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MSRAL Convention May 29-31

For the 2015 MSRAL conference we are striving for balance; balance between professional and amateur presentations, between inspiration and how-to education, between concepts and technical details, between substance and social interaction.

The conference will start with the traditional CAAS Pisces fry to be held at Reservoir Park in Little Rock.

On Saturday, following the region’s business meeting, we will have a full day of professional and amateur astronomer presentations on a spectrum of topics. All this topped off with an evening banquet and keynote speaker.

Sunday morning we will turn to three separate workshops. One covering imaging, to be lead by CAAS members John Reed and Chris Lasley. The second, visual and photometric observation of variable stars, to be lead by Dr. Jeff Robertson and Bruce McMath. The third, a workshop for club leaders and would be club leaders, dedicated to club development, operation and management, to be lead by Jim Small and Darrell Heath.

About the speakers
We are excited about the speakers we have lined up. A mix of knowledgeable an inspiring professional and amateur astronomers to present on a broad range of topics, from astrobiology to cutting edge outreach concepts targeting the disabled and blind; from tips on organizing and recording your visual observing program, to tracking asteroids for science; from planning for the eclipse of 2017 to the frontiers of professional/amateur collaboration. All this followed by workshops for imaging, variable star work, and club development where every participant becomes a presenter, making for an awesome pool of talent.

For more information click the button above and to the left.

Regular Monthly Meeting 5/9/2015

Join the Central Arkansas Astronomical Society Saturday evening for a night of information and, weather permitting, observing under the stars.

  • First, at 6 PM, we’ll have the Supper Bowl. This month we are having pulled pork, vinegar slaw and potato salad casserole.  The price is only $6 each.  Please use the RSVP option above to reserve your spot and so we’ll know how much to make.
  • Then, before the regular meeting we’ll have a short workshop on how to properly use the 14″ Dobsonian for observatory level member who wants to be cleared to use it.
  • Next, at 7 PM, we’ll have our meeting. On tap for tonight we have:
    • Jim Dixon, planetary imaging.
    • Stephen Caldwell, RRT update and how to participate.
    • Darrell Heath, report on recent outreach activities.
    • Chris Lasley, Alcor Report and MSRAL program review.
    • Discussion about a summer membership observing event and/or an observing outing to the Winona area of the Ouachita forest.
    • Time permitting – Bruce McMath, what we/I have learned recently about light pollution and the hope for progress.
  • Then, if the skies cooperate we’ll set up in the observing field.

See you Saturday.

National Astronomy Day 4/25/2015

NA-Day 2015

Next Saturday, April 25th, is our National Astronomy Day event at Pinnacle Mountain. Our activities begin at 2pm outside the visitor center with safe solar viewing through a variety of telescopes. We will also be harnessing the Sun’s energy to roast marshmallows coated in chocolate powder (yum!). Water rockets and bubble blowing will be on tap for the late afternoon. Free goodies courtesy of the Arkansas Space Grant Consortium will also be available throughout the afternoon and evening.

Finally, capping off the day, there will be a star party from 8:30-10pm. All events are free and family friendly so c’mon out to celebrate all things astronomical!

Feel free to pass along this info to anyone else you know who might want to come out that day.