What we're about

"Amateur" is not an insult.

An amateur astronomer is anybody who learns the skies. Anybody who may learn how to observe or photograph the incomprehensibly distant and huge objects out there. Anybody who may learn about spaceflight, or space in popular culture, or scientific history, or cosmology. Especially anybody who shares this knowledge with others - not because it's a paid occupation, not for recognition or praise, but because they love it.

The Warren Astronomical Society ( http://www.warrenastro.org ) meets twice monthly indoors to share presentations about astronomy: observations, science, culture, and history.

Of course, we also get together underneath the stars: one to two public open houses per month and many informal members-only observing nights at our observatory, Stargate. Whether you're an experienced stargazer or need help learning your telescope, you're sure to find somebody to talk to.

Members have the opportunity to check out telescopes and other equipment with a minimal deposit. If you're interested in getting into astronomy but don't know what sort of telescope you'd like, a risk-free trial can be a great help. Attend an event and find out just how much a committed amateur can do.

Upcoming events (4+)

Mtg&Talks

Link visible for attendees

At the Warren Astronomical Society's Cranbrook meetings, we spend the first hour or so of the meeting on club business and observing reports, then have two presentations, one short and one full-length.

Main Talk: In Defense of Astrology
By G. M. Ross, W.A.S., G.R.A.A.
Clayton V. Carey, G.R.A.A.
Those involved in or interested in the natural sciences have good reason to reject the astrology of the ubiquitous "daily horoscope", as pablum for the masses. On the other hand, when allowing for man's relationship with the world and vast heavens, one should be more tolerant. We are in the midst of mighty forces and works of nature. Rational people look for order, connections, and so some security. Daily life can be hard and discouraging. Rulers want to be aggrandised. We will not present a history of astrology, but historical development is unavoidable, especially given the relationship between astrology and astronomy. For millennia there was symbiosis. Is it sensible to want to believe in heavenly interactions with life on Earth? Yes.

Short Talk: Simulating Spiral Galaxies: The Quasi Static Density Wave Theory
By Jeff MacLeod
Galaxies are one of the least understood structures in astronomy. Simulating them is so computationally demanding that many things are still not well understood. But emulating (cheating) can get us remarkably close. The Density Wave Theory (QSDW) attempts to explain what galactic spiral arms are. Jeff will break down the theory and in doing so demonstrate how well it can emulate what we observe in spiral galaxies.

Immediately after each Cranbrook meeting of the Warren Astronomical Society, a number of Club members go to the Redcoat Tavern (31542 Woodward Ave., Royal Oak, MI 48073) for food and/or drink and informal chat. Guests are also invited to join us there.

Directions: Head south on Woodward. The Redcoat will be on your left, on the east side of Woodward, two blocks north of 13 Mile and just north of Burger King. Make a Michigan left and find parking either in front or the large back lot.

If you would like to present either a short talk (10-15 minutes) or a full-length talk (45-60 minutes) at a future meeting, please email Bob Trembley at [masked].

The views expressed in presentations are those of the speakers and do not necessarily represent, and should not be attributed to, the Warren Astronomical Society.

Mtg & Talk

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We are holding a VIRTUAL "Macomb" meeting this month due to the COVID-19 pandemic.

The Warren Astronomical Society meets monthly on the third Thursday in a room in the library (Building J) at Macomb Community College's South Campus. We meet in Room 221, just to the left of the main desk.

We do a bit of club business early on, then have a major presentation usually put together by one of our members.

After each WAS Macomb meeting, some club members get together to continue to the discussion in a more free-form way at the National Coney Island on Van Dyke just north of 12 Mile. This is an opportunity to further discuss astronomy in an informal environment for about an hour or so. All members and guests are invited to join us there.

If you would like to present a short talk (5-15 minutes) or a long talk (40-60 minutes) at a future meeting, please email Bob Trembley at [masked].

The views expressed in presentations are those of the speakers and do not necessarily represent, and should not be attributed to, the Warren Astronomical Society.

