Public Star Night at the Little Thompson Observatory
Friday, January 18, 2013 – 7:00 – 11:00 p.m.
850 Spartan Ave at Berthoud High School
Park east of the high school; directions are posted on the website, www.starkids.org
The guest speaker is Bryan White, known from past years for his great 3-D comet slide show as well as an out of this world Aurora Borealis show. Bryan White will be selecting Aurora pictures from 2002, 2004, and 2006. He thought it would be interesting for people to see that there is still outstanding Aurora in Yellowknife during the solar minimum. He will also have three short shows on Yellowstone, Chaco Canyon and Alpine Flowers … all in 3-D! The total show will take just over 1 hour, but he promises it will be spectacular.
Bryan has visited Yellowknife in the Northern Territories several times over the last few years and has taken some incredible pictures of this natural phenomenon. If you still remember his great 3-D comets slide shows he gave the past years at the LTO, then you know this one will be very exciting. He will also have a book signing after the show with his 3-D coffee table book on the Aurora Borealis called Prelude Lake (see it at: www.preludelake.com) for $20 (retail $64.95)
Bryan has been interested in astronomy since 1957 when he had just moved to a farm in rural Michigan. One summer evening he went outside shortly after sunset and observed a bright naked eye comet just over the tree line. It was Comet Mrkos that had been recently discovered. That event stimulated his interest in astronomy and he has been studying it ever since. Bryan began taking astro-photos in 1985 when Halley’s Comet made its visit. He noticed that his favorite photos of the Comet included trees, mountains or other scenery that gave the comet a sense of scale plus making the image more interesting. In 1996 during the Winter Star Party, he was planning a trip to photograph Comet Hale-Bopp when the discovery of Comet Hyakutake was announced. While relaxing on the beach he remembered his grandfather’s old stereoscope. Bryan mused, why couldn’t he take 3-D pictures of the upcoming Comets? He went out and purchased another camera and made a mounting system that held the two some distance apart and started taking stereo images of Hyakutake. By the time Hale-Bopp became visible he had the technique perfected. From that experience, which left him with over 1200 Hale-Bopp comet slides, he has developed a great interest in the Aurora Borealis.
Please see his website for more information http://www.astro-photo.com
Due to the large interest in this show in past years, we will use the Berthoud High School Auditorium for Bryan’s presentation. Please use the East door to get to the Auditorium. Volunteers will be on hand to help you with directions. The doors will open at 7:00pm and the show will start at 7:30pm. The Observatory will be open after his slide show, probably around 8:30pm
Weather permitting, after the presentation visitors will be invited to look through the large telescope at various celestial objects.
Public star nights are held the third Friday of each month (except July, when the facility is closed for annual maintenance). No reservations are necessary for these nights. Just come and join us for the talk and some observing afterwards.
If you have any questions, please call the observatory information line at 970-613-7793 or check the LTO web site at: www.starkids.org
President, Little Thompson Science Foundation
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