The Celestial Observer – July, 2011

From the President

NSAAC does not have a monthly business meeting in July. So, the next monthly business meeting is Friday August 5th. At this point in time we don’t have a speaker for the August meeting, which will start at 8 PM at Veasey.

About 20 people attended the Teeter talk on Saturday, June 4th at Merrimac College. Members from the New Hampshire Astronomical Society (NHAS), Amateur Telescope Makers of Boston (ATMob) and of course the NSAAC clubs attended the 70 minute talk on Robert Teeter’s experiences building custom telescopes. Rob builds each premium scope around set of mirrors or using ideas that the owner has for the scope. The mechanical designs and exterior finishes are excellent!

Star parties are winding down now that the schools are closing for summer. We only have two more until October, when the schools return and schedule star parties. Now that it is warm outside NSAAC members get together and observe at either Veasey or Dark Park. Hopefully, some of the recent YAP winners will come out and observe with us and learn how to find Messier objects. If you plan to observe any night at Veasey, send out an email to the club list server. This way other members that would also like to observe will join you. Pretty soon a crowd shows up, which always makes it more fun.

Enjoy the warm weather and I hope to see you at an observation session.

If you have questions or comments email me: jefoy at

James Foy,


Download PDF Version

NSAAC Welcomes Our New Members:

Adam Zarrouki of Everett, MA

Ronald Myrick of Marblehead, MA

Jim Bastable,

Membership Director

Treasurer Report / YAP Report

NSAAC enters the summer session with 83 members in good standing. We still have about 28 members who have not paid their dues for 2011. We have had 3 confirmations from members who will not be re-joining. These numbers are typical, as our membership has fluctuated between 80 to 120 members every year since I’ve been tracking it. Of the 28 members who have not yet paid their dues, 8 of them are 1 year members, 16 have been members from 2 to 7 years, and 4 are long time members from 14 to 20 years.

A combination of the 20th Anniversary Party in 2010 and seven years of running the YAP program without outside sponsorships have reduced our assets, as we had planned. We are now at a point where we need outside funding for YAP to continue, or we will have to dip into our reserves. The board will be discussing this at the final meeting before the summer recess.

July 2011 will have five Fridays, five Saturdays, five Sundays, and two New Moons! No excuses to not get out with the telescopes, so I hope to see some of my NSAAC friends under a dark sky this summer. I’m planning to be at Starport for the next three New Moons with the monster telescope known as ‘Godzilla'; hope you can join me. Have a very safe summer and clear skies!

PS: Confirmation just received from Barrie Sawyer that Starport will be open both New Moon weekends in July.

Kevin Ackert

Minutes of the NSAAC Business Meeting, June 4th, 2011

President Foy called the June Business Meeting of the NSAAC to order at 9:03 PM. There were 5 members present plus 4 Board members. There was not an official quorum; meeting for information only.


No report


No report


Kevin announced 82 paid members in good standing. 28 members did not renew. A personal email will be sent to the other 1/4 of the membership who have not renewed that the cutoff date for access to club email list server is June.

Early Meeting Announcements:

Open forum on the agenda after New Business

Committee Reports:

Merrimack College:

Merrimack was open one day last month – about ten people showed up. The new Sky software is a significant improvement; it is very easy to use.

Salem State:

Salem State Observatory was open one day last month. The observatory is closed for the summer because the school does not offer classes. The observatory will reopen in fall. Dennis could use some help at the observatory. Contact Dennis Gudzevich or Jim Foy it you want to help with this observatory

Star Party Committee:

The upcoming star parties are:

Tentative, Monday or Tuesday, June 13th or 14th, Trahan School, Tewksbury, MA

Thursday, June 16th, Trustees of Reservations, Castle Hill, Ipswich Ma, rain date June 23rd

Saturday, June 18th, Astronomy campout, IRWS, rain date, Saturday, June 23rd

Tuesday, August 9th, Wenham Public Library

Telescope Clinic:

No activity.

