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Thread: 2017 Calhoun Stargaze - Registration Now Open

  1. #1
    Member deepskytraveler's Avatar
    Join Date
    Feb 2012
    Wheaton, IL USA

    2017 Calhoun Stargaze - Registration Now Open

    Calhoun StarGaze 2017 Announcement:

    Come join regional Amateur Astronomers at the Calhoun County Dark Skies Park in West Virginia on Friday, May 19th thru Sunday, May 21st 2017 for the 2nd annual Calhoun Stargaze Starparty Convention!

    Calhoun County Park, located just south of Grantsville WV, is one of the darkest spots in the Eastern U.S. Skies at Calhoun can easily reach 7th magnitude. SQM readings regularly pass 21.5. The park is located a little NW of the center of West Virginia, and sits on a ridge with an elevation of around 1,100-ft.
    The lower elevation of Calhoun vs. other mountainous sites in WV gives the park a key advantage as a year-round site. The park has several ridge top locations to set up on and a large flat open field to handle several hundred observers. Much of the park is mowed.

    The park offers an on-site campground, as well as a renovated barn that has been converted into a local community center. Calhoun County Park recreational areas include hiking and bike trails weaving through the grounds, and a number of playground areas, a basketball court, ball diamond, fishing ponds, and abundant natural wildlife to enjoy. There’s also a ‘Historical Village’ with many period vintage buildings from the 1800’s.

    Calhoun County Dark Skies Park will make a great ‘astronomical’ destination.
    The nighttime skies at Calhoun are among the best east of the Mississippi. Regardless of season, the Milky-Way can easily be followed from one horizon to the next. There are just a couple of small light domes, one to the Northeast, and one to the West. The sky from the Southwest thru South to the Eastern horizon is pitch dark, as you are looking straight towards the Appalachian Mountains, with little to no residential or commercial development. And at 38 degrees Latitude, the constellations are a lot higher than experienced at more northern locations.

    A small campground within the park provides seven campsites with water and electrical hookups at each site. Shower and restroom facilities are located in the Red Barn/Community Building. Additionally, the upstairs of the Red Barn is available for limited sleeping bag use.
    Both the campground and upstairs Red Barn sleeping space will be available to participants on a first-contact RSVP reservation basis. Other than the flat observing field, the rest of the park is generally hilly, and electrical outlets are few. If you have not reserved a campground or Red Barn spot in advance, please come prepared to camp outdoors with limited or no electric.
    (a battery charging station will be available at the Red Barn).

    As we are in the process of building out site facilities at the park, attendance for this year is limited to a total of 50 registrations, so please RSVP no later than Friday May 5th! The cost of the two night camping event is only $30 USD per family, and includes dinner on Friday, three meals on Saturday, and a farewell breakfast on Sunday. For Saturday overnight, the cost is only $20. Those interested in attending for just the day program on Saturday, we are asking for a $10 donation.
    A program event schedule will be available soon.

    To register for the event, please use the following:

    We look forward to seeing you at Calhoun in the fall!

    For more information, please visit the following:
    Clear Skies,

    Mark Friedman
    Wheaton, IL USA
    15" f/4.5 Obsession Classic #973
    Stellarvue SV90TBV

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Jun 2016
    Richmond VA
    I have to work that weekend in May. I'd like to visit later in the year.
    18" f/3.5 Teeter Dob,
    82mm Kowa Binos
    Richmond Va

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