May 13, 2004

As both the President and Vice President were unable to attend, the meeting was called to order by Linda Sensenig at 7:40. There were 25 people in attendance. New members and guests introduced themselves. The Secretary’s Minutes were available with the agenda and calendar of upcoming events. Linda reported a balance of $$$$. She noted that Ron Kunkel’s mother-in-law passed away and informed us that an article about her father, Clarence, will be in next Friday’s paper.

Sky Report: Venus, Mars, Saturn and Jupiter are readily visible at sunset. Comet C/2001 Q4 (NEAR) is now visible, and C/2002 T7 (LINEAR) will be visible by the end of the month. Between 9:30 and 9:38 tonight, the International Space Station will pass directly by Jupiter.

Old Business: The club’s Comet/Star Party was held on April 9 at the Flying Field. On April 15, Ron and Barb attended the talk "Planetary Geology – Mars and Beyond" presented by Dr. Trilling at Bryn Mawr College. The Northeast Astronomy Forum (NEAF) was held April 17 and 18. Several club members attended. The speakers were top notch this year. There was a Board Meeting on April 22. The Earth Day Celebration was rained out this year. Due to some deaths in the organizing committee, it is possible that it won’t be held next year. The Comet Watch was held at the Berks Heritage Center on May 7. It was too hazy to see the comet, but we were able to observe the planets and a transit of Io across Jupiter.

Upcoming Events and New Business: Barb announced that she and Michel will be presenting a program on the Night Sky Network at Member’s Night in June. There will be another comet watch at the Heritage Center on May 14 (r.d. 15) at 7:00. The Mason-Dixon Star Party is May 20-24 at Codorus State Park. A comet watch will be held at the Blue Marsh Dry Brooks Area on June 4 (r.d. 5), starting at 8:00 p.m. There is also a Venus Transit Watch scheduled for June 8 at the Flying Field at sunrise. The transit will already be in progress. As the Flying Field is not public property this is a club function, but invited guests are welcome. Our next meeting will be June 10, and it is Member’s Night – volunteers are needed for programs! There will be another comet watch at the Heritage Center on June 11 (r.d. 12). The Laurel Highlands Star Cruise (star party) is June 14 through 20 at the Pinehill Campground near Hazelton, WV. The next Board Meeting will be June 24 at 6:30 pm at Barb Geigle’s home. We will be having a cookout – Barb will supply burgers, everyone else is to bring a covered dish. The Black Forest Star Party, September 10 – 12, will be held at Cherry Springs State Park. Barb noted that over 200 of the total 450 available registrations have already been filled.

Our speaker was Inge Heyer from the Space Telescope Science Institute. Her program was "Mars: The New but Not Final Frontier".

Respectfully submitted,

Barbara Geigle, Secretary


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