News, Correspondence and Upcoming Activities:

No information

Old Business:

We now have keys to the two new lights at VMP and we have special keys for the switch boxes. See Jim Foy if you would like a key for the lights. Jim Foy has taken photos of how to use the keys and will make up a how to package which will be put on the list server. A key for the lights is in the NSAAC mailbox. The last person leaving must turn the lights back on; especially the walkway lights.

Bryan Stone indicated that Rob Tetter will give a talk on Saturday, June 4, 2011 at Cascia Hall in Merrimac College. The presentation ’89 Scopes and a Thousand Storiesis from 3 to 4 PM. The talk is open to the public.

Dark Park permit has been renewed by John Tulick and NSAAC has received the permit. We need to convert the paper copy to a PDF file and distribute it to key holding members and make it available to people that plan to observe at Dark Park in 2011.

New Business:

Expiration dates for CDs that the club has will be reviewed by the Board and determine if the monies should be designated for the YAP program. The president asked for volunteers for a committee to find sponsors for grants to support the YAP program. So far, there have been no volunteers.

Entertainment for the evening was a talk by Bryan Stone on eyepieces.

Board meeting date Monday, June 13 at 7:30 PM was changed to Tuesday the 14th due to Trahan School star party.

Meeting adjourned at 9:25PM

Respectively submitted, John Hobbs, Secretary NSAAC

Star Party News

There were no star parties in May.

For a list of upcoming star parties, see this issue’s Minutes section.

The Star Party Committee would like to thank all the members who have supported our star party effort and look forward to your continued participation in the coming months.

John Hobbs,

Star Party Coordinator

Product Feature: ‘Night Skies Stencils’

NSAAC recently received some product information that we thought merited passing along to the membership. The email began as follows:

I’m Dick Shimmin with Bridgeway Training Services of Galesburg, Illinois. B.T.S. is a not-for-profit agency that provides a variety of services to disabled persons. The sale of our American-made products help fund those programs. I have attached a portion of our brochure that includes one of our product lines, the Night Skies.


Here is the information from the brochure:

The Night Skies stencils can create a relaxing and romantic display of a real night sky in any darkened room in the home, business or offices of those associated with the North Shore Amateur Astronomy Club.

The Night Skies are available in two sizes featuring accurate and educational winter or summer night time displays over the Northern Hemisphere. Luminous paint and a corresponding star map are included with each Night Skies. The stencils can be used more than once and additional luminous paint is available. More information about the Night Skies is available at . The 8 foot Night Skies are priced at $25.00 and the 12 foot at $30.00 each. They are also featured on several other websites including the Edmund Scientifics website under ‘Fun with Astronomy’.

For freight, either size weighs 2 pounds each to ship and costs are based from Macomb, Illinois To order, email choice of size and scene along with name and complete address. To pay, with the order include your credit card’s number, its expiration date, the 3-digit ‘Vcode from the back of the card, and the name on the card to Shipping costs will be automatically added to the charge.




Getting to Veasey Memorial Park

From Interstate 95 north, take the Route 133 west (54B) exit, and follow it into Georgetown Center. Go straight through the light, now on Route 97N. Go about 1.5 miles and take a left onto Salem Street (Tea Garden Restaurant at this intersection). Stay on Salem Street and turn left onto Washington Street. VMP is down a bit on the right. Directions to all of the NSAAC observing sites in our web site’s “Observing” section:

E-Mail Listserve

If you have email access and are an NSAAC member in good standing, you may want to subscribe to the email notification system that Lew Gramer established for the Club in 1996. This is a “members only” system that places you in contact with other members for late breaking news concerning spontaneous observing activities, outings, tech talk, etc. You can subscribe by emailing your request to the address below. Your message should look like this:

To: majordomo at

Subject: Email list (you can put anything here)

Body: subscribe NSAAC Full-Name <email-address>

To remove yourself from the email list, or to temporarily suspend delivery from the list or access your other options, please use our “Subscriber Settings” Web page:
Contact Information

For more information about the club and its activities, contact Kevin Hocker, Membership Director, email: membership at or Bryan Stone, President, e-mail president at

Our club web site is:

The Celestial Observer is edited by Leor Zolman.

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