Monthly Public Observing at Crockett Parket Plus Solar Viewing

This month's meeting is a double header, we'll have solar observing in the afternoon and nighttime stargazing at night.  

I will not be there but our NOVAC & Crockett Coordinator, Jim Mosquera, will be there to greet you.

You do not need any astronomical equipment to attend. All you need is an interest in the wonders of the cosmos.

C.M. Crockett Park in Fauquier County, Virginia offers an excellent place to stargaze for the beginner or the advanced. Depending on the time of year, expect to see constellations, planets, star clusters, galaxies, nebula, and possibly a few meteors and satellites. Volunteers (and guests, if they wish) bring a variety of telescopes and binoculars.

Directions

Crockett Park is about 20 miles south of Manassas at 10066 Rogues Road (Rt. 602), Midland, VA, 22728. The telephone is[masked]-4867.

From Washington DC/Northern Virginia, go west on I-66 to Exit 43A, US 29 (Lee Highway) toward Gainesville/Warrenton. Follow US[masked] miles approaching Warrenton Stay to the left at the US15/US29 junction to Culpeper/Fredricksburg . Go 1.3 miles past this interchange, exiting onto Meetze Road (643). At Meetze Road, turn left (south) and go 7.5 miles to Rogues Road. There is a sign indicating Crockett Park. Turn right, go a half mile, and you are at CM Crockett Regional Park. The observing area is adjacent to the parking lot to your immediate left as you pass through the park entry gate.

Alternate directions: go west on I-66 to exit 44 (234 South bypass around Manassas). Take 234 bypass approximately 3 miles to Rt. 28 West. Stay on Route 28 for about 13.7 miles through Nokesville, Catlett, and Calverton. Turn right on Rt. 643 (Meetze Rd.) towards Warrenton (Mayhugh's country store is on the corner) Go on about a mile up Rt. 643 to the park entrance road (Rogues Rd.) on the left. Look for a small sign directing you to CM Crockett Park. Once on the park entrance road, go one-half mile to the park gate.

After arriving at the main gate, take the first left into the gravel parking lot. There should be some telescopes setup in the nearby field. Please dim your headlights if you are arriving after dark and please do not drive onto the field.

Preparation begins before leaving home. Dress warmly! Summer nights can still become cold. Please check the weather forecast. For lighting, cover a flashlight in red cellophane (the darker the better). Bring along water to keep hydrated and plan on staying the entire evening or as long as the weather allows. Please dim your vehicles headlights when arriving and departing.

Feel free to walk around and enjoy the sights through the equipment on display but please ask the owner before using. It's best to control children around expensive astronomical equipment. Remember, telescope mirrors are sensitive to cigarette smoke and bug spray. Pets should not be brought onto the observing field.

Crockett has reasonably dark skies, with a limiting magnitude around 5 most nights. It has excellent horizons (Omega Centauri has been observed from Crockett on several occasions), with relatively little light pollution to the south and west. To the north, Manassas is the biggest offender, while to the east an airport beacon can be annoying. GPS coordinates are 38.38'.2"N, -77.43'.15"W or Lat[masked], Lon [masked]

In addition to its virtues as an observing site, Crockett is a nice place to visit during the day. The lake offers fishing and boating (rentals available), and there are several playgrounds for children, as well as picnic pavilions and volleyball courts.

Check out the official website also:

http://www.fauquiercounty.gov/government/departments/parksrec/index.cfm?action=crockett

See You there!

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  • Yvette J

    That's wonderful!!!!! :-)

    June 16, 2013

  • Carmen

    An excellent evening with friendly and informative persons!

    1 · June 16, 2013

  • Yvette J

    The event os a go! :-)

    1 · June 15, 2013

  • Carmen

    Will this still happen today? Just checking.

    June 15, 2013

  • Yvette J

    Being that this is both a daytime and evening event I recommend getting there by 3 or 4 so you can enjoy the Solar observing in case it is cloudy or raining in the evening . Also these events are open to the public our paid members assist by bringing their telescopes . But we also have paid members that do not have scopes as well.

    June 10, 2013

  • John

    Just want to confirm, there is no set time which we have to get in by? I know it was no big deal when I attended here in March. Just making sure. Candice: there will be a lot of other people there. Probably like 50 as they are in the astronomy club and bringing telescopes. our group seems to be a very small subset.

    June 10, 2013

  • taha ( Tom )

    prior engagement

    June 10, 2013

  • Candice P.

    Will there be other people there or just meetup members ?

    June 7, 2013

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