HI RASCals –
Our annual star party is coming up this week, and I urge you to support it. Event details
1. It is unique. It is literally an “urban star party” (“semi-urban?”)
2. It’s close. It’s twenty minutes from Victoria.
3. It’s low key (it is organized by a tiny committee which barely knows who its own members are).
4. The weather provides plenty of opportunity for excitement. Up to thirty knots of wind has been recorded on the telescope field.
5. Good speakers, poetry possibly excluded. Good workshops.
6. Lots of prizes. Lots of prizes for the kids.
7. It’s free (although some pressure for donations might be applied by the “committee” until the cost of the privies is covered).
8. Camping, and it too is free. Many of the campers will be local families.
9. A good turnout by the locals who are eager to look through your scope.
10. It is appreciated as a community event by the community of Metchosin.
11. There is a good restaurant a five minute walk away, plus pizza.
It is easy to find things to criticize about our star party. It isn’t dark. The weather is unpredictable. It isn’t advertised nationally. But I have been to every one of our star parties since 2005 (lots of members have been to many more), and I have also been to the Oregon Star Party (many times), Merritt Star Quest, the Golden State Star Party, and Mt. Kobau. None of these is a community star party. None of these is twenty minutes from my house. None of these has pizza nearby. And as to darkness …. I have logged many hundreds of deep sky objects from the Metchosin field. It is certainly as dark as it needs to be to do any list of double stars, or the Messier list, or the Finest NGC list, or even the H-400 list, all of which you are doubtless working on.
Come and join us at what may be the only star party in Canada which is twenty minutes from your front door.