AAA President Message – July

Dear AAA Members,

June brought clear nights for observing at our public observing sites, Spring Starfest, and our monthly trip to North South Lake.

It was wonderful to be back in Woodlawn Cemetery for AAA’s annual Spring Starfest stargazing with 400 of our fellow New Yorkers. A big thanks to organizers Rori Baldari, Susan Andreoli, John Benfatti, and Amy Wagner; presenter Jason Kendall; prize donor Gary Young; and the multitude of observers who brought telescopes and other gear.

On June 18, the American Astronomical Society announced that it is acquiring Sky & Telescope, which formed in 1941 from two former publications: The Sky, and The Telescope. As many AAA Members are aware, The Sky was the official AAA publication since its inception in 1936. It absorbed our previous publication, The Amateur Astronomer, which ran its first issue in April 1929. What a legacy! More of AAA’s storied history can be found in Patrick Rizzo’s A History of the First Forty Years of the AAA.

A dozen AAA members have traveled to Chile, Argentina, or the South Pacific Ocean to view the total solar eclipse on July 2. Expect reports and images from their travels in upcoming Eyepiece articles. For those of us not attending in person, AAA has partnered with the Exploratorium to host a live feed of the eclipse from Chile, beginning at 4:00 p.m. EDT on July 2.

The annual Tanabata Festival will be July 13 at Riverside Park.  Stan Honda is coordinating AAA volunteers, and liaising with several partner organizations to plan an incredible evening of public star-gazing, stories, origami, and more.

Beyond our planned July events, AAA observers have been requested to participate at an NYPD-hosted STEM fair for middle school students, and two Apollo 11 anniversary events: a launch anniversary event at Carnegie Hall, and a landing anniversary event at AMNH. These opportunities to inspire people of all ages and build relationships with local organizations are only possible with the help of our volunteer observers and coordinators. If you would like to help with events like these, or other facets of AAA, contact any person on the Board of Directors, or respond to upcoming announcements about a variety of volunteering opportunities.

Clear Skies,
Irene Pease
AAA President

Links:
Spring Starfest – https://www.aaa.org/eyepiece/spring-starfest-2019/
Rizzo’s History –  https://www.aaa.org/articles/a-history-of-the-first-forty-years-of-the-amateur-astronomers-association/
Live feed of the eclipse – https://www.aaa.org/observing/total-solar-eclipse-july-02-2019/
Tanabata Festival – https://www.aaa.org/2019-tanabata-festival/
AAA Director – https://www.aaa.org/theclub/

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