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 Mulberry Mountain / AOAS Star Party
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nspace01
 Wednesday, April 30 2008 @ 09:13 pm EDT (Read 20204 times)  
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As most AOAS members know, the first annual Mulberry Mountain Star Party, sponsored by the Arkansas/Oklahoma Astronomical Society, will be held on June 6th & 7th, 2008.


Mulberry Mountain Lodging & Events is a 650 acre facility located 16 miles north of Interstate 40 on Arkansas Hwy 23, otherwise known as the Pig Trail Scenic Byway. The facility boasts of “The Darkest Skies in Arkansas” at coordinates N 35° 42' 36" W 93° 47' 44"


Mulberry Mountain offers cabins, pull-through RV sites and improved tent campsites with water, electricity & showers with virtually unlimited primitive campsites also available.

Contact Mulberry Mountain Lodging & Events for information and reservations at:

http://mulberrymountainlodge.com/index.htm

This 1st year of the Mulberry Mountain Star Party coincides with the Mulberry Mountain Hot Air Balloon Festival, scheduled to begin at dawn on Saturday, June 7th, 2008. Watch as Hot Air Balloons rise into the air in the early morning and again that afternoon, wind and weather permitting. We understand that tethered balloon rides may also be offered for a fee.

AOAS plans to set up a Public Observation Area on Friday and Saturday evenings.

We would like to encourage as many AOAS members as possible, to attend at least one evening and bring their scopes, to set up in the Public Observation Area.

Non members may set up their equipment in the Public Observation Area as well. All scopes are welcome.

Amateurs who do not wish to participate in public viewing or who require a “lights free” area will be located away from established light sources. **NOTE** We hope to offer this event annually, and we hope it may grow into such an event as to someday have enforceable lighting regulations. That will come sometime in the future if we plan it properly, but until such restrictions are actually in place, we can NOT guarantee that NO lights will be present and astrophotographers should be aware and prepare for this contingency.

Vendors will be welcome to attend, and a “Swap Meet” will take place Saturday afternoon to buy, sell, or trade any astronomical items if there is enough interest to do so.

There will be NO registration fees for this year’s Star Party, but non-profit donations to AOAS would be very much appreciated.

Mulberry Mountain Star Party 2009 will be held on June 19 & 20th, 2009. We would GREATLY appreciate other Arkansas /Oklahoma amateur astronomers, or other astronomy clubs or societies who may wish to take part in the planning and promotion of next year’s event.


nSpace01
 
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ejbragg
 Saturday, May 03 2008 @ 08:37 pm EDT  
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> Amateurs who do not wish to participate in public viewing or who require a “lights free” area will be located away from established light sources.

Does this mean the public viewing area will be set up in a lighted area? Surely not!

By the way, for anyone new at this, it is suggested, for the sake of star party etiquette, that you bring low power red flashlights instead of white light flashlights. After nightfall, this is to allow your pupils (as well as those around you) to remain dilated / adjusted to low lighting and sensitive to the starry skies. Red light does not contract your pupils like white light does. Adjusting your vision from bright light to dim light, it can take between 20 to 40 minutes for your pupils to completely dilate.


"Thus the heavens and the earth were completed in all their vast array." - Genesis 2:1, NIV
 
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nspace01
 Monday, May 05 2008 @ 03:14 pm EDT  
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That means that there will be and area for people who want to be free of white light so they can do astrophotography...............

The Public Observation Area will be as it always is.........restricted to white light as much as practical and possible..............


nSpace01
 
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ejbragg
 Saturday, May 10 2008 @ 06:53 pm EDT  
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I just received my new filters:
Meade blue 80A
Meade green 58
Meade yellow 12
Meade red 23A
Meade 13% passive moon
Thousand Oaks LP-1 (broadband Nebula)

Can't wait to break them in at the dark sky site!


