"Pillaging the Universe One Star at a Time"

 

The 2018 Bootleg Star Party dates are:

Bootleg Spring Star Party: June 7-10

Bootleg Fall Star Party: September 6-9    

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*** Due to the number of people doing imaging at the Bootleg Star Parties, Bootleg Management is indicating that Green Lasers will not be permitted starting one hour after sunset ***

 

CLICK HERE for a copy of the 2018 Bootleg Spring Star Party Registration Form

Pre-registration deadline is Saturday, May 26th!!!  So hurry and get your forms in the mail! 

All forms must be postmarked no later than May 26th to qualify for early registration.

Map and Directions here...

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2008 Prairie Skies Star Party Pictures 

CAS Astrofest @ Camp Shaw

CAS Astrofest @ Vana's

Texas Star Party 2009

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Upcoming Observing Highlights for May 2018   (from skymaps.com)
 
2 Moon near Antares (morning sky) at 11h UT.
2 Venus 6.4 N of Aldebaran (28 from Sun, evening sky) at 18h UT. Mags. −3.9 and 0.9.
4 Moon near Saturn (morning sky) at 20h UT. Mag. 0.3.
6 Eta Aquarid meteor shower peaks. Most active for 7 days around this date. Associated with Comet Halley. Very fast, bright meteors, up to 30 per hour. Favors skywatchers in the tropics observing a few hours before dawn. Unfavorable viewing conditions this year due to bright moonlight.
The Eta Aquarids (Gary Kronk)
Meteor Shower Calendar (American Meteor Society)
6 Moon at apogee (farthest from Earth) at 1h UT (distance 404,457 km; angular size 29.5').
6 Moon near Mars (morning sky) at 7h UT. Mag. −0.5.
8 Last Quarter Moon at 2:10 UT.
9 Jupiter at opposition at 0h UT. Best time to observe the largest planet in the solar system. Mag. −2.5.
Opposition (Wikipedia)
13 Moon near Mercury (23 from Sun, morning sky) at 19h UT. Mag. −0.2.
15 New Moon at 11:49 UT. Start of lunation 1180.
Lunation Number (Wikipedia)
16 Moon near Aldebaran (15 from Sun, evening sky) at 13h UT.
17 Moon near Venus (31 from Sun, evening sky) at 19h UT. Mag. −4.0.
17 Moon at perigee (closest to Earth) at 21h UT (363,776 km; angular size 32.8').
19 Moon near Pollux (evening sky) at 13h UT.
20 Moon near Beehive cluster M44 (evening sky) at 12h UT.
Beehive Cluster (Wikipedia)
M44: The Beehive Cluster (APOD)
21 Venus 0.7 N of M35 cluster (32 from Sun, evening sky) at 10h UT. Mags. −4.0 and 5.1.
22 Moon near Regulus (evening sky) at 2h UT.
22 First Quarter Moon at 3:50 UT.
26 Moon near Spica (evening sky) at 2h UT.
27 Moon near Jupiter (evening sky) at 20h UT. Mag. −2.5.
29 Full Moon at 14:20 UT.
29 Moon near Antares (midnight 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)