June 12, 2008

    Dave Brown called the meeting to order with 20 in attendance.  Our club star watch on May 24 was well attended, once we were able to get onto the Flying Field.  The flying club had changed the locks and forgot to notify us. We will have another club star watch on July 26 at dusk at the Flying Field.

    Barb reported on the Cherry Springs Star Party which had two good nights of viewing. She also noted that she had an encounter with a pot hole that resulted in two flat tires, one bent wheel and one broken wheel.

    Gene Salvatore advised that if you want to see a PowerPoint on almost any topic, just type the topic along with ppt into your search browser. There are lots of programs available.

    Dave noted that he would like to schedule a program at French Creek Park, possibly for July 12. However, this date conflicts with the LVAAS annual picnic.  Several of our members who usually bring telescopes to events also belong to LVAAS.  Dave will contact the Park to schedule a date for August.

    Our July meeting will be Member’s Night. Barb and Barry Shupp have volunteered to give short programs. Anyone else interested in participating should contact Dave or Gene Salvatore.  As Dave’s son, Dan, is getting married that week, Dave won’t be at the meeting. He will contact Bret to see if he can run the meeting; if not, Barb will do it.

    August will be our annual picnic at Dave’s farm.  It will be held on our regular meeting date of August 7 at 6:00 PM.  Everyone is invited to bring a covered dish. Dave will provide fresh corn on the cob.

    We will have a public star watch at Blue Marsh Lake on August 9 at dusk.

    NASA News – Phoenix landed safely on Mars and as of today was able to load its oven with Martian soil to be heated and analyzed.  Barb noted that she hasn’t heard anything from the Night Sky Network about upcoming teleconferences.

    Dave and Dan Brown are planning a trip to the Kennedy Space Center to watch a shuttle launch in December. They are trying to obtain VIP passes through their congressman so they can watch it from the closest area.

    Tim Siminski reported that he has a 7mm Nagler eyepiece for sale for $80. It is an old style eyepiece, but is in excellent condition.

    Linda Sensenig reported a balance of $$$$ plus the CD. She noted that if we decide to withdraw from the Astronomical League, we would no longer be able to buy the group liability policy from them, and would have to get coverage locally. This would probably cost more than what we are paying now.

    Our speaker, David Graff, announced that a children’s museum is being planned. Palmer Chocolates, in West Reading, has donated a building and a Board is starting to make plans. They would like to have science exhibits and would like input from our club for an astronomy exhibit with hands-on items designed for young children. Dave, Barb and Angelo volunteered to attend a Board meeting, which are held at Penn State Berks.

     It was announced that Gene is stepping down as Program Coordinator. Anyone willing to help out with arranging speakers should contact Gene or Dave.

It was also announced that Melody needs articles for the summer Pegasus by the end of June.

Tonight’s program by David Graff was about Dark Energy.

 Respectfully submitted

Barbara Geigle, Secretary


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