by Amelia Goldberg
The HAS Women’s SIG hands-on telescope and observing lab held at the Dark Site after the picnic was a HUGE success! We had 22 female members RSVP for the event.
Rene started things rolling by talking about the three different kinds of telescopes we had on hand: refractor, Schmidt-Cassegrain, and Dobsonian reflector. We had a sort of telescope “petting zoo” where the women learned how to use the telescopes and find things on their own.
Rene pointed out some bight deep sky objects with a green laser and then gave the laser to Jayne Lambert to do a constellation tour along with an interesting mythology lesson. Rene went on to teach Andrea Kowalczyk planisphere skills so she could then show the other women how to use them. Since our laser was hard to see, Joe Khalaf used his laser to point out objects in the sky and I would find them in my telescope for the women to observe. Don Selle also took a small group to work with. There were several small manageable groups learning different things and everyone was helping each other out. Rene had reserved the f/5 telescope in the main observatory building and the women were also able to use that scope to find objects in the sky. Steve Goldberg was our photographer for the event.
It was a wonderful evening and everyone had a great time.