ALP NAW Stargazing Session Report



February 19-20, 2005

Text & Images by James Kevin Ty


Astronomical League of the Philippines (ALP) in cooperation with UP-NISMED celebrated National Astronomy Week (NAW) by staging together a star party at the roofdeck of  UP-NISMED last February 19-20.  The stargazing session started at around 6:30pm. 

Earlier around 3:00pm, ALPers Edmund Rosales, Allen Yu, Janice Rochelle Ponce and Ligaya Santos went to Loyola Cemetery (Marikina) to visit the grave of our fellow amateur astronomer Socrates dela Cruz to remember his 3rd Death Anniversary.  ALP president James Kevin Ty was supposed to join them but was not able to join as he accidentally sustained a nasty cut in his right  eyebrow thus needed to have it checked at Metro Hospital :(  But this didn't prevented him from still attending to the star party that night.

Among the members of the ALP who attended the party were James Kevin Ty, Allen Yu, Edmund Rosales, Alice Villa-Real, Jonathan Ty, Jon Alcartado, Rich Pijuan, Lea Visaya, Dante Cruz, Jett Aguilar and his family, Melisa Bata, Angie Tan and her friends Sheilah Marie and Jennifer See, John Lawrence Uy, Jhun Embuido, Alberto Lao and his friend Benjamin Tan, Jr , Dante Noche, Hans Gideon Cerdenia, Joseph Gutierrez, Henry So , Janice Rochelle Ponce. and Ligaya Santos.

Also, around 200+ students and teachers from 050219-n.jpg (52536 bytes) Liceo de San Lorenzo as well as students and teachers from various schools  from Antipolo, PUP, and UST attended the session.   Edmund Rosales started the evening with a short guide to what to observed that night.  He casually pointed the interesting objects and constellations that were visible that night.

Early in the evening, Edmund also open up the observatory that housed the 16" Cassegrain telescope to show the public the magnificent ringed planet Saturn,  the Gibbous Moon, Orion Nebula, red giant Betelgeuse , and brightest star Sirius.  The telescope then got a long queue as eager students and teachers eagerly awaited their turn at the eyepiece.

050219-c.jpg (55587 bytes)Meanwhile, ALPers also had a good informal dinner with the food brought along by fellow ALPers :)  A surprise guest of the ALPers was the surprise visit of former planetarium curator Maximo Sacro, who too was was also curious to see how ALP members were faring :)  He was also nice enough to contribute some potluck to the already abundant food brought about by ALPers :)  He stayed for an hour or two before going home and was glad to get to know the members of the ALP.  He was also happy to see old friends such as Alberto Lao, Allen Yu, James Kevin Ty, Edmund Rosales, Ligaya Santos as well as Joseph Gutierrez whom he had known way back in the mid years at PAS.  He also used that opportunity to get to know active ALPers such as Alice Villa-Real, Jett Aguilar, etc.

After having dinner, ALPers started to set up their scopes at the roofdeck.  Allen brought along his evr trusty  6" f/8 Newtonian dobsonian reflector, James wioth his TV-101 refractor on GP=Dx mount, Alice with her Nexstar 5 SCT, Henry with his Orion Mak 127 on Nexstar mount, Dante Noche with his 8" Discovery Newtonian dobsonian reflector.  Among the objects the group observed that night were Gibbous Moon , Saturn, double star Mizar and Alcor, Orion Nebula, and Jovian planet Jupiter.

Many students also lined up at each scope to get also a good view of the planets as well.  Edmund later also trained the 16" telescope toward the gas giant Jupiter, double star Mizar and Alcor and lastly the famous Omega Centauri globular cluster.

The stargazing session continued till the early morning hours before they all packed up and call it a night of good satisfaction and a good feeling that they were also able to share the night sky with the students and teachers as well.

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2003, 2004, 2005  Astronomical League of the Philippines Inc.