President's Message - May 2008

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by Joe Carr

Observatory Project

Bruno and his volunteers are working on finishing outside of the building. We will have a nice observing area in front of the observatory when they are finished. The automatic roof opener is installed, and we expect to bring the Paramount ME to mount on the pier in mid-May. The computer systems and weather station are ready to go, as the Technical Committee continues work with documentation, and other important details. We haven't chosen an opening date for our new observatory yet, but it is now only a few weeks away.   Observatory Project


As I write this in early May, Astronomy Day is only a few days away.  Victoria Centre always puts a great deal of effort into this event, and May 10th will be no exception.  This year all of our Astronomy Day activities will be held at the Centre of the Universe atop Observatory Hill.  Daytime activities start at 10am and run through to 4pm.  Then we take a break for a few hours before the nighttime activities happen between 7pm and 11pm.  Since we are not holding Astronomy Day at the Royal BC Museum this year, we expect to see less tourists, but more locals.  The CU has waived their admission fee for the day, so invite your friends and family - print off some Astronomy Day Posters (68k pdf) and give them out as reminders.

RASC General Assembly - "Astronomy Night in Canada" - If you are planning to attend the GA in Toronto in June, hopefully you have already registered and taken advantage of the Early-Bird pre-registration savings.  If not, there is still time to pre-register and arrange for your accommodation on the York University campus.  There are some important issues to be discussed at this year's GA, so if you wish to have your vote counted, please contact Chris Gainor, our National Rep (contact info).  He can provide you with proxy voting forms, so he can represent your views when the issues are presented at the GA.  The GA also is an opportunity to have some fun and socialize with your fellow amateur astronomers.  There are some interesting activities planned by the three Toronto area Centres who are sponsoring this year's GA.


NGC4490 & SN2008ax - photo by John McDonaldElizabeth van Akker achieved a major milestone in her observing last month: she was awarded the Messier Certificate. Elizabeth's modesty prevented us from doing a formal presentation at a meeting, however congratulations Elizabeth, from all members of Victoria Centre.  Bill Weir reports he has completed the RASC Deep Sky Challenge list, which is quite an accomplishment since "challenge" is the keyword here.  Even Bill's legendary observing skills have been put to the test with this list.  Of course, being the obsessive observer that he is, there are several other lists he is working on!

Our cold and cloudy April weather did not give us much opportunity for observing, however a few of our members persevered. Several of our members observed supernova SN2008ax in the NGC4490 galaxy, and John McDonald took a wonderful photo of this event for us all to enjoy.

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Last updated: January 29, 2014

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