Star Parties in South Florida

Miami's Community Newspapers

Have you seen the satellite moons dancing around Jupiter? Mythology claims Io, Europa, Ganymede and Callisto were Jupiter’s four mistresses. A clever way to keep them in sight! By 6 a.m. weather permitting, early risers may see golden Jupiter leading the parade of planets across the southeast. Brilliant Venus (Morning Star) glows below Jupiter and silver Saturn rises above the southeastern horizon, below Venus. Summer evening constellations, huge Scorpius and the Sagittarian Teapot, now appear at dawn to the right of the planets. Antares, a red supergiant, is known as the `heart’ beating in the Scorpion’s torso. The Teapot (center of our Milky Way Galaxy) closely follows Scorpius.

2/17-2/19 by 6 a.m. Venus descends to meet Saturn rising–they dance together 1 degree apart low in the southeast. Great views in binoculars and cameras. The winter evening skies hold brilliant constellations, delicate star clusters: Pleiades, Hyades and the Beehive; blazing nearby stars: Sirius and Canopus. The International Space Station may be visible on its Miami track.

Binoculars emphasize the beauty and mystery of celestial objects. The portable sizes range from   7 x 35, 8 x 42, 10 x 50 and are comfortable for family use and do not require a tripod. Some Nikon models sell locally for under $100. All phases of the Moon reveal a stunning 3-D image when viewed in binoculars. An easy launch into an exciting family hobby.

Southern Cross Astros are recognized for sharing their love of astronomy and space exploration with the public. They are invited by  Deering at Cutler, Fairchild Tropical Garden, Fruit & Spice Park, Shark Valley in Everglades National Park, ZooMiami to bring their high-tech equipment to their special events during the dry season. The Society invites schools, scouts, college students, military vets, wounded warriors and families to local observing sites Saturdays 8 p.m: Miami-Dade Bill Sadowski Park & Nature Center, SW 176 St. 1/2 mile west of Old Cutler Road, Palmetto Bay 33157and the D’Auria Observatory 23325  SW 217 Ave. Homestead 33031. If your telescope needs to be assembled or checked for repair, qualified Southern Cross Astros are ready to assist you. Future astronomy activities will be scheduled in the classroom Saturday evenings at Bill Sadowski Park. Outdoor astronomy activities are governed by fickle South Florida weather and uncontrolled outdoor light pollution.

Have you seen our nearest star? Weather permitting 2/16th Southern Cross members will offer free and safe solarviewing in hi-tech solarscopes Saturdays 11 a.m. at the ticket entrance to ZooMiami 12400 SW 152 Street. The professional equipment protects your vision 100%.

SCAS is proud to be in its 33rd year associated with the FIU Dept. of Physics. Southern Cross astronomy programs are free and scheduled monthly during the Fall and Spring semesters in the FIU Physics lecture hall  CP-145, Main campus. Friday, 2/15th Colliding Galaxies, 8 p.m.

2/22- Star Party 7-10 p.m.Fruit & Spice Park, 24801 SW 187 Avenue, Homestead. 305-247-5727.
3/15- Star Party, Shark Valley, Everglades National Park, Tamiami Trail.

Take a break from computers and politics. The vast beckoning Cosmos is waiting for you!

SCAS Hotline 305-661-1375


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