What we're about

We are a group of people in the Mid-Hudson Valley who are interested in Astronomy and Science. We hold monthly star parties at Lake Taghkanic State Park, and monthly presentations at SUNY New Paltz -- both open to the public. We also participate in local education and outreach event; our members are available to make presentations or arrange for public observations of the night sky or the sun, and to help beginners learn how to get started in astronomy. When the weather allows, we often set up telescopes on the Walkway Over the Hudson when they hold their Walkway At Night events.

Star parties are generally held on a Friday close to the new moon (with Saturday as a back-up). The dates are listed in our Star Party Schedule (https://sites.google.com/midhudsonastro.org/starpartyschedule). You must register to attend the event (here on Meetup) and for a star party you will need to provide your car's license plate and make and model so we can give that info to the park police. You can see the forecast for viewing conditions on the Lake Taghkanic State Park Clear Sky Chart (http://www.cleardarksky.com/c/LkTagNYkey.html?1). If you will be attending one of our star parties, it may help for you to review our MHAA Etiquette Guide (http://midhudsonastro.spy-hill.net/MHAA_Star_Party_Etiquette_Guide.pdf).

Club events are listed on the MHAA Google Calendar (https://calendar.google.com/calendar?cid=MDdkNHJrMHJpcXMyM2ZlOWhoOWg3ZmFlMzhAZ3JvdXAuY2FsZW5kYXIuZ29vZ2xlLmNvbQ). Both our Star Parties and our Monthly Presentations are open to the public. Our Monthly Presentations are preceded by a club business meeting.

Recordings of our public presentations, star parties, and some other activities are available on our YouTube channel: https://www.youtube.com/channel/UC3j-Xd6MJunQSuXNc9HJqUw and some of our events are also announced (and broadcast and recorded) on Facebook: http://www.facebook.com/mhastro

If you are interested in becoming a member of MHAA you can follow these instructions (http://join.midhudsonastro.org/). Annual dues are $25, which we use to support our activities, including insurance for our star parties and paying for Zoom. Members can borrow club telescopes or DVDs from our collection, and can participate in discussions on our Slack discussion channels (https://midhudsonastro.slack.com/) and our members' mailing list at http://mhaa.groups.io .

Because of the COVID-19 pandemic we are currently holding our monthly meetings online using Zoom. If you are unfamiliar with Zoom then please take a look at our MHAA Zoom Guide (https://sites.google.com/a/midhudsonastro.org/join/mhaa-zoom-guide).

If you have any questions, send them to questions@midhudsonastro.org

Upcoming events (3)

Planetary Archaeology: Exploring the Final Stages of Planetary Life Cycles

Sam Grunblatt will investigate some of the shortest planetary systems found around red giant stars. Then he will compare these systems to similar extreme systems found around main sequence stars and discuss how these extremely inhospitable worlds can teach us about the fate of our own solar system. Then he will talk about what we can learn from studying red giant star some selves, and how they could be the key to finding the first planet from another galaxy in the near future. For questions call Alex[masked] or Tim[masked]

November 2021 Star Party

Lake Taghkanic State Park

Enjoy the night sky away from the bright lights of the towns and cities in our area! The night will be dark - perfect for star gazing. Bring your own telescopes and binoculars or use those provided by our members. A telescope is not required.

Telescope operators arrive about 30 minutes early to set up. Observing begins about an hour after sunset and will probably end around 11, or whenever club members decide. All will take place at the park's West Beach parking lot.

ALL PARTICIPANTS MUST WEAR MASKS AND MAINTAIN 6 FEET OF DISTANCE FROM OTHERS. The number of people will be limited to 50 in one group. The lot where we meet is large enough for two groups if needed.

You must RSVP with your car's make, model, and license plate number at least one day beforehand. This info is required by and sent to Park management, the State Police, and the State Park Police because we are there after park hours. If you attend without being on the list and the police show up, the consequences can include revocation of our permit for after hours use.

Please review our guide to star party etiquette if you have not been to one of our star parties before: http://midhudsonastro.spy-hill.net/MHAA_Star_Party_Etiquette_Guide.pdf

You can see the Clear Sky Chart for Lake Taghkanic State Park at the address below. It will show various viewing conditions (cloud cover, transparency, darkness) as well as temperature, wind, etc.
http://www.cleardarksky.com/c/LkTagNYkey.html

Note: Winter and late Fall viewing conditions can be very clear - but also very cold. As you'll be standing around looking at the stars for a while you may feel even colder than otherwise when outdoors. Dress warmly and consider bringing extra layers in case you get colder as the night goes on.

For further information text/call Tim Denman at[masked]

December 2021 Star Party

Lake Taghkanic State Park

Enjoy the night sky away from the bright lights of the towns and cities in our area! The night will be dark - perfect for star gazing. Bring your own telescopes and binoculars or use those provided by our members. A telescope is not required.

Telescope operators arrive about 30 minutes early to set up. Observing begins about an hour after sunset and will probably end around 11, or whenever club members decide. All will take place at the park's West Beach parking lot.

ALL PARTICIPANTS MUST WEAR MASKS AND MAINTAIN 6 FEET OF DISTANCE FROM OTHERS. The number of people will be limited to 50 in one group. The lot where we meet is large enough for two groups if needed.

You must RSVP with your car's make, model, and license plate number at least one day beforehand. This info is required by and sent to Park management, the State Police, and the State Park Police because we are there after park hours. If you attend without being on the list and the police show up, the consequences can include revocation of our permit for after hours use.

Please review our guide to star party etiquette if you have not been to one of our star parties before: http://midhudsonastro.spy-hill.net/MHAA_Star_Party_Etiquette_Guide.pdf

You can see the Clear Sky Chart for Lake Taghkanic State Park at the address below. It will show various viewing conditions (cloud cover, transparency, darkness) as well as temperature, wind, etc.
http://www.cleardarksky.com/c/LkTagNYkey.html

Note: Winter and late Fall viewing conditions can be very clear - but also very cold. As you'll be standing around looking at the stars for a while you may feel even colder than otherwise when outdoors. Dress warmly and consider bringing extra layers in case you get colder as the night goes on.

For further information text/call Tim Denman at[masked]

Past events (498)

The Role of Magnetic Fields in Star Formation

Online event

Photos (617)