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MCOF Public Stargazing Party Friday night, Dec. 6, 2002

Morgan County Observatory Foundation will host a public stargazing party Friday evening, December 6th from 6:30 til 9:30PM at Greenwood Elementary School site of our county's beautiful observatory. Amateur astronomers from the Foundation will be present to assist you in exploring the night sky through the many fine telescopes that will be on hand. Bring your own telescope if you like and get help on setting up and using it. You may also want to bring flashlights & lawn chairs or blankets. Many magnificent celestial objects will be visible including the crescent moon, Saturn and it's amazing rings, double stars, galaxies and nebulae. Come down and visit the observatory facility at the south end of the Greenwood property.

Displays and hands-on activities will be present, so come early. Refreshments will be served. Information will be on hand about the observatory project and how you can help support efforts to complete construction of the county's public observatory to house the donated 16" Cassegrain telescope from the US Naval Academy. Memberships in the Foundation will be available, with benefits including: exclusive Member's nights at the Observatory, Quarterly Newsletter and notifications of all events.

There will be a general meeting of the Foundation membership the following day, Saturday December 7th at 10:00 AM upstairs in the Morgan County Public Library. All current members paid up during the last year are eligible to vote for candidates for three positions open on the Board of Directors. Members are encouraged to come and make their voices heard. A list of current members will be available at the meeting, and memberships will be accepted immediately prior to the meeting.

The Foundation would like to thank the following new or returning members and donators for their generous support: J. C. & Judy Fisher - Morgan Sanitation, Laura Chaskes, Sharon Glaser, Glen Horr, John Brock, Jim Hoyt - Cacapon Group, Dave & Eda Doyle - Daveda Farms, and Bill Pechumer. All donations of $50 or more will be memorialized on Founding Members' plaques to be displayed inside the Observatory. More information about astronomy and MCOF can be found at the Foundation website at http://www.nitesky.org. Thanks to Joanna Armstrong and Patuxent Software for their excellent work donated to update the website.

Come out and enjoy the dark skies of Morgan County while learning more about astronomy and the stars. In the event of rain or mostly overcast skies, this event will be rescheduled for Saturday night December 7th. Upcoming events include Public Star Parties at the observatory January 3rd and 31st and an Indoor Star Show at the Ice House Saturday evening January 25th featuring a scientist from NASA's Hubble Space Telescope team. To get to Greenwood from Berkeley Springs, follow Rt 522 South 2 miles and take a left on Winchester Grade Rd (Rt 13), then travel 9 miles and park at the school on the left. For information 304-258-1013 or email at dynsol@intrepid.net.

MCOF Public Stargazing Party Friday night, Nov. 8, 2002

Morgan County Observatory Foundation will host a public stargazing party Friday evening, November 8th from 7:00 til 10:00PM at Greenwood Elementary School site of our county's beautiful observatory. Amateur astronomers from the Foundation will be present to assist you in exploring the night sky through the many fine telescopes that will be on hand. Bring your own telescope if you like and get help on setting up and using it. You may also want to bring flashlights & lawn chairs or blankets. Many magnificent celestial objects will be visible including the crescent moon, double stars, galaxies, globular clusters and nebulae. Come down and see the observatory facility at the south end of the Greenwood property.

Displays and hands-on activities will be present, so come early. Refreshments will be served. Information will be on hand about the observatory project and how you can help support efforts to complete construction of the county's public observatory to house the donated 16" Cassegrain telescope from the US Naval Academy. Memberships in the Foundation will be available, with benefits including: exclusive Member's nights at the Observatory, Quarterly Newsletter and notifications of all events.

Construction on the interior of the Observatory has resumed with a crew of volunteers led by Jack Sorenon installing electrical wiring and junction boxes in the warming room. Brice Williams, Bob Wurster and Jason Arnold also contributed their time and expertise to this effort. John Schrider and Matt Lacey donated construction of a wall in the viewing room last week.

The Foundation would like to thank the following new or returning members and donators for their generous support: Tamme Marggraff, Southern Belles CEO's, Marilyn Conant, Portals, Adrian van Leen, Terry Dean, Jack Sorenon, Jeanne Mozier, Brice Williams, Bob Wurster, Jason Arnold, John Schrider and Matt Lacey. All donations of $50 or more will be memorialized on Founding Members' plaques to be displayed inside the Observatory.

Come out and enjoy the dark skies of Morgan County while learning more about astronomy and the stars. In the event of rain or mostly overcast skies, this event will be rescheduled for Saturday night November 9th . Upcoming events include Members night at the observatory November 29th and a public Star Party Dec 6. To get to Greenwood from Berkeley Springs, follow Rt 522 South 2 miles and take a left on Winchester Grade Rd (Rt 13), then travel 9 miles and park at the school on the left.

