Category Archives: calendar

Calendar: club events open December

As we flip the calendar to December, there are a couple of good headline events, four astronomy club meetings, and several educational events to look forward to.

Astronaut and mountaineer Scott Parazinski is the only person ever to have both flown in space and stood on the top of Mount Everest. He’ll be at the Museum of Flight at 2 p.m. on Saturday, December 9 to talk about his experiences and his new book, The Sky Below: A True Story of Summits, Space, and Speed (Little A, 2017). Parazinski will sign copies of the book after his talk, which is free with museum admission.

If you can’t make it Saturday, you can pick up the book by clicking the link above or the book cover at left; Seattle Astronomy gets a small royalty at no cost to you when you purchase this way, and it helps support our operations. Thanks so much!

Life in Space

The Pacific Science Center’s Science in the City lecture series continues at 7 p.m. Wednesday, December 6 with a program called Life in Space. Three University of Washington astrobiologists will discuss their research—including the search for planets around other stars, characterizing how stars influence the habitability of those planets, and techniques to mix computer modeling with data analysis to determine the characteristics of potentially habitable worlds. Two of the three presenters will be familiar to Seattle Astronomy readers. Brett Morris is a PhD candidate of astronomy and astrobiology at the University of Washington and is a co-founder and co-host of the popular Astronomy on Tap Seattle events. Dr. Erika Harnett is a research associate professor and was featured on the blog and podcast this year. The “new guy” is Marshall “Moosh” Styczinski, a grad student who does research using magnetic fields to peel back the icy crust of Jupiter’s moons, looking for places that life may be found.

After viewing the documentary The Search for Life in Space, the trio will answer questions about their research and other topics addressed in the film.

Tickets to Life in Space are $5, free for Pacific Science Center members.

Astronomy club activity

Four clubs have their monthly meetings this week:

In addition, two clubs have public outreach events on Saturday. The BP Astro Kids on Bainbridge Island will make LED holiday cards during sessions at 4 p.m. and 5 p.m. at the Ritchie Observatory on Bainbridge Island. Following at 7:30 p.m. the Battle Point Astronomical Association monthly planetarium show will focus on how neutron stars make gold, and how we can tell they’re doing it. The Tacoma Astronomical Society will hold one of its public nights at 7:30 p.m. Saturday, December 9 at the Fort Steilacoom campus of Pierce College. The indoor presentation will be a viewing of the movie The Christmas Star. At both the Battle Point and Tacoma events there will be stargazing if the weather permits.

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Calendar: Watch and hear a lecture from Adler

There’s a full Moon on Saturday and Daylight Saving Time ends on Sunday. Maybe that’s why the astronomy calendar is a little sparse this week!

Are we alone in the universe?

Thousands of exoplanets have been discovered over the past two decades. Dr. Lisa Kaltenegger, Director of the Carl Sagan Institute at Cornell University and an associate professor in Cornell’s astronomy department, will discuss these discoveries during a lecture at 5:30 p.m. Friday, November 3 at Adler Planetarium in Chicago. You don’t have to be in the Windy City to attend; the lecture is part of the bi-annual Kavli Fulldome Lecture Series and will be live streamed to the Pacific Science Center’s Willard Smith Planetarium! It’s part of the center’s on-going Science in the City lecture series. Kaltenegger will explore how we can determine which exoplanets might be suitable for life and cover techniques and missions that could detect life on these faraway worlds.

Tickets are $5, and free to science center members. Space is limited, so advance tickets are recommended.

Club meetings

The Spokane Astronomical Society will meet at 7:30 p.m. Friday, November 3 at the planetarium at Spokane Falls Community College. The guest speaker had not been published as of this writing.

The Seattle Astronomical Society will offer one of its new members orientation sessions at 2 p.m. Sunday, November 5 at the Theodor Jacobsen Observatory on the University of Washington campus in Seattle. While the title calls out “new members,” prospective members are welcome as well. It’s a good time to find out what the society has to offer—and sign up!

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Calendar: spooky action

Astronomy on Tap Seattle returns for its October event this week, and local planetaria get into the Halloween spirit.

