The Fred Bay Observatory at Hisey Park will be open to the public from 6:30 to 8:30 p.m. on Saturday, Jan. 8.
The weather forecast calls for clouds; if the sky does not cooperate for visual observations with our big telescope, we'll move indoors. We have a virtual version of our January sky tour planned.
Members of the Warren County Astronomical Society are invited to bring their telescopes to share views if we do get a break in the clouds; or, set them up indoors for visitors and other members to learn about your rigs.
Visitors also have been invited to bring telescopes they may have received as gifts; if they have questions or want help to set up and learn more about how to use their new scopes, our members can help. It will be a terrific way to welcome the public to our astronomy hobby.
I look forward to seeing you tomorrow at Hisey Park.
WCAS Vice President
Application Form http://www.warrensky.org/App/641_form.html
send check to the below mailing address
Warren County Astronomical Society Mailing Address
c/o Warren County Park District
1267 N. State Route 741
Lebanon, Ohio 45036
Warren County Astronomical Society Base Location
Hisey Park [Warren County]
5443 Middletown Rd.
Corwin, OH 45068
Information on Warren County Hisey Park : http://www.co.warren.oh.us/parks/parks_list/hisey.htm
It is with the most profound of saddness that I have to announce the passing of Fred Bay yesterday afternoon due to complications associated with COVID 19.
Fred was one of my most dearest of friends, a warm, generous fellow who was always upbeat and positive. Fred was absolutely instrumental and vital in the starting and development of WCAS and this website but also the observatories at Camp Joy and Hisey Park, all of which would simply not have happenned without Fred. Thousands of people, especially children, have seen with great clarity the wonders of the universe, stuff they had never, ever, seen before, because of Fred's efforts. I could share some very warm and heart felt stories of how Fred could, simply by being Fred, engage with kids at Camp Joy. He had a very special gift for that.
Fred was also a long time volunteer Warren County Parks Commissioner and was instrumental in bringing me onto the Commission as well....so he did make a few mistakes, but, hopefully, that was a minor one.
I shall miss my friend.
Goodbye my frind but I know you have a much better view of the stars now than you could ever have back here on Earth.
Please take a moment to remember Fred and pray for his family during their grief, especially Judy his wife, who is also a most remarkable person who has also contributed mightly to our astro-lives.
WCAS "clubhouse", Hisey Park in the "red farmhouse" seen from the overlook
Welcome to the Warren County Astronomical Society website. This society is organized for the enjoyment of astronomy for charitable, educational and scientific purposes and is located at Warren County (OH) Hisey Park, a dark sky area.
Hisey Park Fall Festival and Fred Bay Memorial Tribute
At the very start of the annual Hisey Park Fall Festival, 11:00 AM on Saturday, October 2, there will be a brief memorial service for the late Mr. Fred Bay, one of our co-founders here at WCAS and long time Warren County Park Commissioner. Fred was/is also one of my dearest friends. As part of the memorial service, the Warren County Parks District will dedicate and name the observatory after Fred. There will also be a nice landscaped area adjacent to the observatory, including two benches (one for Fred and one for his surviving wife Judy) and a nice granite plaque in Fred's memory.
Please, please,please, come on out to that Saturday to pay our respects to Fred. The Observatories at Hisey Park and Camp Joy just would not have come about without Fred's activism for these projects and love for our hobby.
Also, the Hisey Festival is just- plain-fun and I highly recommend you stick around and enjoy the festivities for the whole family. And it's free. I would really like some of you members to bring out your scopes and set them up for folks to see. Weather permitting, I also want to put on a star party in the evening too. We are long overdue for one and what a great time to reconnect together to enjoy our hobby and share it with others.
Here's a photo of the great Orion Nebula M42, taken by club member Eric Africa. He has graciously given me permission to post it on our site. Grat work Eric!
Some specifics for you gear/astrophoto heads:
1. This is a stack of 4 x 30-second images taken in the "raw" format.
2. ISO 400
3. Canon t6i DSLR
4. TMB 152 F8 triplet APO, prime focus, no field flattner
5. AP 1200GTO mounting.
With a bit of Photoshop trickery, Eric was able to bring out the bit of the Running Man that fit in this FOV (upper left corner). He also notes that this is resized to 50% of the original. I really like how Eric preserved resolution of the Trapezium cluster in the middle of the nebula
With a bit of Photoshop trickery, I was able to bring out the bit of the Running Man that fit in this FOV (upper left corner). Note that this is resized to 50% of the original.
This comet has put on a very nice show for us over the past week, being visible (even to the "naked" eye) low in the north west evening sky, starting about 9:45 PM.
During a spur of the moment "comet party" this past Tuesday evening, July 14, 2020, we had 17 - 18 Society and general public members (hard to count in the dark, especially as those being counted move around) show up at Hisey Park to view the comet. Last night, Friday, July 17, we had about 10-11 people show up, three of whom just happened be at Hisey Park, using the dog parks & runs there. We caught their attention and motioned them up to the observatory. They stayed till almost midnight (That’s what's so cool about the Warren County Observatory at Hisey Park...you go there to walk your dog and end up getting a tour of the universe.).
The full extent of the comet, including its sweeping tail is best seen with a good pair of binoculars. However, the close up view of the comet's nucleolus with the big telescope was wonderful too as you could not only see the intense, almost "stellar" core of the comet (which is only three miles in diameter), but also the gas jets sweeping majestically out and fanning backward, away from the sun. Magical really.
