Stargazing party is open to public

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BRUNSWICK – Southern Maine Astronomers will offer an evening of public stargazing and meteor shower watching at 8 p.m. Saturday, Aug. 11, at Crystal Spring Farm, Pleasant Hill Road.

“This third of five public star parties in the southern Maine area that SMA is hosting this summer should be a beauty,” said Paul Howell, president. “On Aug. 11 we will have a new moon, meaning dark skies – the best conditions under which to watch the premier meteor shower of the summer, the Perseids,” Howell said.

“We invite people of all ages and interests to bring a blanket to lay on the ground to watch meteors and also to get a look through some great telescopes at the many wonders of our Maine summertime skies. We also want to thank the Brunswick-Topsham Land Trust for partnering with us and allowing use of their beautiful open space at Crystal Spring Farm.”

SMA members will also offer a telescope clinic – hands-on assistance – to telescope owners who may be having difficulty using their own telescopes. Persons seeking that kind of help should arrive early around 6:30 p.m., while there is still daylight. Sunset is shortly after 8.

In the event of overcast skies, the star party will take place the following evening – Sunday, Aug. 12 – assuming it is clear. The star party is free although donations will be accepted.

SMA is a nonprofit corporation dedicated to astronomical education, research and learning about the night sky. For more information about the club and/or directions to the site, visit www.southernmaineastronomers.org.

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