Scenes from International Observe the Moon Night 2019

Darrell Heath of the Central Arkansas Astronomical Society shared this photo from their Moon observing at the Pinnacle Mountain State Par Star Party! Darrell adds, "CAAS has recently purchased a Mallincam HD-10 and a AAXA M6 projector in order to do video astronomy with our visitors.  We can project live feed images of the moon and other objects, zoom in on lunar features and Apollo landing sites.  It has proven to be a big hit, especially for InOMN." 

On October 5, 2019, people around the world celebrated International Observe the Moon Night! Night Sky Network member clubs across the United States shared their telescopes and knowledge with the public, showing people unforgettable views of the Moon and answering curious questions about our nearest celestial neighbor. The following photos were all submitted alongside each club's event reports using the Night Sky Network's event log system. 

people standing around telescope

Volunteers from the Warren Rupp Observatory and Richland Astronomical Society worked with the Knox County Parks District at Honey Run Highlands Park to help visitors observe the Moon with great success, as seen in this photo by Lori Totman, the Director of the Knox County Parks District. Lori also adds, "We were "over the Moon" last evening as 38 people attended our "Observe The Moon" program presented by Chad Ruhl, who is one of our Ohio Certified Volunteer Naturalist (OCVN) and a member of the Richland Astronomical Society. Activities were for all ages. Art Crim, our KCPD staff was able to capture the Moon through his phone camera and Chad's telescope. Thank you Chad Ruhl for this amazing presentation and to OCVN's Jim Heironimus and Patty Burdette for their assistance. We greatly appreciate these Ohio Certified Volunteer Naturalists and the wonderful programs they bring to the Park District!"

children looking through telescope

Girl Scouts earned their Space Science badges at their Astronomy Day event with assistance from the Westminster Astronomical Society, seen in this photo shared by Laurie V Ansorge.

women showing child meteorites
Jerelyn Ramirez of the Kansas Astronomical Observers helps a young visitor prepare to look through the telescope, in this photo by Paul Ramirez. Jerelyn reports, "Clear night to observe the Moon from the south side of the library. We used many activities revolving around the Moon. One of the patrons thought it was very helpful how we used an activity in one of the toolkits to explain why the image is upside down when looking at the concave side of the spoon. She thought that was quite inspired. It was a small gathering but a good one. What was to be an hour and a half event turned into a 3 hour event. The Moon phase cards were very helpful with the patrons."

people looking at a table full of Moon-related papers and items

Thick clouds didn't stop the folks from sharing the wonders of the Moon at the Gaithersberg Community Musuem and Latitude Observatory, as Karen Yottes notes: "Skies were overcast, but we brought the Moon with us in the form of the Moon banner from NSN so visitors could tour the Moon....Despite overcast skies people stayed until the end of the program. We had to have lights by the activities as it got dark. Also, we had some technical difficulties for the talk, but people stayed to hear it. We had a lot of new visitors and a lot of interest."

woman looking through telescope at sunset

The weather was thankfully less dramatic than expected for the Northeast Florida Astronomical Society's event at Hanna Park!  Ted Treiber, who also shared the photo above, reports, "Despite the dire weather forecast, the meteorologist giving the forecast did give the International Observe the Moon Night a plug. An international event vs. the weather forecast seemed to balance out and we were at about 50% of capacity at the club's seaside event location!"

large amount of people gathering around telescopes in a park at sunset

Leonard Ward shared Frank Kane's photo of the crowd gathering at the beginning of the Central Florida Astronomical Society's event at Trotwood Park!

telescopes on tripods set up at sunset

This photo by Barbara Moore of the Amateur Astronomers Group shows their telescope lineup on October 4. Her group set up a day before the official Observe the Moon Night, at the New Mexico Museum of Space Science, due to an event conflict. The Moon still looked great a day early!
the Moon rising over an observatory at sunset

The dome is almost ready to open up for the crowds - and the Moon- in this photo by John Blackwell of the Phillips Exeter Academy, who also celebrated International Observe the Moon Night a day early due to scheduling demands. John adds, "What a wonderful evening: cool fall night with clear skies and falling temperatures. The moon at first quarter was our primary target in both low and high magnifications through the 16" scope. We then surprised the crowd with views of Saturn and its brighter moons. Lots of "oohs" and "aahs" to be heard as people gazed in wonder. We finished the night with a laser tour of the summer and early fall constellations." 

man showing people the insides of a telescope with a red flashlight

Murky skies didn't stop members of the Lowcountry Stargazers from sharing their time and telescopes with curious visitors, as you can see in this photo by L. Cason. Jay Messeroff reports, "The club held our first public event at Johns Island County Park since the Spring on Saturday, 5 October 2019. Clouds covered the sky but four members and seven visitors were present to talk Astronomy. A newly donated small telescope provided some use for a few children that participated but conditions did not warrant setting up larger scopes. After the visitors had gone, the Moon and Jupiter made very brief appearances through the clouds. Better luck next month!"

large crowd at night looking through telescopes

Visitors eagerly line up to observe the Moon and Saturn through the telescopes of volunteers from the Astronomers of Humboldt, in this photo by Grace Wheeler. Grace adds, "International Observe the Moon Night coincided with Eureka's monthly Arts Alive event. There was huge turnout of people wandering around on a warm and clear Saturday evening. Everyone was excited to see up setting up telescopes on the plaza. We showed them Venus, Saturn, Jupiter, and the Moon. Many had never seen the planets or Moon through a telescope, and were fascinated by the views. The craters and mountains of the Moon, Saturn's rings, and the Galilean moons made a big impression. This was the first outreach event for new AOH member Daniela (a student who is taking astronomy at College of the Redwoods). We had her run a couple of the telescopes and she really enjoyed it. One of the long-time member who hasn't done an outreach event in several years also joined us. We put him to work running one of telescopes, and he also had a great time engaging with the public."

image of the Moon taken through a telescope

And of course, the Moon itself, the main feature of the night! Ray Blumhorst took this photo of the Moon at the Los Angeles Astronomical Society's Public Star Party event at the iconic Griffith Observatory. Andee Sherwood reports, "Griffith was packed full of visitors and tourists last night. Many of the club members celebrated IOMN by focusing their telescopes on the Moon. Others focused on Saturn and various other objects in the sky." 

Salute to everyone who helped make this year's Internaitonal Observe the Moon Night such a smashing success, and may next year prove even more fun! 
Last Updated: November 20, 2019
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