100 Hours: Sunday (2009 Apr 05)
The last evening of the "100 Hours of Astronomy" found me sipping Old Brown next to the braai fire just after sunset.
No, I wasn't AWOL – thick clouds overhead provided my cover. Ed, Lynnette and myself had made a last-minute decision to set up outside a Pick 'n Pay in Brackenfell, but at the last moment the clouds proved their mettle.
Kos Coronaios in Louis Trichardt, however, was diligently at his post.
"It was possibly the best evening weather wise since Thursday," Kos noted.
He set up his telescope and data projector in the parking lot of the shopping centre, and had around 30 visitors during the early part of the evening.
"Most had specifically come to the centre to view through the telescope (I was quite chuffed), as the shopping centre was closed and only one restaurant was operating and they were extremely quite."
"Once again the Moon and Saturn were on the agenda," Kos said. "Saturn's moons Titan and Rhea were easily visible and there were a number of ooohs and wow's when they were spotted. It was interesting to note that most often the folks looking at the planet were so interested in seeing the rings and nothing else. When asked if they saw any stars or moons near the planet they would say no and I would send them back to the eyepiece and say look again."
By 20:30 there were hardly any passer's by, so Kos packed up and went for dinner with his family at Mike's Kitchen.
I can only imagine what their celebratory dinner conversation was about :-)
The Soutpansberg Astronomy Club would like to extend a warm thank you to the following organizations and people for making the 100 Hours of Astronomy in Louis Trichardt a success which was clearly evident when hearing all the ooohs and aahs as the public had their first look at Saturn and the Moon through the telescope.
The media who played a major role in advertising the event: Zoutpansberger, Mirror, Vhembe Herald, Northern Media and Jacaranda 94.7 FM.
The Soutpansberg Chamber of Commerce, Ladies Circle No 4, Homenet, Maranga Phanda, Makhado Crossing, Mikes Kitchen and Soutpansberg Tourism all helped in donating different kinds of equipment.
A special thanks to everyone who helped operate and fix telescopes, hand out brochures and information, signed up new members and made sure that the four evenings ran smoothly. These were the following members from Ladies Circle No 4, Pam Schoeman, Sandy van Niekerk, Belinda Mellows, Sonel Prinsloo and Pam Mc Cabe.
Michelle Goldschmidt from Chamber & Tourism, Gavan and Cuan Watson who all gave up their evenings to help with the event.
To the kids, parents and everyone that visited us we hope you enjoyed the views of the Moon and Saturn through the telescopes as well as the various presentations that were shown, hopefully we will see you all at the Club's next astronomy event.
For those that were not able to be there, further information on the International Year of Astronomy (IYA 2009), observation evenings in Louis Trichardt and the Astronomy Club's monthly newsletter can be obtained from Kos Coronaios.
nothing more to see. please move along.