Exploring Arkansas at Coleman Observatory

Friday, May 16 2008 @ 11:45 am EDT

Contributed by: bobmoody

Dr Chuck Larson spills his guts about why he loves astronomy as AETN producer Chuck Dovish and camera operator Michad Holliday look on while Dr. Larson's wife Loretta (seated in background) watches the Arkansas Final Four championship game on their portable TV. Photo by Bob Moody
On April 7, an AETN film crew arrived at Coleman Observatory to tape footage for an upcoming segment of the program, "Exploring Arkansas" with host Chuck Dovish. AOAS members on hand were myself, Chuck Larson, Joe Roam, Linda Miller and Leonard Lynch, and what followed was an evening of explaining what amateur astronomy meant to each of us, and how Coleman Observatory came to be. We also touched on our Education and Public Outreach efforts, and how astronomy is currently changing for the person on the street who may be wanting to break into the hobby with "go to" telescopes.

AETN "Exploring Arkansas" host Chuck Dovish and cameraman Michad Holliday pose in CETUS's Lair at Coleman Observatory. Photo by Bob Moody
I had an idea last year to send a note to the AETN program "Exploring Arkansas" suggesting that amateur astronomy might be a possible new subject for investigation. I mentioned a couple of well-known advanced amateur astronomers in the state, and of course, I mentioned AOAS and our Coleman Observatory, too. I was blown away in late March when the program's producer and host, Chuck Dovish, sent me an email asking if they could come to Coleman Observatory to film a segment for an upcoming show. I said yes, of course, and we set the date of April 7 to shoot the footage.

I contacted several of our members and asked if they'd consider coming up to be a part of this event, and I was very pleased to see the members listed above that were willing and able to come and participate. May and June are shaping up to be a busy time for AOAS, and this exposure will hopefully garner us increased interest in amateur astronomy, more visitors at our upcoming AOAS/Mulberry Mountain Lodge Star Party, and increased memberships not only for AOAS, but for all Arkansas astronomy clubs as well.

We offer our sincerest thanks to Chuck Dovish and AETN for choosing Coleman Observatory to represent amateur astronomy in Arkansas, and we hope they will visit us again sometime for a full night of observing from our little corner of the Milky Way, and all the wonders of the universe!

This episode of "Exploring Arkansas" will air on AETN on Monday, June 2, 2008, at 6:30 pm. Check with your local cable provider for which channel this show appears, or check your favorite television listings for the channel and time.

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