Astronomy Nights '18
at Robbins Farm
This summer there will be a series of Astronomy Nights at Robbins Farm
Park. Each night we'll have at least one telescope out to view objects in
the night sky.
There'll be plenty to see -- the sky is the limit!
The events are totally informal and fun for all ages. Weather permitting,
the dates are as follows:
If we get bad weather, the rain dates will be the following Sunday
- May 26 (8:00pm): Jupiter is up in the East at dusk as
Venus sets in the West. A nearly full moon will be a beautiful
sight as it leads Jupiter across the sky.
- June 9 (8:30pm): Both Jupiter and Venus are higher in the sky
now, though Venus is still setting not long after sun down. While
the planets typically move further along the sky day to day, due
to Venus's orbit closer to the Sun, it can appear to move in a
retrograde fashion from our perspective. A moonless sky reveals
more stars than our previous night.
- July 14 (8:45pm): Jupiter is now high in the southern sky at
sundown and Saturn is now rising in the East, displaying its rings
in increasing clarity as it rises higher in the sky. The Moon is setting
at dusk, just above Mercury. Venus is still up in the West.
- August 4 (8:45pm): Jupiter and Saturn are up in the southern
sky, and a moonless night lets us see into the deep sky. As the
sky darkens, Mars rises in the East, giving us a first glimpse of
the Red Planet for the season.
- Sept 8 (8:00pm): After Jupiter accompanied us through the
whole summer, it has now begun to set at dusk. But as Jupiter
yields its place of prominence in the sky, Saturn is high in the
South, and Mars is now higher in the South-West. Another moonless
night gives us a chance to see some deep sky objects.
Download the poster
to print a reminder.
Each Astronomy Night will start when the stars come out and usually lasts
a couple hours. To add the schedule to your own calendar, import the
file. If it is overcast we'll have to cancel and hope for
clear weather the follow night, but as long as there are some stars
visible we'll give it a shot. For reminders and weather decisions,
consider joining my announcement
mailing list. Weather decisions for questionable nights will
also be posted on this site. Rain dates are the following night for
each date. We set up the telescopes on the observation area of Robbins
Farm Park that overlooks Boston.
Please note: it
will be dark in the park! Bring a flashlight, but please keep it
aimed at the ground while you're in the park. Parents, please help your
children remember this rule. It takes your eyes a while to adjust to the
dark, and you'll see more in the sky once your night vision is working.
Keeping your flashlight pointed at the ground helps everybody keep their
eyes adjusted to the dark. Red light doesn't hurt night vision as much so
a red flashlight or red cellophane over a flashlight helps a lot! Consider
using bug spray too.
If you have questions, feel free to contact me at jeff [at]
arlingtonastronomy [dot] org