The first meeting of the new Victoria Centre Council was held December 5 at the Astronomy Department lounge in the Elliott Building on the UVic campus. After the requisite reports were given, Council’s attention was drawn to what will be our next big challenge: our hosting of the 2014 National RASC General Assembly, in celebration of the Centennial year of Victoria Centre. The committee charged with organizing the event, to be held at the University of Victoria, is led by Paul Schumacher, Lauri Roche, and Mark Bohlman. Interested in helping? Contact any of the three.

Our council is mindful, too, that our other important projects must not suffer on account of attention the GA, mainly public outreach, schools, and light pollution and abatement. The former, a real jewel in our crown, remains headed-up by Sid Sidhu, Lauri, and Sherry Buttnor, who will continue to rely on our volunteers (and who will be calling YOU). The latter remains in the hands of Mark Bohlman and Dorothy Paul.

Not least are the Centre’s observing activities, both at the Victoria Centre Observatory (VCO) and elsewhere. Don’t forget that a MIC will likely be at the VCO on most even-marginally clear nights, and become an “active observer” if you are not. In addition to the scopes in the observatory, there is usually a 20” Dob at the VCO available for use! Bill Weir fills the newly created position of Observing Chair, and is always willing to share his considerable knowledge with those interested in upgrading their skills.

Diane Bell was appointed by Council to fill the Skynews Editor position just vacated by Malcolm Scrimger. Thanks to Diane. And lastly, don’t forget to make use of our excellent website. Quick perusals of other Centre websites around the land show ours to be one of the best.

Nelson Walker

President’s Message – December 2012