President's Message - December 2011

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by Lauri Roche

Hmmm. Let�s see what happened in 2011: An increase in sunspots and prominences, close-up exploration of Mercury and Vesta, the last American Space Shuttle launch, a near earth asteroid flyby, hundreds of extra-solar planets found from the Kepler mission including a possible earth twin, Einstein�s theories questioned, dark matter probed even further and the last full lunar eclipse that we will see for two years. Space and astronomy seems to have been rather busy during the past year.

But, it�s been a busy year for us down here, as well. We�ve spent most of the year either laughing or crying over the weather. There have been hundreds of hours of public outreach in schools, senior�s residences, at fairs, star parties and night-sky viewings from Oak Bay and Cattle Point to Metchosin and way up-island. Many more hours have been spent fine tuning the observatory and some excellent observing and photography was done this year on �the hill� once the weather gods cooperated. We had some initial success in bringing our stance on quality lighting to Victoria and Saanich municipal councils and are looking forward to updating our Sky Quality Maps in the New Year. New initiatives for membership, managing our equipment inventory, and communication with the public have all been on the radar this year and will continue to be  in the next few months. We certainly won�t ever run out of things to do down here just as there is much more to explore �out there�.

Just a quick note to say thank you to all those who helped put on our Annual General Meeting and Dinner last month at the Cedar Hill Golf Course. We had a wonderful meal, a great speaker, and some good conversation with new and old friends. If you were not able to join us this year, put us on your �To-Do� list for next November.

Happy Holidays everyone. Have a good time with friends and family and don�t forget to get outside and do some observing over the holidays.

Clear Skies.



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Last updated: January 29, 2014

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