B.C.A.A.S. General Meeting Minutes

September 12, 2002

The meeting was called to order by President Barry Shupp at 7:35 p.m. with 32 attendees. Treasurer Linda Sensenig reported a balance of $7,795.90. She is collecting money for "Astronomy" and "Sky and Telescope" subscriptions, as well and for the wall calendars. She reserved a room for the 30th Anniversary Banquet at Chef Alan’s for October 18, 2003, but needed a time. It was agreed that the banquet should start at 7:00 PM.

Barry thanked Dave Brown for the hayride at the August picnic at his farm. During the observing after dark an iridium flare, the International Space Station, and numerous Perseid meteors were seen. Ron Kunkel reviewed his and Ryan’s trip to Stellafane, where the weather was dry for a change. He noted that all the astronomy clubs in attendance would be receiving a variable star catalog on CD. The Black Forest Star Party at Cherry Springs State Park was also discussed. Quite a few members had attended and had great viewing on Friday night and an incredible aurora on Saturday night. Ron showed some aurora photos. Larry Citro passed around some photos he had taken to Cherry Springs to display.

For his sky report, Dave Brown noted that with autumn weather starting, it is a great time to get out and observe, as there is less humidity and cooler, clearer skies. Saturn is now rising around midnight and Jupiter a bit later. The Andromeda galaxy and Double Cluster in Perseus are both good targets.

There will be a Board Meeting on Thursday, September 26 at 7 PM at Paul Becker’s home. On September 27, there will be a public starwatch at Dry Brooks Day Use area at Blue Marsh starting at 6 PM. Also, L.V.A.A.S. will be hosting their annual Megameet at Pulpit Rock on October 4-6. Stella Della, hosted by B.M.A.A. is also that weekend. We will also have a public starwatch at the Berks County Heritage Center on October 11 beginning at dusk, with a rain date of October 12. As the theme for this year’s Discover Your Museum Day is trains, there will be no B.C.A.A.S. participation. It was brought up that next year’s Mason Dixon Star Party is being moved to Codorus State Park near Hanover, PA where skies should be darker.

As Dr. Robert Stencel is coming in from Colorado for our October meeting, it was suggested that we do everything possible to have a large audience for him. Ryan Hannahoe stated that L.V.A.A.S. was invited and an article was in their newsletter. He has also invited the Harrisburg Astronomy Club, as well as a club near Franklin and Marshall College. It was agreed that Linda would send email reminders to our members, with postcards going to those who do not have email. Dave Brown is going to contact WEEU, and Barry Shupp will notify the local papers. Also, local schools are going to be contacted.

Our guest speaker was Gary Becker, curator of the Allentown School District Planetarium. He gave a very interesting talk on Chaco astronomy, with pictures of the pueblo ruins and numerous details indicating astronomical awareness.

The meeting was adjourned at 9:30 p.m.

Respectfully submitted,

Barbara Geigle, Secretary


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