Hitchhiker’s guide to the galaxies

AOT Oct 25Astronomy on Tap Seattle will be all about galaxies when its monthly meeting convenes at 7 p.m. Wednesday, October 25 at Peddler Brewing Company in Ballard. This month’s speakers will be Dr. Jennifer Sobeck, who will discuss her research on the evolution of our galaxy in her talk “A Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy: Bumming Around the Milky Way,” and Grace Telford, whose talk “A Whirlwind Tour of Galaxies: the Tiny, the Gigantic, and Everything in Between” will zoom out and take a census of other galaxies.

Astronomy on Tap Seattle is organized by graduate students in astronomy at the University of Washington, and features informative talks, astronomy-themed trivia contests, excellent prizes, and beer. Bring your own chair to create front-row seating.

Star parties this week

There are several free public star parties on the schedule for this week.

The monthly Covington Community Park star party is set for 8 p.m. Friday, October 27 at the park on 240th in Covington. The event is a joint effort of the Seattle, Boeing Employees, and Tacoma astronomical societies. The Seattle Astronomical Society will hold star parties at 7 p.m. Saturday, October 28 at two locations: Green Lake in Seattle and Paramount Park in Shoreline. These events can be cancelled in case of inclement weather, so watch the website or social media of the Seattle Astronomical Society.

The Tacoma Astronomical Society plans one of its public nights for 7:30 p.m. Saturday, October 28 at the Fort Steilacoom campus of Pierce College. The indoor program is a Halloween special. Stargazing will happen if the skies are clear.

Spooky action in planetaria

Area planetarium operators get into the Halloween spirit with holiday-themed shows this weekend. The Washington State University planetarium in Pullman will offer a program titled Cosmic Spooks, featuring creepy illusions in the sky, disturbing constellation mythology, and a dose of real danger. Shows are at 7 p.m. Friday, October 27 and at 5 p.m. and 7 p.m. Sunday, October 29. Tickets at the door are $5, cash or check; no credit cards.

It’s the last weekend for the Haunted Night Sky show at the Pierce College Science Dome. The tour to spooky places in the universe is geared toward kids ages 3–12. Showtimes are 12:30 p.m. and 2 p.m. on Saturday, October 28. Adults get in for free but kids have to pay $6. Tickets are available in advance online.

Scout for future events on the Seattle Astronomy calendar.

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Calendar: Six NW astro-club meetings this week

Orbit Around October continues at the Museum of Flight, and there are a slew of astronomy club meetings on the calendar for this week.

Orbit

Orbit Around OctoberThe Museum of Flight continues its spacey month with a visit to Ceres at 2 p.m. Saturday, October 21. Johns Hopkins University Applied Physics Lab participating scientist Debra Buczkowski will talk about the discoveries of NASA’s Dawn mission to the giant asteroid Vesta and dwarf planet Ceres. Buczkowski will discuss what we learned about Vesta and Ceres, and how this helps us understand the formation of bodies in the asteroid belt. Free with museum admission.

Star party in Oak Harbor

The Island County Astronomical Society plans its monthly star party in Fort Nugent Park for around dusk on Friday, October 20.

Haunted night sky

The popular planetarium show Haunted Night Sky continues on Saturdays through October at the Pierce College Science Dome. Show times for October 21 are 12:30 p.m. and 2 p.m., and the program runs about 45 minutes. The show is designed for kids ages 3–12. Tickets are $6 for children, free for adults, and are available online.

Astronomy club meetings

There are half a dozen astronomy club meetings in the region this week:

Mark your calendar

The next Astronomy on Tap Seattle event is set for 7 p.m. Wednesday, October 25 at Peddler Brewing Company in Ballard. The theme will be “A Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxies” and the evening will feature talks about galaxy types, formation, and evolution. Plus beer and astronomy trivia.

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Calendar: Orbit around October

A month of space and astronomy events are on the calendar at the Museum of Flight, with three events kicking it all off this week.

Orbit Around October

Orbit Around OctoberThe museum’s space month is dubbed Orbit Around October, with new events on Saturdays during the month.

It all starts off on October 5 with Astronomy Night during the museum’s monthly Free First Thursday. There’s no admission charge between 5 p.m. and 9 p.m. Area astronomy clubs will be on hand with telescopes and information, and there will be other educational activities throughout the evening.

The museum also offers a couple of events on Saturday, October 7. A 2 p.m. presentation called “21st Century Communities in Space: The Cultural Details in Living Away From Earth” will celebrate the 60th anniversary of Sputnik, and then look forward to the future when we’ve colonized the Moon and Mars and are creating communities in space. What sort of culture will be there?