When comet Neowise had set (or behind clouds!) we turned the big scope to Jupiter, Saturn, some double stars, a globular cluster and other "deep sky" objects (faint fuzzies...some of them not so faint though). There were lots of "oooohs", "aaah" and OMG's especially with Saturn (always a crowd pleaser) and globular cluster M13 (with that "diamond dust on black velvet" effect on full display).
We wrapped it up and closed the observatory at about 12:30....AM. Tired, but a wonderful mid summer's night dream (ok, ok, it's a shameless Shakespeare rip off but it certainly applied).
I have also posted here a couple of shots of Comet Neowise taken at Hisey Park by Society member Steve Smith. Well done Steve!
I also want to thank everybody who attended for wearing masks and social distancing. Another well done!
Hisey Park Observatory Dedication
Hutzel Observatory at Camp Joy
Seven Minutes of Terror
The Great American Eclipse of 2017
Photo provided by Dr Dieter Schmidt
Taken in Castle Rock, CO by Doug Bay
(notice the drone in the photo)
Photo taken by Judy Bay at 2:32pm edst 8/21/2017
(Mercury visible at about 11 o'clock)
taken at Tenneco Lake Loudin, Tennessee
Fred Bay, Jeff Blazey and friend (Steve Brunker)
Construction is completed at
The Warren County Observatory at WC Hisey Park
Warren County Astronomical Society
The Warren County Parks District has purchased a 16' observatory dome and an 8.75" F12 refracting telescope and heavy duty mount have been donated as well. With your help and that of the Parks District, the Warren County Parks Observatory will hopefully open in fall of 2017!
WCAS Monthly Meeting April 17th
First WCAS hosted event at Hutzel Observatory. Cub Scouts from Lebanon, Ohio
The Opening October 3rd, 2014
photo courtesy Walt Davis (note the rainbows)
It was cold, and rainy, and windy, all day on Friday. We had determined in advance to go ahead with the dedication ceremony even if we could not open the roof and use the telescope. Less than an hour before the scheduled beginning, as guests were arriving, the wind stopped, the rain stopped, the sky cleared and a warming sun came out in a perfectly clear sky. You sort of had to be there, but most of were thinking this had to be Providence, that we were getting some help from above. If you had any doubt about that, the clincher arrived precisely at 7:00, the scheduled start time. Have a look.
We had a very successful opening, with about 200 guests attending to see the amazing building, the magnificent engravings, and the awe-inspiring telescope. The skies darkened and remained clear, a vivid moon shone directly above, we opened the roof, and a long line formed to mount the viewing platform and see the lunar geography, up close and personal. It was so great to hear every little kid and almost all adults put their eye to the eyepiece on the telescope, and say “Oh Wow!” In these days of video games and 3D movies, it doesn’t get any better than that. If you missed it, make arrangements with Camp Joy or the Warren County Astronomical Society to take the family and friends out for a great night of exploring our Universe. http://www.wcas-oh.org/class_index.cfm
(More photos posted on left hand tab <<<<entitled "Grand Opening 10/3/2014")
At the first general meeting on Friday September 19th, several surveys were taken by those in attendance. The first survey was one of "Personal Interests" and the second was "Possible Educational Topics". These surveys will help to guide us as we move forward into the future.
Here are the survey results:
Visual Astronomy (viewing) 100%
Trip to special sites (such as Grren Bank radio tel.) 82%
Astro-Imaging (Deep Sky) 73%
Astro-Imaging (Planetary) 73%
Building up Hisey Park for viewing purposes 73%
Involvement with Camp Joy (teaching astronomy) 73%
Involvement in projects at both Hisey Park and Camp Joy 73%
Education (Basic Astronomy & current events) 64%
Education (Advanced Astronomy discussions) 64%
Visiting other observatories & planetariums 55%
Education - teaching astronomy to school kids and scouts 55%
Equipment discussion "Show & Tell" 55%
Education on Hutzel Observatory software 36%
Radio-Astronomy (non-visual wavelengths 27%
Solar scientific observation 27%
Lens Making 18%
Telescope making 18%
Spectrum Analysis (of light from stars) 18%
Organizing Observation & Fundrasing
Interface with Observatory Foundation
Basics on using telescopes
Possible Educational Topics
Introduction to astronomy 80%
Planning observing sessions 70%
Mars, Saturn,exo-planets 60%
Equipment Basics 50%
Astronomy for Scouts 50%
Motion due to orbit 20%
Motion due to rotation 20%
Craters of the moon 10%
Space Travel 10%
Thanks to all who attended and participated.
Getting close to showtime
We have grass!
The granite map is nearing completion
New pictures (7/12/2014) of Laying the sidewalk pavers & Landscaping at the Rachel Hutzel Observatory. Check them out under the Rachel Hutzel Observatory tab on the left hand side <<<<<<
New pictures of the ceremony thanking those from the Warren County Career Center who built the Rachel A. Hutzel Observatory. Check them out by clicking on the "WCCC Ceremony" tab on the left hand side <<<
"Warren County, the telescope has been installed & Calibrated !"
Thanks to some of the people from (WCCC) who made it a reality !
Construction pictures -- check under "Rachel Hutzel Observatory" on the left hand tab<<<.
There is a new tab showing the "Installation of the telescope" at Camp Joy<<<
Articles from "The Planetary Society"
Courtesy of Ken Katowik
Groundbreaking for the Rachel A. Hutzel Observatory at Camp Joy
<<<<<<(Click on the Rachel Hutzel Observatory tab on left hand side)
(courtesy of Joe Tarkany)
photo courtesy of D. Griggs (taken in Death Valley)
Clear Sky Chart - Warren County Hisey Park Area