MCOF Public Stargazing Party Saturday night, October 5, 2002

Morgan County Observatory Foundation will host a public stargazing party Saturday evening, October 5th from 7:00 til 10:00PM at Greenwood Elementary School site of our county's beautiful observatory. Amateur astronomers from the Foundation will be joined by visiting members of the Shenandoah Astronomical Society to assist you in exploring the night sky through the many fine telescopes that will be on hand. Bring your own telescope if you like and get help on setting up and using it. You may also want to bring flashlights & lawn chairs or blankets. Many magnificent celestial objects will be visible including the planet Venus in crescent phase, double stars, galaxies and nebulae. Come down and see the observatory facility at the south end of the Greenwood property.

Telescope raffle tickets will be sold this evening and there will be contests and prizes for those who attend. Many displays and hands-on activities will be present, so come early. Refreshments will be served. Information will be on hand about the observatory project and how you can help support efforts to complete construction of the county's public observatory to house the donated 16" Cassegrain telescope from the US Naval Academy. Memberships in the Foundation will be available, with benefits including: exclusive Member''s nights at the Observatory, Quarterly Newsletter and notifications of all events.

Volunteers are needed to help out at the Apple Butter Festival, especially for Face Painting. Help is also welcomed at our Star Parties and other events.

Our quarterly Indoor Star Show lecture series at Ice House on Saturday, October 26 at 7PM will feature Mark Klosinsky from the Jet Propulsion Laboratory's Solar System Ambassadors program speaking about Stonehenge.

The new Orion 90mm refracting telescope being raffled off at the Apple Butter Festival Sunday Oct 13th at 4 PM is on display this month at Citizen's National Bank in downtown Berkeley Springs. Tickets may be purchased there and also at Portals, the new store in town next to the Mexican restaurant.

The Foundation would like to thank the following new or returning members and donators for their generous support: Barry Morrison; Susan Harris; John Alexander; Paula Osborne; David Hansen; Allen & Paula Baker; John Brock; Patricia Aragon; Todd Alter; Friends of Stoney Creek Store in Largent; Tri State Electric Co.; Mountain View Builders; Pine Valley School & Group Home; Dawson's Home Center and Jack Sorenon. All donations of $50 or more will be memorialized on Founding Members' plaques to be displayed inside the Observatory.

Come out and enjoy the dark skies of Morgan County while learning more about astronomy and the stars. In the event of rain or mostly overcast skies, this event will be rescheduled for Friday night October 11th. Upcoming events include: Apple Butter Festival Booth Oct. 12-13th, Indoor Star Show Oct 26, Star Party Nov 8, Dec 6. To get to Greenwood from Berkeley Springs, follow Rt 522 South 2 miles and take a left on Winchester Grade Rd (Rt 13), then travel 9 miles and park at the school on the left.

MCOF Public Star Party on Friday night, Sept 13, 2002 (reminder)

Just a reminder - There will be a star party at Greenwood School from 7:30 til 11:00 PM this Friday evening. Members please bring some snacks or drinks to share with the visiting Central Appalachian Astronomy Club from Clarksburg. http://www.caacwv.org/.

Morgan County Observatory Foundation had a booth at Martinsburg Mall this past Saturday for WV United Day, the kickoff of the United Way fundraising season. Thanks to Dave and Barbara Fye. Information on donating to United Way through payroll deduction or otherwise will be available at the star party. MCOF is proud to be a participating member in United Way this year.

We were also represented at Blackwater Falls Astronomy Weekend, where I was honored to be the keynote speaker Saturday evening and gave a presentation on the observatory. At the star party afterwards, we were all treated to a rare appearance of the aurora borealis from 9-10PM. It was truly magnificent. For more info on this yearly event, see the website http://www.kvas.org/AstronomyWeekend 2002.htm.

The United Way Day of Caring was held on Sept 10th, and the MCOF project was landscaping around the observatory. Six residents and a counselor volunteered from Pine Valley School and Group Home and helped to spread soil, plant perennials, spread mulch and water our new garden areas. Mike McKechnie of Mountain View Builders donated a dump truck, trailer and backhoe driver Marty for the event. Dawson's Home center donated the use of a Bobcat to move the topsoil to the site and spread it. Special thanks to Andrew Gekanski of Pine Valley School for coming up with the design and lending his gardening expertise, and also to Tony McBee, Executive Director of Pine Valley for donating the topsoil and plants for this wonderful addition to our project. Dave and Barbara Fye also helped with planting that day.

