargazing Has Moved to the Center for the Arts

We’re excited to announce that our free, public stargazing events have moved to the Center for the Arts located in downtown Jackson. This move allows us to reach more people thanks to a more convenient location to both locals and tourists, as well as receiving support from the Center for the Arts itself.

In addition, this move also helps us to educate people on the threats that light pollution pose, which you will be hearing about much more from us as Wyoming Stargazing takes a more active stance in helping Jackson reclaim its night skies. To see what’s at stake, you can watch a short film on the subject on this blog post.

We’ll be meeting on the south side of the building (facing Snow King) on the lawn for the following dates throughout the winter:

  • December: 12th and 26th
  • January: 9th and 23rd
  • February: 13th and 27th
  • March: 13th and 27th
  • April: 10th and 24th

Friday Astronomy Presentation

Come and find out why Jackson should build a public observatory!

University of Wyoming Astronomer and Director of the Jelm Mountain Observatory, Dr. Chip Kobulnicky, will present a program entitled:

“Wyoming’s Skies: A Gateway to Life, the Universe, and Everything”.

In this pictorial presentation, Dr.Chip Kobulnicky will describe how backyard enthusiasts
can contribute to modern astronomy research while bringing the excitement of real science to any hometown or school. Arguably the oldest of the sciences, astronomy is humanity’s quest to understand what exists in the universe, how it works, and how the universe affects life here on Earth. Remarkably, astronomy is also the most accessible of the sciences, especially here in Wyoming.

This presentation is part of the monthly Jackson Hole Astronomy Club meeting. Coffee and light refreshments will be served. The event is free and open to the public. No need to RSVP.

en_USEnglish