Auburn Astronomical Society E-Newsletter
January, 2004

In this Issue

January Events Saturn Gaze 
December Star Party New AAS Domain Name
2004 Membership Dues    

January Events

Saturn Gaze: Saturday, January 3, W.A. Gayle Planetarium.  (See details below)

January Meeting:  Because of the conflict with the New Year holiday weekend, we’ll hold our January meeting on the second Friday of the new year, January 9, at the usual location of room 215 of the Aerospace Engineering building, at 8:00 PM.  Bring your new astro-toys that Santa left for you for the  “Show & Tell” segment of our meeting.

Star Party: Saturday January 24, at Cliff Hill’s farm.

Saturn Gaze
Mackall W. Acheson III

On Saturday night, January 3, 2004, we are going to have a special event at the W. A. Gayle Planetarium, to observe Saturn.  Saturn is going to be as closer to the Earth than it has been for the past 30 Years, and as close as it will be for the next 30 Years.

We will have a number of telescopes set up outside the planetarium for the public to view through. The agenda is as follows:

6:00 PM Doors Open
6:30 PM Telescope Clinic
7:00 PM Planetarium Program (entitled Ring World)
8:00 PM Telescopic Viewing of Saturn

The following people have volunteered to have their telescopes set up outside the planetarium for the public:

  • Mack Acheson 
  • Jim McLaughlin 
  • Ed Beckstrom 
  • Taylor Jernigan 
  • Japhet Nylen 
  • Andy Camerio 
  • Russell Whigham

Mack asks that volunteers be at the planetarium by 6:00PM.  There will be plenty of hot chocolate and coffee on hand.  This event is free to the public as a Public Service of Troy State University Montgomery.

Thanks to Mack for conceiving of and coordinating this event.  It’s not too late to pitch in.  Let Mack know if you see that you can help, or just drop by.  

In the event that clouds preclude telescopic viewing, the telescope clinic and planetarium feature will go on as scheduled.

December Star Party

On Saturday December 20, AAS members and friends: Eddie Kirkland, and his friend Karl Wiggins and daughter Tamora, Russell Whigham, and John Tatarchuk braved freezing temperatures to take advantage of the clear winter sky.  Seeing was less than perfect, but transparency was very good, affording excellent views of the winter open star clusters and the always breath taking, Orion Nebula.  As usual, John was picking off invisible Abell planetaries with his 18-inch, while the rest of us are quite satisfied with the Messier and NGC objects above.  Four hours in the cold was all the fun I could stand, but Eddie and John stayed much later.

New AAS Domain Name

The Auburn Astronomical Society has recently registered the domain name, “”.  At this time, entering this URL will simply redirect to the user to the original Mindspring address. This satisfies two issues:  

1) It affords your Webmaster the flexibility changing ISPs if problems arise, and

2) It will be easier to tell someone the location of the society’s Web page without the impossible to remember “ ” 

Please let me know if you have problems with the new address.

Membership Dues Reminder
John Zachry, Secretary/Treasurer

Members of the Auburn Astronomical Society for 2004 as of December 27, 2003 are: 

  • Bill Blankley        
  • Alan Cook
  • Jeff Graves  
  • Jim McLaughlin
  • Japhet Nylen & Family 
  • Mark Pratt
  • John Tatarchuk
  • Scott Thompson
  • Robert West
  • Russell Whigham
  • Ricky Wood
  • John Zachry 
If you don’t see your name above, and wish to enjoy the benefits and privileges of membership, you’ll need to send $15.00 for Regular Membership or $7.50 for Full-Time Students to:
Mr.  John Zachry, Secretary/Treasurer
Auburn Astronomical Society
501 Summerfield Road
West Point GA 31833
Make checks payable to:  Auburn Astronomical Society.  You can save the postage and bring your dues to the meeting.  For questions about your dues or membership status, contact John at 

Hope to see everyone at the meeting,