"Thus the heavens and the earth were completed in all their vast array." - Genesis 2:1, NIV
 
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nspace01
 Sunday, May 11 2008 @ 12:41 pm EDT  
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I can't wait to try them on mine............... Laughing Out Loud


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lowell mccormick
 Tuesday, May 20 2008 @ 08:59 pm EDT  
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Greetings from south Louisiana,

I just found out about the star party from a friend of mine who lives just up the hill, south of the Mulberry River. I've been visiting my buddy since 1974 and swam, canoed and kayaked the Mulberry many times. My wife and I have been planning to take a vacation with my 16" dob up to our friend's for the June New Moon for the last few months and my friend called me up Saturday and said there was a star party just up the road. We're heading back to New Orleans on the Saturday morning of the star party so I'll only be able to be there on Friday afternoon for some solar viewing with an Astro-Tech 102 with a 60mm ha filter and stay after dark long enough to see some deep sky views. The DSO's should be sharper up there than viewing them down here from underwater. I'm excited, I hope the weather's good.

Well, gotta go see if I can catch a glimpse of the ISS with the 16" at 90X.

Lowell


 
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nspace01
 Wednesday, May 21 2008 @ 12:56 am EDT  
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We will look forward to seeing you..........Too bad you will miss he Hot Air Balloons on Saturday...............Just pray that the weather cooperates............ Laughing Out Loud


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nspace01
 Thursday, May 22 2008 @ 02:28 pm EDT  
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Just a few comments on the upcoming star party:

I plan to arrive at Mulberry Mountain in the early afternoon of Friday the 6th to "Secure" our area and set up my tent. Hopefully, the Hot Air Ballooners will not have taken the spot we selected on our visit on April 11th..........

There should be room for all AOAS Members to camp near the Public Observation Area (with electricity, if the area we selected is available).

I printed a banner to mark the location of the Public Observation Area and several other signs to point the way and to request "No White Lights" in the observation area.

I would again like to encourage as many members of AOAS as possible to attend at least one night of the Star Party.

We need your support!!!!!

If anyone is interested, bring Hot Dogs, Chips, Drinks, Beans, Marshmallows, etc, and we can have a "AOAS Pot Luck Weenie Roast" on Friday and/or Saturday evenings..........


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bobmoody
 Sunday, May 25 2008 @ 02:13 am EDT  
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Hi, guys.

To clear-up a little confusion about the public observation area.......we will setup our telescopes near the office area for public viewing from a dark-sky site. We should take advantage of this situation to tell visitors that we're there to try and keep the "real" observing area as dark as possible. This is an IDEAL opportunity to do so. If there are any white lights near the office, I'll try to get them turned out just for our public viewing event. When we speak of a "red-light" district, I too hope that this will be in the farthest corner of the open field, somewhere near the bathrooms. If there are white lights on the bathrooms, I'll see if Mr. Patton will allow us to either wrap them in a red cellophane or some other type of reddish shroud, just for our visiting astronomer guests that will want everything as dark as possible.

This place is so HUGE that there shouldn't be any conflicts with the ballooners who wish to, or I guess REQUIRE such a gigantic area to inflate their balloons. I'm just looking forward to taking a little ride straight up in one of the tethered balloons.

ALSO, please note that I edited Leonard's posting of the incorrect dates for the 2009 event. We will hold the event next year on a DARK weekend which requires it to be on the 19th and 20th of June. I've gotten some emails asking about the discrepancy in the dates for next year's event, and if anyone sees the incorrect dates of June 12th and 13th for next year a n y w h e r e else, PLEASE LET ME KNOW IMMEDIATELY.....I want to clear up this misinformation as soon as possible, and yes, it was probably I who first started this misinformation to begin with..... I just need to correct it asap.

It looks like we'll have a very good turn-out even without very much real advertising. Next year's event will be so much better since we'll have so much more time to advertise and promote the thing at that time. For this year, though, I'm looking forward to it being a really good time.


Bob Moody
 
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LME
 Tuesday, May 27 2008 @ 10:27 pm EDT  
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Howdy all!
It doesn't look like I'm going to make it. Cry I can't go into details, but it has some thing to do with our wedding anniversary and a promise she said I made!?!? Wink I guess I won't be seeing any of you untill June 28th. Have FUN!

Clear skies,
Larry


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ejbragg
 Saturday, May 31 2008 @ 01:37 am EDT  
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I'm definitely bringing 4, possibly 5 others with me for both nights. One of them is my wife's sister, whom we all just bought an 8 inch dob for a graduation present. "First light" was seen through it 2 weeks ago, but it had a flaw. I still have it in my garage, and I just received the replacement part (new primary mirror) and I'll be adjusting and collimating the mirrors this weekend. Therefore, she'll be breaking it in during the event.