MCOF Public Star Party on Friday night, Sept 13, 2002

Morgan County Observatory Foundation will host a public stargazing party next Friday evening, September 13th from 7:30 til 11:00PM at Greenwood Elementary School site of our county's beautiful observatory. Amateur astronomers from the Foundation will be joined by visiting members of the Central Appalachian Astronomy Club to assist you in exploring the night sky through the many fine telescopes that will be on hand. Bring your own telescope if you like and get help on setting up and using it. You may also want to bring flashlights & lawn chairs or blankets. Many magnificent celestial objects will be visible including the quarter Moon, the planet Venus in crescent phase, double stars, galaxies and nebulae. Come down and see the observatory facility at the south end of the Greenwood property.

Telescope raffle will be sold this evening and there will be contests and prizes for those who attend. Many displays and hands-on activities will be present, so come early. Refreshments will be served. Information will be on hand about the observatory project and how you can help support efforts to complete construction of the county's public observatory to house the donated 16" Cassegrain telescope from the US Naval Academy. Memberships in the Foundation will be available, with benefits including: exclusive Member''s nights at the Observatory, Quarterly Newsletter and notifications of all events.

The new Orion 90mm refracting telescope being raffled off at the Apple Butter Festival is on display this month at Citizen's National Bank in downtown Berkeley Springs. Tickets may be purchased there and also at Portals, the new store in town next to the Mexican restaurant. Margaret Place was the lucky winner of a huge gift basket filled with celestial items given away at the Morgan County Fair.

The Foundation would like to thank the following new or returning members and donators for their generous support: Glen & Anita Stonebreaker, Eddie & Ann Bilezikian, and the Town of Bath. All donations of $50 or more will be memorialized on Founding Members' plaques to be displayed inside the Observatory.

Come out and enjoy the dark skies of Morgan County while learning more about astronomy and the stars. In the event of rain or mostly overcast skies, this event will be rescheduled for Saturday night September 14th . Upcoming events include: Blackwater Falls Astronomy weekend presentation Sept 6&7, Star Party Oct 4, Telescope Raffle Drawing Oct 13. Our quarterly Indoor Star Show lecture series at Ice House on Saturday, October 26 at 7PM will feature Mark Klosinsky from the Jet Propulsion Laboratory's Solar System Ambassadors program speaking about Stonehenge. To get to Greenwood from Berkeley Springs, follow Rt 522 South 2 miles and take a left on Winchester Grade Rd (Rt 13), then travel 9 miles and park at the school on the left.

Public Stargazing Party on Friday night, Aug. 9, 2002

Morgan County Observatory Foundation will be holding a public stargazing party Friday August 9th at 8:00 PM on the grounds of Greenwood Elementary School, site of our county's unique observatory. Amateur astronomers from the Foundation will be on hand with their fine telescopes to guide you through the wonders of the night sky. Bring your own telescope if you like and get help on setting up and using it. You may also want to bring flashlights & lawn chairs or blankets. Many beautiful celestial objects will be visible including the crescent Moon, the planet Venus in crescent phase, double stars, galaxies and nebulae. Come down and see the observatory facility at the south end of the Greenwood property.

Tickets for our new telescope raffle will be sold this evening and there will be contests and prizes for children who attend. Many new displays and hands-on activities will be present, so come early. Refreshments will be served. Information will be on hand about the observatory project and how you can help support efforts to complete construction of the county's public observatory to house the donated 16" Cassegrain telescope from the US Naval Academy. Memberships in the Foundation will be available, with benefits including: exclusive Member's nights at the Observatory, Quarterly Newsletter and notifications of all events.

Don't miss the Perseid Meteor shower this year, with the peak estimated at 50-60 meteors per hour occurring this Monday August 12th. Just step out in your backyard or look up from wherever you may be that evening, and you're sure to get a show. No equipment is necessary, and although the best viewing time is around midnight, you should see shooting stars after dark Sunday through Tuesday. The display is the result of gravel sized remnants of the comet Swift-Tuttle in the path of the Earth's orbit burning up brightly for 5 or 6 seconds as they encounter the atmosphere. With only a small crescent moon in the sky, visibility should be great for anyone interested in looking up. Meteors will appear to radiate from the constellation Perseus, which is how the Perseid shower got its name.

The Foundation would like to thank the following new or returning members and donators for their generous support: Judy & Bob Goodrich, Bob & Pat Marggraff (Portals), Amanda Cobb, Conrad C. Hammann, and Leigh Jenkins All donations of $50 or more will be memorialized on Founding Members' plaques to be displayed inside the Observatory.

