American Heritage Girls - Indian Camp Creek Park - 11/3/12

posted Nov 7, 2012, 7:32 PM by Jim Twellman
Last Saturday night ASEM was asked to host a star party at Indian Camp Creek
County Park for the American Heritage Girls and their families. Marv Stewart,
Chuck Simms, and myself arrived around 6:00pm and set up our telescopes near the
pavilion and playground across the field from the family campground. It is very
high ground and has pretty good horizons. The pavilion lights came on after
dark but didn't really affect our viewing because they are shaded well. The
lights on the restroom are shaded as well and on motion detectors and timers.

We were a little concerned because when we arrived there was nobody at the
campground. Marv waited there until the first car arrived and it was Pam Winter,
one of the organizers. She said they'd be arriving at 7:00 and just like
clockwork they did.

Families made the trek across the field and up the hill to where we were set up.
We estimate over 70 guests viewed many different objects including Mars,
Jupiter, M13, M15, M31, M32, M57, the Double Cluster, and NGC457. The Moon
hadn't come up by the time were packed up. Many had never looked through a
telescope before and some had been to the Astronomy Area at Broemmelsiek Park. There were lots of "wow"s heard. One boy commented that he looked through our
telescopes at 5th grade camp (at Cuivre River State Park).

Although the day started out completely overcast, the clouds cleared off nicely
just as dusk began. It was clear and cold, 39*F when we left shortly after 9:00pm.

John Sgouros

Well it was interesting. Indian Camp Creek would be a pretty good observing site. John's guess was 70 kids and adults looked through our scopes.  I had my scope on Alberio, and (later on) Jupiter when it got about 10 degrees off the horizon, it looked like a big Mars it was so red in the scud, but there were only a few groups I did this with. I also pointed out Cygnus, and let them look at the Milky Way and the Pleiades with my binoculars. They seemed to enjoy that as much as looking through the scope. I think Chuck had M13, John may have had M31---my guess. I doubt if there was anyone that didn't thank me and say they had enjoyed the experience. I'm sure it was the same for John and Chuck. A real feel-good moment.

Pam was a pleasure to work with.   Marv S