August 2017

Asterisms: The Teaspoon and The Lemon in Sagittarius

Original article appears in GuideStar August, 2017.

by Steve Goldberg
Asterism: a grouping of stars that form a recognizable pattern.
Constellation: Sagittarius  
Right Ascension: 19 h, 04 m
Declination: -24º 44’
Magnitude:  Naked eye
Size: 8o x 4o

TheLemon.PNGIn the constellation Sagittarius, the Teapot, there are two asterisms that share common stars: The Lemon and The Spoon. These asterisms comprise the line of stars to the “upper left” of the Teapot, attached to the “handle” of the Teapot.

The “Lemon” is thSagittarius.PNGe lower 3 stars: Pi π, Omicron ο and Xi ξ. 

TheTeaspoon.PNGThe “Spoon” includes the “Lemon” with 2 additional stars at the top. Starting with the “highest star”, they are: Rho ρ, 43 Sgr, Pi π, Omicron ο and Xi ξ.
Since the Teapot’s spout is spewing steam or hot water creating the Milky Way, you need a Teaspoon to put the Lemon in your tea.


AL Corner: Musings from the HAS Astronomical League Coordinator

Original article appears in GuideStar June, 2017.

by Doug McCormick
ALCOR_Doug.pngGreetings from your HAS Astronomical League Coordinator (ALCOR), and welcome to the first segment of what I intend to be a regular update on the Astronomical League (AL). In future articles, I’ll be relating news from the League and discussing the various benefits of belonging to a member organization of the AL. In addition, I’ll discuss the Astronomical League Observing Programs and recognize HAS members that have completed them.

If you’ve attended one of our meetings in the last couple of years, you’ve likely heard me say that one of the greatest benefits of league membership is the opportunity to participate in the League’s numerous observing programs. These programs are very popular with the membership and the astronomical community across the country. In future segments, I’m going to reach back and recognize past awardees, but for now, here are the HAS League awards for the first quarter of 2017:

  • Rene Gedaly, Globular Cluster Award (Visual)
  • Stephen Jones, Deep Sky Binocular Club

Congratulations to Rene and Stephen, and my apologies to James King who would have received an award in the first quarter if our communications were better. We can look forward to Jim’s award soon. If you’re going to pursue one of the League programs, be sure to check the requirements for that program on the League’s website,, to make sure you get off to a good start. For more information regarding the League, the League Observing Programs or to submit your observations for your award, you can email me at [email protected]. I look forward to hearing from you, and keep turning those eyes and cameras to the sky.

HAS in the News!

HAS was invited to record a podcast and record a Facebook Live session at the KPRC studio with meteorologist Justin Stapleton.

Here’s the Facebook Live recording:

President's Letter

Original article appears in GuideStar June, 2017.

by Rene S Gedaly

Remarks made at the 2017 TSP awards

The Texas Star Party Omega Centauri Award is all about Outreach—and Outreach is fun.

I'm not so sure that's how most of us first think about Outreach. It wouldn't be so hard to get folks to volunteer if it were.

Scary. Scary's more like it.

See if you can relate: 

President's Letter

Original article appears in GuideStar August, 2017.

by Rene S Gedaly

Where will you be for the Great American Eclipse?

Many of our members will be stationed all along the center line from Oregon to South Carolina. Will you be closer to home August 21? Get to the Houston Museum of Natural Science. They’ll be having an eclipse viewing. Details in this GuideStar.

HAS SIGs. There's one for you

See Eclipse Live on Slooh

Slooh Livestreams Coast-to-Coast Coverage of the Transcontinental Solar Eclipse
Monday August 21, 2017

Courtesy of Slooh,

Visit to snap and share your own photos from this live event, and interact with our hosts and guests, and personally control Slooh’s telescopes.

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HAS has begun using RainedOut, a text message service, to communicate late-breaking news about events. Click here to learn more and subscribe!

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