Then at 5:30 p.m. join in on a reception, lecture, and book signing with space writer Leonard David. David’s book Mars: Our Future on the Red Planet (National Geographic, 2016) is a companion to the recent Mars miniseries produced by the National Geographic Channel. Tickets to this event are $25, $20 for museum members, and must be purchased online by October 3.

Haunted Night Sky

The Pierce College Science Dome brings back the popular planetarium show Haunted Night Sky on Saturdays during October. The show, geared for kids aged 3-12, guides viewers to use their imaginations to find creatures in the night sky, build a Frankenstein satellite, and take a tour of the Sea of Serpents on the Moon, the Witch’s Head nebula, and other spooky places in the universe. Showtimes are 12:30 p.m. and 2 p.m. each Saturday, and it runs about 45 minutes. Tickets are $6 for kids—adults are free—and are available in advance online.

Astronomy clubs

A quick rundown of the regional astronomy club meetings this week:

Mark your calendar

You can scout out future astronomy events by visiting our calendar page.


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Calendar: What the heck is polarimetry?

The monthly gathering of Astronomy on Tap Seattle and a variety of star parties highlight this week’s calendar.

AOT

AOT Sept 27My Webster’s Ninth New Collegiate Dictionary defines polarimeter as “an instrument for determining the amount of polarization of light or the proportion of polarized light in a partially polarized ray.” I still don’t know what that means or why astronomers might be into polarimetry, but we’ll find out at 8 p.m. Wednesday, September 27 when Astronomy on Tap Seattle meets at Peddler Brewing Company in Ballard.

The guest speakers are both UW postdocs: Dr. Jamie Lomax will discuss her research using polarimetry to detect the almost-invisible material around stars, and Dr. Kim Bott will explain how she uses polarimetry to hunt for signs of habitable worlds.

Astronomy on Tap Seattle is organized by graduate students in astronomy at the University of Washington. The evening’s festivities include astronomy-themed trivia and fabulous prizes. It’s free, but buy beer. Bring your own chair to create custom front-row seating.

Star parties

Several star parties are on the calendar for the weekend. The Covington Community Park Star Party is scheduled for 9 p.m. Friday, September 29 at the park. The party is sponsored by Covington Parks and Recreation with support from the Seattle, Tacoma, and Boeing Employees astronomical societies.

The Seattle Astronomical Society plans its free monthly public star parties for 8 p.m. Saturday, September 30 at two locations: Green Lake in Seattle and Paramount Park in Shoreline.

Planetarium

The WSU Planetarium in Pullman offers a new program this weekend, “Astronomy 101.” The show runs at 7 p.m. Friday, September 29 and repeats at 5 p.m. Sunday, October 1. Tickets are $5 at the door, cash or check; no credit cards.

Mark your calendar

The Museum of Flight will observe Astronomy Night next Thursday, October 5 beginning at 5 p.m. Astronomy clubs from the area will be on hand with telescopes and information. It’s part of the museum’s free first Thursday offerings.

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Calendar: TJO wraps open houses for the season

A handful of astronomy club meetings and the final open house of the year at the Theodor Jacobsen Observatory are the highlights of this week’s astronomy calendar.

TJO

Theodor Jacobsen ObservatoryThe University of Washington hosts open houses at the Theodor Jacobsen Observatory on the first and third Wednesdays of each month from April through September. The open house at 8 p.m. this Wednesday, September 20, will be the last for 2017.

UW students give talks at the open houses. We haven’t been plugging these much this year because the free talks have been filled well in advance; the talks are free, but reservations are needed, as the classroom can accommodate just 45 people. Volunteers from the Seattle Astronomical Society staff the dome and its vintage telescope. There are also typically telescopes on hand outside for those who don’t get a chance to get inside.

Astronomy clubs

A quick rundown of the regional astronomy club meetings this week:

Mark your calendars

One of our favorite monthly events is coming up next week: Astronomy on Tap Seattle will meet at 8 p.m. Wednesday, September 27 at Peddler Brewing in Ballard. The topic will be “What the Heck is Polarimetry?”, and the speakers will be Dr. Jamie Lomax, who will talk about her research on detecting the almost-invisible material around stars, and Dr. Kim Bott, who uses polarimetry to hunt for signs of habitable worlds.

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