To fully see what’s going on, it’s lights out at Perkins Observatory. And once the lights are dimmed, any light source such as a cell phone or camera flash is strictly taboo, garnering the same kind of disapproving glare as singing aloud with your mp3 player at the gym might bring. Our pupils react almost immediately to light, dilating in darkness and contracting with light. The flicker from one person’s text message could be enough to spoil another enthusiast’s viewing experience —and you won’t want to be the one blinding another to their pristine view of the Pleiades Cluster!
We were forewarned by self-proclaimed “Astro-Nerd” Tom Burns about the importance of maintaining the darkness and the wisdom of walking slowly and counting steps. He reminded us that ambulance lights can really mess up one’s telescopic view of Mars! He worked the crowd like a pro during an informative and utterly entertaining orientation with an enthusiasm that added a showmanship flair to the science of astronomy.
Perkins Observatory: Call ahead for reservations (740-363-1257). Public programs most Friday nights. Private group visits available. Click Google Map link below for more information.
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