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by James Kevin Ty

Last August 5th,  the Astronomical League of the 060805-h.jpg (93013 bytes)Philippines held its Special Meeting at the Manila Planetarium in Luneta Park.  Among the ALP members who attended the event were James Kevin Ty, Dr. Charito Ty, Allen Yu, Alice Villa-Real, Rich Pijuan, Alfonso Uy, Dr. Jett Aguilar, Peter Benedict Tubalinal, Brian Davis, Angie Tan, Dante Noche, Dante Cruz, Irving Raymundo, Tommy Tan, Alexander Loinaz, Joseph Torres, Henry So, Maximo Sacro Jr., Melchor Pilones, Bel Pabunan, Raymund Sarmiento, Joey Grajeda, Hans Gideon Cerdenia, Marc Theodore Gutierrez and last but not the least , our special ALP member Christopher Go, who arrived that morning and was fetched by ALP president James Kevin Ty.

Among the guest organizations and individuals that attended the meeting were Dr. Bernardo Soriano, Elmor Escosia, Dr. Martin Rillen Jr. from PAGASA ;  UP College of Physics - Dr. Caloy Arcilla and Dr, Bernie Buenaobra ; Philippine Astronomical Society (PAS) - directors Engr. Camilo Dacanay, Bamm Gabriana, Agnes Oclarit , Leah Villalon , Dondi Esteban ,   members Fermin, Rochelle Derilo, Wilbert Palma, Christopher Lee, Dr. Armando Lee, Analyn Grace Domingo , Aileen Lynelle Espina , and George Toribio ; UP Astrosoc Alvin Ramirez, Anton Sandoal and Anthony Urbano ; PNU Astro Soc members - Richard Deseo, Jonalyn Icuspit, Priscelda Villa, Karen Keith Rodulfa, Maria Fe Moraca and Andrea Jane Nilo ; Bryce Suyat of OBMC; Brother Romel Bilong of SVD ; Ginalyn Garces ; ABS-CBN Filipino Channel crew members Augustin Montealto, Elise Tuazon, Stephanie Rustia, Leslie Kay Kabigting, JC and Henry Arellano.

Earlier that morning before the event, when Christopher Go arrived in Manila, ALP president James Kevin Ty accompanied him to San Agustin Church so he can attend Mass.  Afterwards, both of them had a hearty breakfast at Aristocrat Restaurant in Roxas Boulevard.  They then proceed to Manila Planetarium at around 8:30am to make 060805-n.jpg (27416 bytes)final checks on the venue.  The ABS-CBN Filipino Channel crew arrived at around 9:00am and did some interview with Christopher while James and the rest of the ALP  members help out to make the event run smoothly.

As the guest started to arrive at around 9:45am, ALPers lead them to the Planetarium theater room so they can exchnage pleasantries with other fellow amateur astronomers and enthusiasts.

At around 10:20am, the program proper got started with ALP president James Kevin Ty introducing the emcee of the day, ALP Vice-President Alice Villa-Real.   Alice then lead the opening prayers and later welcome the guest and members to the meeting and made a short introduction of the main speaker of the meeting, Christopher Go.   He will be giving a short talk on the History of the Red Spot, Jr.  He prepared a powerpoint presentation to help him make his talk more lively.  Members and guest were silently listening and jotting down notes as the speaker gives detailed accounts on how he was able to discover the color changes on the Oval BA or popularly known as Red Spot, Jr.

After the lecture, an open forum followed so as to let the 060805_yu-v.jpg (19844 bytes)members and guest ask the speaker on more detailed info about the Red Spot, Jr. After he was able to answer all the questions thrown to him, The ALP through its president presented the 2006 Father Leo Boethin Astronomy Achievement Award to Christopher Go for his  tireless monitoring and imaging of the planet Jupiter leading to worldwide intensified study and further understanding of the planet's atmospheric phenomenon, particularly the Oval BA or Red Spot, Jr. 

After awarding Chris, Planetarium curator Melchor Pilones awarded the recent winners of the 2nd ALP 9 Ball Billiards Tournament which was held last July 9 at Playdium Bowling and Billiard Center in Quezon City.  ALP president James Kevin Ty was crowned the champion while Henry So and Allen Yu took the 1st and 2nd runner-up trophies respectively.

Last but not the least, ALP president James Kevin 060805_yu-w.jpg (22291 bytes)Ty made his closing remarks by thanking the Planetarium curator Melchor Pilones for the venue, former Planetarium curator Maximo Sacro Jr for helping iron out the final details of the event, guest organizations that include the Philippine Astronomical Society, RTU MAS class, UP Astro-Soc, PNU Astro-Soc ,ABS-CBN Filipino Channel crews,a s well as guests and ALP members for attending and making this event a successful one indeed!  ALP president then invited the guests and ALP members to join them for a luncheon at the Emerald Garden Restaurant.  Before they proceed to the restaurant, guests and members had a group shot taken at the entrance of the Planetarium for posterity. Everyone had a great time at the luncheon and the food served were rated delicious by the guests and members.

After the luncheon, ALP members consisting of James Kevin Ty, Allen Yu, Maximo Sacro Jr, Peter Benedict Tubalinal, Dr. Jett Aguilar, Joley Grajeda, Henry So, Tommy Tan and Christopher Go proceed to the Jesuit Residence in Ateneo Compound to visit ALP honorary director Father Victor Badillo, S.J.  Father Badillo was elated to meet the group and was quite surprise but glad to see  Peter Benedict Tubalinal as the newest ALP member :)  Peter told Father he has finally found a home with the ALP.

Since Father's health is not that healthy, after 15 minutes of chatting with the group, ALPers departed so as to let him get some more rest.  They then proceeded to have some coffee breaks at Seattle's Best Coffee shop to continue their chat and discussion on astronomy before calling it a day.  Overall, it was one of the most unforgettable event in ALP history as astro organizations join together to celebrate the achievement of Christopher Go in the field of astronomy and make us all proud to be a Filipino!

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For more images of the event, click here.



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