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President's Address

January 2019

Greetings to all and welcome to 2019! Happy New year to all the PAS members and friends. Yes, we are now in a New Year, with lots of promise for good things to come. New Year’s resolutions may include losing weight, giving up smoking, and a host of other bad habits that we all seem to have for one reason or another. My resolution is to get out just a little more than last year and do some observing. Yes, we all attend the outreaches, and we assist others where we can, but how about we take more time just for ourselves, and each other, and do some casual observing for those objects we have on the To–See list, but just have not spent the time to really LOOK at them. Whether it’s in your own backyard, or you head out to the SPMOS site, we all need to get out and enjoy the wonderful offerings of the heavens above us.

Now, you may ask, with all the cloudy nights in December, how could I see anything! The answer is to plan and be ready. As I write this on Sunday January 6th, we had three days of gorgeous skies, and no moon. Did anyone else take advantage of what were some of the best conditions in quite some time? I hope so, and hope you will tell us about what you were able to see at the next meeting. Winter skies are considered to be the best time to observe, as the seeing is better due to the lower temperature and humidity. Lots of favorites are up, and a few hard to see targets tend to be a bit easier to find in the cooler winter nights.

We held our annual Christmas party in December, and all who attended seems to really enjoy themselves. A big thanks to the Anonymous Person(s) who picked up the bar tab for the evening. I’m sure all the members are very grateful for your generosity.

As we move into 2019, we have quite a few events planned for the members, as well as outreach for the public. We will try to address several basic skills for the beginners, and a few advanced topics for the our seasoned members. If you have a topic you would like to see covered at one of our meetings, or if you would like to present a subject, please contact an officer and we will do our best to address it for you.

As a final request to start of the new year, I’m asking all members to commit to attending one more event than you did last year. One more meeting, one more outreach, one more event. And bring a guest- someone you know who may have an interest, but is a bit unsure as to how they will fit in. Perhaps a neighbor or family member that got a telescope for Christmas. We will do our best to welcome them into the PAS. Having the membership promote astronomy is one of our core mission objectives. We can never have too many people show up, and it makes it much easier on everyone when there are more people to assist. If you’re a new member, come out and see what is going on. You don’t need to be an expert, you just need to be there. You never know what you will learn.

Reminder to all that the annual dues are now delinquent, and the combination to SPMOS will be changed in February. If you have not yet paid, please get your dues in as soon as possible. You can mail to our Treasurer, John Scholl, pay at the January meeting, or pay by credit card on the website. And while on the site, how about voting for the Picture of the Month. Anyone can submit, and it will be available for voting for three months. Show us what your favorite picture is.

Our next meeting will be held on Friday, January 18th, at 7:30PM at UNO Science Building, and the presentation will be “Globular Clusters - What are they, Where are they and how to best observe them” by our own PAS member Barry Simon. I hope to see all of you at the next meeting. Don’t forget to bring a guest!

Bill Johnson
PAS President 2018

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