Sorry we won't get to enjoy your company, Larry. Maybe next time? Happy anniversary! Better do what the wife wants!!


"Thus the heavens and the earth were completed in all their vast array." - Genesis 2:1, NIV
 
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bobmoody
 Saturday, May 31 2008 @ 10:23 pm EDT  
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I'm disappointed to hear that, too, Larry. But, I know how keeping the harmony always reigns at home. I look forward to seeing you on June 28th.

Bob


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nspace01
 Sunday, June 01 2008 @ 05:41 pm EDT  
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Larry, when Moma is happy, everybody is happy...................... Laughing Out Loud


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kedi151
 Monday, June 02 2008 @ 02:13 pm EDT  
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Bob,

I thought during our visit to MM we had decided to set up down in the back right corner close to the camping area where we could have our vehichles, tents and telescopes all together. Are you saying that we will now be up front.

I am planning on arriving sometime Friday afternoon (3ish). See everybody there


Kenny
 
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nspace01
 Monday, June 02 2008 @ 09:35 pm EDT  
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That was my understanding too...........Along the fence that seperates the "Bandstand" area from the rest of the area.......................There is water and electricity along the fence.......


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dgrosvold
 Wednesday, June 04 2008 @ 01:50 pm EDT  
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Hey all -

I'm sorry to report that I won't be able to make this event either. We have a house that's been sitting empty for the past 13 months, and I've GOT to get it rented out. We're working every weekend on it to get it ready to rent out by the 1st of July. What a hassle! I hate making those mortgage payments every month with nothing coming in, so we've got to stay focused on that before any fun stuff. Too bad.

See you all later.
Frown


Dave - Morrow, AR
 
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ejbragg
 Wednesday, June 04 2008 @ 03:04 pm EDT  
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Sorry to hear that, too, Dave. Maybe next time.

..... I get Dave's burger!


"Thus the heavens and the earth were completed in all their vast array." - Genesis 2:1, NIV
 
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kedi151
 Wednesday, June 04 2008 @ 08:32 pm EDT  
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Bob,

What is the plan in the event of weather issues? Is there plans for a presentation of some type and should we plan on meeting someplace?

Kenny


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bobmoody
 Thursday, June 05 2008 @ 04:19 am EDT  
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Hi, Kenny and Leonard.

At our MM overnighter in April, I thought we talked about segregating the amateur astronomers who DON'T want to necessarily mix with the general public and we decided that we would setup our AOAS telescopes near the office area. The area you mentioned in the corner of the field is where I suggested that the observers and imaging amateurs would naturally want to consider for setting up their telescopes and other equipment. WHY, you ask? Logic, my dear Watson, pure logic.

I looked at it as if I were one of these people and I wanted to keep everything as convenient for myself as I could. I'd want to setup somewhere near the bathrooms and showers, first off. I'd prefer to drive directly to the area where I wanted to erect my equipment, and pitch my tent there. That's the reason I suggested the corner near the bathrooms, somewhere not too far from the road, but definitely out a little ways into the field. I'd hope that others would want to join me out there for camaraderie and because we know we'd all respect each other's dark adaptation. I thought we even discussed the idea and assumed that even some of our fellow AOAS members would also consider setting up there instead of doing the "public events" near the offices.

Logically, once again, I assumed that we'd have our member telescopes, at least of those who wanted to help out with the public, be there near the office so that we could specifically KEEP THE LIGHTS AWAY from the others down in the back 40, near the bathrooms. This is the madness behind my ideas for this segregation of dark-adapted observers and the not-as-concerned with dark adaptation for those of us near the offices.

I guess you guys might not have noticed in the previous messages when I thought I mentioned little parts of this idea. I honestly thought we'd discussed these ideas on April 11, and I didn't go into any more detail before now because I thought we were all on the same page. My mistake, once again. If we do anything like this next year, I'd suggest that if we do it for a two-nighter again, we switch-off with each other on the two nights that the public might be involved. One small group of us on Friday, and a different small group on Saturday. Next year I'll be ready to really participate as a human being again after I get the medications I need to offset the pain that restricts so much of what I can (NOT) do now. If we're lucky, Vernon might not insist that we do any public observing at all, and that would allow us all to get the maximum enjoyment out of our efforts.


