By Sue Rose—
Happy New Year, let us hope that this one will be better than the last two. Unfortunately, with the increasing virus cases, our in-person meetings will have to wait. Not to worry, Jason has done an outstanding job of obtaining amazing and fascinating speakers from around the world and he will continue to invite those with incredible astronomical tales to tell. We are greatly indebted to him, so please keep tuning in. Members have access to recordings of recent presentations if you miss one. Our next meeting, January 9th, will again be digital as Hofstra University continues to be closed to non-University groups. The Cradle of Aviation has offered us space, but we will wait until the virus situation settles down before exploring that further.
We greatly appreciate all those who have graciously given us their time on a Sunday afternoon and for those who we will visit with in the upcoming months. Many thanks to Dr. Mike Pavelec and Don Machholz for their excellent presentations in December. Our first guest speaker of the new year will be Chuck Allen, VP of the Astronomical League. Mr. Allen will fill us in on what’s happening with the League in 2022 and discuss “EXTREME ASTRONOMY! A wonderful summary of current record holders, on earth and celestial as well.” If you haven’t planned a summer vacation yet, the first in-person ALCON (fingers crossed) in 3 years will take place in Albuquerque, NM, July 28-31, ending with a visit to the Very Large Array (VLA.) We recently had a virtual tour of this facility, and to see it in person would be amazing. Visit www.astroleague.org for more information. Hoping to see you there. Keep watching the hotline and website for updates to the speaker schedule. While out in New Mexico, start looking for places to view the October 14, 2023 annular solar eclipse and even start planning for the next totality on April 8, 2024. It’s never too early!
We hope to have our new AOSNY permit for our designated observing area at Jones Beach in early January. Announcements will be made on the club hotline. I don’t expect we’ll be able to observe from there during the January 2nd New Moon weekend, but January 28–30, February 4–6 & 25–27 should be available so mark your calendars. As those dates are limited, you might consider getting a NYS StarGazers permit which allows access to other areas and is not limited by date or time. The method of purchase, and cost, have not yet been determined. Closer to the new year, go to the Parks Department web page for details.
Happy Perihelion. On January 4th at 1:52 A.M.Eastern Time, Earth will be 91,406,842 miles away from the Sun, its closest approach of 2022.
And finally, wishing everyone a safe and healthy New Year on behalf of the Amateur Observers’ Society of New York.