"Pillaging the Universe One Star at a Time"


The 2015 Bootleg Star Party Dates are: 

May 15th - 17th!!  

2015 Bootleg Star Party Registration Form -- CLICK HERE 

Check out the Bootleg Pictures links on the left!


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2008 Prairie Skies Star Party Pictures 

CAS Astrofest @ Camp Shaw

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Upcoming Observing Highlights for March 2015   (from skymaps.com)
2 Moon near Beehive Cluster (evening sky) at 15h UT.
M44: The Beehive Cluster (APOD)
3 Moon near Jupiter (evening sky) at 5h UT. Mag. -2.5.
4 Moon near Regulus (evening sky) at 13h UT.
4 Venus 0.09 NNE of Uranus (31 from Sun, evening sky) at 20h UT. Mags. -4.0 and +5.9. Closest planet-planet conjunction of the year.
5 Moon at apogee (farthest from Earth) at 7h UT (distance 406,385 km; angular size 29.4').
5 Full Moon at 18:05 UT.
9 Moon near Spica (morning sky) at 1h UT.
12 Moon near Saturn (morning sky) at 7h UT. Mag. +0.4.
12 Moon near Antares (morning sky) at 17h UT.
13 Last Quarter Moon at 17:48 UT.
19 Moon at perigee (closest to Earth) at 20h UT (357,584 km; angular size 33.4').
20 Total Solar Eclipse visible along a remote path from North Atlantic to Arctic Oceans. Greatest eclipse at 9:46 UT. Partial eclipse visible across all of Europe, North Africa, and central Asia.
Total Solar Eclipse, 2015 March 20 (Time and Date)
20 New Moon at 9:38 UT. Start of lunation 1141.
Lunation Number (Wikipedia)
20 Vernal equinox at 22:45 UT. The time when the Sun reaches the point along the ecliptic where it crosses into the northern celestial hemisphere marking the start of spring in the Northern Hemisphere and autumn in the Southern Hemisphere.
Vernal Equinox (Wikipedia)
21 Moon near Mars (22 from Sun, evening sky) at 22h UT. Mag. +1.3.
22 Moon near Venus (evening sky) at 21h UT. Mag. -4.0.
24 Moon near the Pleiades (evening sky) at 13h UT.
The Pleiades (Wikipedia)
25 Moon near Aldebaran (evening sky) at 7h UT. Occultation visible from Alaska.
Occultation of Aldebaran (IOTA)
27 First Quarter Moon at 7:43 UT.
29 Moon near Beehive Cluster (evening sky) at 21h UT.
M44: The Beehive Cluster (APOD)
30 Moon near Jupiter (evening sky) at 8h UT. Mag. -2.3.
31 Moon near Regulus (evening sky) at 19h UT.
>>> All times Universal Time (UT).    USA Central Standard Time = UT-6 hours.  (DST = UT-5 hrs,)


Zodiacal Light is caused by sunlight reflected off meteoric dust in the plane of the solar system. Choose a clear, moonless night, about 1-2 hours after sunset, and look for a large triangular-shaped glow extending up from the horizon (along the ecliptic). The best months to view the Zodiacal Light is when the ecliptic is almost vertical at the horizon: March and April (evening) and October-November (morning); times reversed for the southern hemisphere.
Zodiacal Light (Wikipedia)
Astronomy Picture of the Day (APOD)
Photographing the Zodiacal Light (Weatherscapes)