Stargate Observatory Open House

Needs a location

It's our mostly-monthly public open house: you get to use our equipment and our volunteers' knowledge to see what's out there in the sky tonight.

These event times are guidelines; we meet later during the summer and earlier during the winter. Please call the Stargate Committee if you want to check if we're out: http://warrenastro.org/was/contact-us/

We usually stay as long as the skies are clear and there are interested observers - usually around midnight, but on nice nights even later.

You don't have to stay the whole time - though we ask that you aim your headlights away from the observing field in case you have to leave early. Feel free to email us (http://www.warrenastro.org/was/contactUs.aspx) if you have any questions.

We only require a few things for your safety and enjoyment:
With the COVID situation, masks are recommended, mandatory for children.

Please plan to be at the observatory before dark. Be careful with headlights on your way in, especially after sundown. Make sure to turn the dome lights off if possible, and park your car facing away from the observing field if you have running lights. The park prefers that all vehicles park along the road but you may see some vehicles parked near the observatory. They are usually club members with large telescopes set up for you to look through.

Please don't use white light flashlights when others are observing. Others will have flashlights, but if you'd like to bring your own, you can easily make a red-light flashlight that will help you get around in the dark and is safe for night vision. You can read ideas here (http://cs.astronomy.com/asycs/forums/t/10521.aspx).

No alcoholic beverages are permitted.

Other advice to help you make the most of your evening:

Weather, especially in Michigan, is unpredictable. We are always (some might say irrationally) hopeful, but if there's a solid chance of an extended downpour we are not likely to do any observing! If you're not sure about the weather, call Riyad Matti (http://www.warrenastro.org/was/officers.aspx) to check if the open house has been canceled.
Observing is an outside activity, so dress accordingly - a little warmer than the temperature would indicate. Even in the summer, it can get surprisingly chilly at night. Like any other activity, the key to lasting is layers, layers, layers! In the wintertime and early spring, plan to wear at least two layers of every garment: socks, pants, and a shirt. Core temperature is important too, so pay extra attention to keeping your torso warm - an insulated vest can work wonders.

Importantly, the Camp Rotary grounds have full-service public restrooms, with warm running water and other modern conveniences.

If there's something specific you'd like to see, we'll do our best to make it happen. We have safe, filtered solar telescopes to look at the sun in amazing detail (http://www.warrenastro.org/was/astro_photos/detail.aspx?id=25501605@N07&photo=2402535178) before it gets dark; if you're interested in seeing our local star, let us know and we'll try to make a telescope available.
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We accept donations via PayPal (https://www.paypal.com/cgi-bin/webscr?cmd=_s-xclick&hosted_button_id=3MHHRBMAK5WFA) to help us educate and inspire the general public. We are a 501(c)(3) tax-deductible public charity, and we would be happy to send you a donation receipt for your tax purposes.

Mtg&Talks

Link visible for attendees

At the Warren Astronomical Society's Cranbrook meetings, we spend the first hour or so of the meeting on club business and observing reports, then have two presentations, one short and one full-length.

Main Talk: to be announced soon!

Short Talk: to be announced soon too!

Immediately after each Cranbrook meeting of the Warren Astronomical Society, a number of Club members go to the Redcoat Tavern (31542 Woodward Ave., Royal Oak, MI 48073) for food and/or drink and informal chat. Guests are also invited to join us there.

Directions: Head south on Woodward. The Redcoat will be on your left, on the east side of Woodward, two blocks north of 13 Mile and just north of Burger King. Make a Michigan left and find parking either in front or the large back lot.

If you would like to present either a short talk (10-15 minutes) or a full-length talk (45-60 minutes) at a future meeting, please email Bob Trembley at [masked].

The views expressed in presentations are those of the speakers and do not necessarily represent, and should not be attributed to, the Warren Astronomical Society.

Past events (634)

Stargate Observatory Open House

Needs a location

Photos (574)