Come out and enjoy the dark skies of Morgan County while learning more about astronomy and the stars. In the event of rain or mostly overcast skies, this event will be rescheduled for Saturday night August 10th. Upcoming events include: Blackwater Falls Astronomy weekend presentation Sept 6&7, Star Party Sept 13, Star Party Oct 4, Telescope Raffle Drawing Oct 13, Indoor Star Show at Ice House Oct 26.

MCOF Public Stargazing Party on Friday night, July 12, 2002

Morgan County Observatory Foundation will be holding a public stargazing party Friday July 12th at 8:00 PM on the grounds of Greenwood Elementary School. Experts from the Foundation will be on hand with their fine telescopes to guide you through the wonders of the night sky. Bring your own telescope if you like and get help on setting up and using it. You may also want to bring flashlights & lawn chairs or blankets. Many beautiful celestial objects will be visible including the planet Venus, double stars, galaxies and nebulae. Come down and see the observatory facility at the south end of the Greenwood property.

Tickets for our new 90mm Orion refractor telescope raffle will be sold this evening and there will be door prizes for kids who attend. Refreshments will be served. Information will be on hand about the observatory project here in Morgan County and how you can help support efforts to completed construction of the county's public observatory to house the donated 16" Cassegrain telescope from the US Naval Academy. Volunteers are needed to hand out information & sell raffle tickets for the MCOF booth at the County Fair August 3rd and 4th. Memberships in the Foundation will be sold at this event.

The Star Show at the Ice House this past Saturday was a wonderful experience for the 60 people who attended to hear a presentation by the lead scientist from NASA on the Gamma ray Large Area Space Telescope (GLAST) mission to be launched in 2007. Dr. Jonathan Ormes, Director of Space Sciences at NASA's Goddard Space Flight Center educated everyone present on what gamma rays are, why we should want to see the sky in this wavelength, black holes at the centers of galaxies and the details of the upcoming space telescope mission. More details can be found at http://glast.gsfc.nasa.gov. Look for more cutting edge speakers on Astronomy and Space from our quarterly Star Show series held at the Ice House.

The Central Appalachian Astronomy Club came out from Clarksburg, WV last Saturday to tour the observatory facility and share information with MCOF members. They maintain an observatory with a smaller 12" telescope, but with a great deal of electronic instrumentation and imaging devices in place. They have agreed to come out Sept 13th & 14th to share some of their imaging expertise with us. Their website is at http://www.caacwv.org.

The Foundation would like to thank the following new or returning members and donators for their generous support: Gat Caperton and Jonathan Ormes. All donations of $50 or more will be memorialized on Founding Members' plaques to be displayed inside the Observatory. Check out the great job our new webmaster Brendan Grigsby is doing.

Come out and enjoy the dark skies of Morgan County while learning more about astronomy and the stars. In the event of rain or mostly overcast skies, this event will be rescheduled for Saturday night July 13th. Upcoming events include: Morgan County Fair booth Aug 3 & 4, Star Party Aug 9th (Perseid Meteor shower), Blackwater Falls Astronomy weekend presentation Sept 6&7, Star Party Sept 13.

Friday, June 14, 2002 Star Party Re-scheduled

Due to almost 100% cloud cover forecast for tonight, the Star Party will be rescheduled for tomorrow, Saturday night 8:30 PM at Greenwood Elementary. Hope to see you all there! To get nightly viewing conditions go to http://www.earthsky.com/Features/Skywatching/Starcast/frameset.html and for the highlights of what's visible, see http://www.earthsky.com/Features/Skywatching/today.html. Keep looking up! -Kevin

MCOF Public Stargazing Party on Friday night, June 14, 2002

Morgan County Observatory Foundation will be holding a public stargazing party Friday June 14th at 8:30 PM on the grounds of Greenwood Elementary School. Bring your own telescope if you like and get help on setting up and using it. You may also want to bring flashlights & lawn chairs or blankets. Experts from the Foundation will be on hand with their fine telescopes to guide you through the wonders of the night sky. The foundation's volunteer Webmaster Jim Mattson is retiring after years of service and there is a need for a new person to take his place if anyone is interested, please call.

Many beautiful celestial objects will be visible including the planet Jupiter, double stars, galaxies and nebulae. Come down and see the observatory facility at the south end of the Greenwood property. Tickets for our new telescope raffle will be sold this evening and there will be door prizes for kids who attend. Refreshments will be served. Information will be on hand about the observatory project here in Morgan County and how you can help support efforts to completed construction of the county's public observatory to house the donated 16" Cassegrain telescope from the US Naval Academy. Memberships in the Foundation will be sold at this event.

