Hello Sunshine! Time for some solar observing!
The Royal Astronomical Society of Ottawa does a ton of free public outreach work. Mike is a member and has always loved the interactions with his fellow astronomers as well as the public. It’s time well spent, perhaps to spark the imagination of the next Carl Sagan, or to start someone down as lifelong past of curiosity and love of our universe and all its amazing features, our Cosmos, as a wonderful gentleman remarked, that is what we’re looking at:)
A total of 6 volunteers came out with their telescopes big and small to show the public a view of our sun. Mike Mogdaham from the RASC had a tent sent up with free giveaways, how to buy your first telescopes, planespheres to give you an idea of what you are looking at in the night sky and solar sunglasses. Glad he had the tent set up, we nearly did not drive the hour to Kanata due to the high clouds but Mike made some arrangement with the weather gods it seems and a beautiful blue sky prevailed. The Festival we were at was the 2017 Kanata-Carlton Cultural Festival. It was a wonderful mix of dance, song, poetry and community outreach. How wonderful it is to be in Canada…the security guards stopped by for a few views as well, no guns, just a patrol…how sweet is that!
The different scopes provided different views of the sun depending on their filters, Mike’s is Hydrogen-Alpha, so you can see solar prominences, others were white light filters that enabled you to see sunspot activity.
With the background music (some good, some not so good right Eric;) and the different dancers and costumes about it was a thoroughly enjoyable afternoon! There was a lot of talking and explaining going on, as well as inviting folks out to the Royal Astronomical Society of Canada’s Ottawa chapter’s free meetings, and their free public Star Parties they hold regularly to offer views of the night sky and to help beginners learn how to use their telescopes.
Time well spent in good company on a wonderful Saturday afternoon, we look forward to many more this summer! It is a wonderful group in Ottawa and hopefully a few sparks were started so a career or two in the sciences might be followed and some curiosity stirred up for some young, and older at this wonderful event-Until next time! Saludos amigos and stay tuned!