Local Star Gazers

Star gazing in Brunswick Heads
Star gazing in Brunswick Heads

G’day, I discovered some local star gazing enthusiasts in the Brunswick Heads last night. I was sitting by the river enjoying a sunset picnic with my mates (as you do) and noticed some people setting up telescopes.

It turns out that Marie and Phil get out and about in Byron Shire, sharing the their wonderful telescopes, amazing knowledge and astronomical enthusiasm with anyone who’s interested.

Last night we were treated to a nice close up view of the half moon, with the Sea of Tranquillity and the Sea of Serenity on display. Marie pointed out the landing spots of the Apollo Missions. The younger star gazers discovered some history and science, us older ones just learned the science becasue we remember the Apollo missions.

Phil then turned the telescope to Jupiter (just above the moon at the moment). Marie told us all about Jupiter and its 67 moons as Phil focused the telescope. Then we saw Jupiter with its rings, then someone spotted the first moon, it was Io, “there’s another one” a child called out, it was Europa. Then we all trained our eyes on the screen, more focusing by Phil, then another moon appeared, “does anyone know what this moon is?”, Marie asked, “Ganymede”, replied a deep voice. We should see 4 moons tonight said Marie, we all strained our eyes looking for the 4th moon, a young voice called out “there it is”, it was Callisto.

The cold started getting the better of us (we were dressed for a sunset picnic not a star grazing evening), and we set off. Phil and Marie have a “Astronomy in Byron Shire” Facebook Group, where you can see where they will pop up next. Thanks guys, it was a real treat.

Australia is a great place for star gazing, I’d suggest you find if their are any local astronomy  enthusiasts near you, and see if you can join them (don’t forget to rug up). Enjoy your journey.

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