Klondike Park - Saturday October 17, 2009

posted Oct 18, 2009, 2:04 PM by Jim Twellman

The last event with the St Charles County Parks for this year took place at Klondike Park.  This year, daytime festivities were added as well.  ASEM volunteers set up shop at the Art Fair there featuring members' astrophotography and some fun kids astro art.  Volunteers included Jim Stegeman, Annette Rolls, Marv and Barb Stewart, Amy White, plus Jim and Yvonne Roe and grandkids.   The skies were cloudy in the afternoon, so the solar scopes did not come out to play.

The evening's events were in support of a full campground.  The clouds parted around sundown (6:20 pm), and the skies turned out to be great. Approximately 55 guests plus club members showed up.  Those bringing scopes included Jim Roe, John Sgouros, Marv Stewart, Brad Griffith, Jim Stegeman, Amy White, and myself of ASEM, and Tom Keutzer of SLAS.   It was fairly cold, with temps in the lower 40's and high humidity.   One group of campers came by three times, going back to camp to warm up in-between.  Most scope operators had their best cold weather gear on. 

Views given to the public included Jupiter, Star Clusters (M13, M15, the Double Cluster, M22), Double stars (Gamma Andromeda, Mizar, Albireo), nebulae ( M57, M27, the Veil), and galaxies (M31, M32).   M31 was not showing a dust lane with any degree of clarity, due no doubt to the amount of moisture in the air.   Views near the zenith were the best by far.

The crowd thinned out by 9:30, and the dew came with a vengeance shortly thereafter.  No outlets here for blow dryers, and resistance was futile.  By the time I packed my scope, the roof of my car was full of frost and the temp had dropped to 36 degrees.

Jim Twellman

John Sgouros, Jim Roe, and Brad Griffith ready for action.

Marv describing the fish that got away to Jim Stegeman!