President's Address

May 2018


As we move into May, I look back at the beginning of the year and reflect on how far we have come in a short period of time. With events like the SPMOS Bunkhouse Rededication in February, and the Outreach events at Jean Lafitte in March, and the recent Astronomy Day event at Infinity Space Center, we have had a lot going on. Quite a few members also attended the Deep South Spring Scrimmage at Feliciana. We have had some prime observing conditions in the last few weeks, and hope that you have been taking advantage of it. Have you been out to the SPMOS Dark Site for personal observing recently, or just in your own back yard? Tell us what you’re looking at.


Our Astronomical calendar is ripe with coming special celestial events as well. Venus is putting on a spectacular show each evening just after sunset in the western sky. On May 9th Jupiter will be at opposition, closer to the Earth, visible all night long, and bigger and brighter than any other time of the year. This is the best time to view and photograph Jupiter and its moons. A medium-sized telescope should be able to show you some of the details in Jupiter's cloud bands. A good pair of binoculars should allow you to see Jupiter's four largest moons, appearing as bright dots on either side of the planet. Mars is rising earlier and earlier each evening, and will be at opposition in July. We hope to dedicate the July meeting to observing Mars, weather permitting.


We have no lack of events coming up. The May Outreach at Bogue Chitto State Park is scheduled for May 19th, and we have the LIGO Field Trip in Livingston lined up for June 16th. Are you making plans to attend either or both of these events? Are we serving you, the member, with these events, or do you want to see other types of events. Please let the officers know, either personally or through email or on the website, AstroNola.org.


Our Website has the monthly photography contest. We currently have 16 photos vying for Photo of the Month. Look at the submissions and vote for your favorite picture. Submit your own for next month’s contest.Our May meeting will be held Friday May 4th, at 7:30PM at UNO. I hope to see all of you at the meeting. Bring a guest!


Bill Johnson
PAS President 2018

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