photo by Gus Romano

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About this event:

Sponsored by Harwich Conservation Trust, join amateur astronomer and Harwich resident, Michael Payne, for a free interpretive stargazing night from 7:00-8:00 p.m. Michael will share observation tips as well as point out planets and constellations of note.

We will be locating and appreciating the bright constellations and brilliant stars of winter. The constellations will include Orion, Gemini, Taurus, the Big and Little Dog, Perseus, and Cassiopeia. The bright stars will include Sirius (the brightest star in the sky) Procyon, Rigel, Betelgeuse, Castor, and Pollux.

Other objects we will observe will include the Milky Way, the Pleiades (an iconic open star cluster), Orion’s belt (a great stellar nursery of dust and gas), and the Andromeda Galaxy (the most distant object in the night sky visible to the naked eye). In the course of the session we will learn how to become oriented to the night sky by finding the North Star as well as learning some of the social and cultural history of the constellations. Finally, at the beginning of our session we should be able to observe the planet Venus descending in the west.

It’s cold out there, so please dress accordingly. The forecast calls for a relatively windless night, so that will be helpful, but do wear plenty of warm layers. If you have a flashlight, bring it along. We will have some red cellophane to place over some flashlights, which helps preserve our night vision while still providing enough light to see the constellation map.

Cost:
This event is free, but space is limited, so advance reservation is required.
 
Location:
Destination details and driving directions are sent with a reservation confirmation email.
Time: 7:00 – 8:00 p.m.
Day/date: Wednesday, January 22nd  
Rain or clouds cancel the event.