James Paulson's roll off roof observatory at the Sunridge Observatory site, taken in the summer of 1986, housing a 10 inch f/5 Cave Astrola Newtonian reflector telescope

Saturday, August 8, 2009

What Happens at Astronomy Club Meetings

Last night a club that I belong to held an astronomy club meeting. For the second time in 2 months I decided to skip the meeting.
For many years I have been in an astronomy club of one form or another. They are a great place to get out and meet people with similar interests and share ideas. What usually does not happen however is a lot of common observation time. Often times there are fundraisers, public open houses, tour groups, not to mention the countless hours of volunteer work maintaining a facility.
So I've decided to forgo the groups for now. My interest is in observing. I don't need the headaches of dealing with all the extras required to keep everyone happy. Our club is small, and meets in the basement of a members house. Our time is occupied watching TiVo'd reruns from the Discovery channel. I can do that at home, and save the gas. I think with a group like this, the best thing we can do is have a montly agreement to meet in a field somewhere if it is clear and bring our telescopes. There is no facility to maintain.
I'm open to new ideas for how to improve an astronomy club, and make meetings more meaningful. I'm at the point where I don't even want to go anymore, but my interest in astronomy is stronger than ever.

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