And BTW, Kenny, I just assumed that everyone had to decide for themselves how to handle poor conditions. I talked to Joe when he came in from work today and we won't be coming to the event if it's stormy weather on Friday/Friday night. We're hoping that Saturday will show good signs for enough clearing to observe Saturday night. I haven't planned for any presentations because I wouldn't have time to do any presentations if we happen to be observing with the public. Honestly, I wish we didn't have to worry about showing the public anything when we go to MML, but, Vernon asked us to do this this year. I'm happy to do it this year, and as I say, we might do it again next year but with a better conceived plan in 09. Maybe we won't have to do that any more after next year, and we can all concentrate on actually enjoying this great observing site for what it is. It has a lot to do with how much our events grow from year-to-year. I can only say what WE are doing (as in Joe, his family, and myself) since we both plan to use tents and camp out. NO WAY will I ever stay in another tent when the storms are known to be coming in on any night when I plan to camp outside. That night in NM in October 2005 with Jay Hilgartner was ENOUGH, for BOTH of us.

And one final thing that concerns this year's star party.....I know from emails that have come my way from so many people that this event seems pretty unorganized and poorly planned. I have had to do so much by myself for so long, that you might not have noticed when I finally had my fill and just decided I'm tired of busting my butt for basically nothing. I hope everyone who isn't satisfied with this year's event will consider giving of your time next year. I'm fairly certain from other emails with some members of other clubs around the state who plan to come this year, that next year there'll be others taking on some specific job or another that will allow us to do so much better in 2009, on June 19th and 20th, by-the-way. Please consider how you would feel if it were you who had been responsible for all that's been done in the last 5 years. I hope I'll have more members who want to do more, and give more of their time in the future to help spread the work a little more. Much of what we do doesn't require very much time or effort, but if it takes a few hours per year off the shoulders of any ONE member, its a very much appreciated effort. Next year will be better due to more people being involved with the thing, and all who participate will be proud of what they've done to make it whatever it is for '09.

Everyone, please consider doing something, or consider doing something more for AOAS next year, and every year from then on as well !










Bob Moody
 
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ejbragg
 Thursday, June 05 2008 @ 12:25 pm EDT  
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Quote by: bobmoody


And one final thing that concerns this year's star party.....I know from emails that have come my way from so many people that this event seems pretty unorganized and poorly planned. I have had to do so much by myself for so long, that you might not have noticed when I finally had my fill and just decided I'm tired of busting my butt for basically nothing. I hope everyone who isn't satisfied with this year's event will consider giving of your time next year.



Okay, I'm giving Dave's burger to BOB!

But since no one's claimed it, I'll still take Larry's burger. What else is more important than food, anyway?

HEY! There's still 5 (committed) + 1 (semi-committed) of us who are coming, RAIN OR SHINE. Personally, I'm counting on any rain-predicting forcasters to be proved wrong!

I've never been to this site. Are there any close-by grills for cooking? If so, I'll bring:
* charcoal and starter
* buns
* mustard/ketchup
* tomatos
* lettuce
* plasticware
* paper plates

If someone can bring beans or whatever, we'll do it right. And why don't we make this rule:
EVERYONE BRING YOUR OWN HAMBERGER MEAT
(or whatever kind of meat you want to cook). And
EVERYONE BRING YOUR OWN DRINK

If there are no grills out there, somebody please set me straight, quickly!

Now, Bob, I've noticed that at every event we have, you always busy yourself, making sure everyone is happy. I think by nature, you're just a server of others. You never sit down, you never relax; you're always teaching, always gathering, always on the go.
So I'm bringing a burger for you, (Dave's, of course). All I ask is that you to try to SIT DOWN and relax for a change .....

and stop whining! Wink

(Just had to throw that in there! You know we appreciate you.)


"Thus the heavens and the earth were completed in all their vast array." - Genesis 2:1, NIV
 
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