The Foundation would like to thank the following new or returning members and donators for their generous support: Victoria Yocum-Trauger, Ike Canfield, Town of Bath, John & Janet Bausch and E. B. Gallagher. All donations of $50 or more will be memorialized on Founding Members' plaques to be displayed inside the Observatory.

Come out and enjoy the dark skies of Morgan County while learning more about astronomy and the stars. In the event of rain or mostly overcast skies, this event will be rescheduled for Saturday night June 15th.

MCOF Public Stargazing Party Friday night, May 10, 2002

Morgan County Observatory Foundation will be holding a public stargazing party Friday May 10th at 8:00 PM on the grounds of Greenwood Elementary School. Bring your own telescope if you like and get help on setting up and using it. Experts from the Foundation will be on hand with their fine telescopes to guide you through the wonders of the night sky.

There is a rare alignment of the planets that will allow you to see all 5 planets visible to the naked eye just after sunset. Come and get an unforgettable view of the planets Mercury, Venus, Mars, Saturn and Jupiter through some of the Foundation members' telescopes. Many other beautiful objects will be visible including double stars, galaxies and nebulae. Come down and see the observatory facility at the south end of the Greenwood property. Tickets for our new telescope raffle will be sold this evening and there will be door prizes for kids who attend. Refreshments will be served. Information will be on hand about the observatory project here in Morgan County and how you can help support efforts to completed construction of the county's public observatory to house the donated 16" Cassegrain telescope from the US Naval Academy. Memberships in the Foundation will be sold at this event.

The Sky Watch held at the old Woodmont Hunt Club property near Hancock last week in cooperation with the Maryland Department of Natural Resources was attended by around 25 people. Those who came were treated to beautiful dark sky site with ample view of the horizon affording all with a rare view of the planet Mercury and the other 4 planets, the galaxies M80 and M81, star clusters, double stars and more. The Foundation would like to thank Park Naturalist Dave Moore for setting up this event and looks forward to more cooperative ventures with the DNR.

The Foundation would like to thank the following new or returning members and donators for their generous support: State Farm Insurance Foundation, Duke & Doris Shepard, Shirley & Vaughn Hillgren, Edward & Minnie Ball, Robert & Virginia Goodwin, Harold McKinney, Loretta & John Brown, Sandy Kay & Michael Pushkin, John Hershey, Sylvia Hovermale, Henry & Annette Rider, Jeannie Mozier & Jack Sorenon of Star Theatre, Jan Brown, and Jim Mattson. All donations of $50 or more will be memorialized on Founding Members' plaques to be displayed inside the Observatory.

Come out and enjoy the dark skies of Morgan County while learning more about astronomy and the stars. In the event of rain or mostly overcast skies, this event will be rescheduled for Saturday night May 11th.

MCOF Public Stargazing Party Friday night, Apr. 12, 2002

Morgan County Observatory Foundation will be holding a public stargazing party Friday April 12th at 7:30 PM on the grounds of Greenwood Elementary School. There will be a New Moon that night, giving us the darkest possible skies for optimal viewing conditions. Bring your own telescope if you like and get help on setting up and using it. Experts from the Foundation will be on hand with their fine telescopes to guide you through the wonders of the night sky.

Many beautiful objects will be visible including Jupiter, Saturn, the Orion Nebula, and much more. Come down and see the observatory facility at the south end of the Greenwood property. Tickets for our new telescope raffle will be sold this evening and there will be door prizes for kids who attend. Refreshments will be served. Information will be on hand about the observatory project here in Morgan County and how you can help support efforts to completed construction of the county's public observatory to house the donated 16" Cassegrain telescope from the US Naval Academy. Memberships in the Foundation will be sold at this event.

Thanks to everyone who attended the Indoor Star Show last Saturday night at the Ice House. Dr. Jack Littleton gave a very informative show on using low cost computer video cameras to view objects through a computer. This type of setup will allow more than one person at a time to see what the telescope is pointed at. After the show, people were treated to some great views of the skies through his 11" Celestron Nexstar telescope equipped with a GPS starfinder system.

The Foundation would like to thank the following new or returning members and donators for their generous support: Tom Waugh, Morgan County Retired Teachers Association, Jean-Pierre & Carol Hsu of Hsu Studios, Gerhard Amt, Dennis Kelly, Jan and Jon Heath, Mountain State Cruisers, Dr. Jack & Becky Littleton, and Bob Sclater.

Come out and enjoy the dark skies of Morgan County while learning more about astronomy and the stars. In the event of rain or mostly overcast skies, this event will be rescheduled for Saturday night April 13th.

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