July 2018 Newsletter

Hello Astronomy Enthusiasts!

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IDA Pittsburgh Chapter Meeting
Thursday, July 16th
6:30 PM

Mingo Observatory Creek County Park
1 Shelter 10 Road
Finleyville, PA 15332

The next meeting of the Pittsburgh Chapter of the International Dark-Sky Association will be at 6:30 pm on Monday, July 16, 2018 in the planetarium at Mingo Observatory, Mingo Creek County Park, Finleyville, PA 15332

Topics: project updates, light ordinances and membership drive.

Observatory Director Becky Nichols offered to show people around the building after the IDA meeting. Invite your friends! Free and open to the public.
Don't forget to like our Facebook Page @IDApghOrg

Allegheny Observatory Fall Open House
September 28th

Free Tickets for the Allegheny Observatory Fall Open House will be available Wednesday, August 1st at 9:00 am.

Spaces are still available for the regular weekly Thursday and Friday night tours (from 8 to 10 pm) that run April through October.
Call 412-321-2400 for free reservations Allegheny Observatory

Library Star Parties
Mark your calendar for this month's library star parties!

Registration is required. Contact the library for registration information. Bring binoculars if you have them!

Balwin Library on July 6th at 8:30 PM
41 Macek Drive #115
Pittsburgh, PA 15227
The make-up date is July 13th.
Baldwin Website

Bethel Park Library on July 18th
5100 W Library Avenue
Bethel Park, PA 15102
The make-up date is July 25th.
Bethel Park Website

Chartiers-Houston Library on July 12th at 8:45 PM
730 W Grant Street
Houston, PA 15342
The make-up date is August 10th.
Chartiers-Houston Website

WVU - Planetarium & Observatory - Events
Children's Show: Earth Moon Sun
July 6th
Tales of the Maya Skies at 8:00 PM
Stars of the Pharoahs at 9:00 PM

July 20th
5:00 PM
Children's Shows - Stars: the Powerhouses of the Universe

West Virginia University Planetarium is located on the PL Floor of White Hall, 135 Willey Street.

Admission is free but reservations are required. Reservations must be made before 3:30 pm on the days of the shows.

CitiParks Star Party
9 - 11 pm, July 13 & July 22
Zach Zelazny will be hosting CitiParks star parties from 9 to 11 pm in Schenley Park near the tennis courts on July 13 (rain date July 15) and July 22 (rain date July 23).

Join the Facebook group Urban Astronomizers for more information.
"People of all ages and walks of life who enjoy looking up at night."
Laurel Hill Star Party
9 - 11 pm, Saturday, July 14
Laurel Hill State Park Complex

AAAP members will join the public at the star party.

The Milky Way will be a bright band of stars, if the night is clear. This is a remote location southeast of Hidden Valley and Seven Springs Ski resorts.
Wagman & Mingo Star Parties
Sponsored by the Amateur Astronomers Association of Pittsburgh

July 20th & 21st
Starting at 6:30 PM EDT
Mingo Creek Park Observatory
1 Shelter 10 Road
Finleyville, PA 15332

July 20th & 21st
July 27th & 28st
Starting at 8:45 PM EDT
Nicholas E. Wagman Observatory
225 Kurn Road
Tarentum, PA 15084

Meet friendly, intelligent amateur astronomers who are anxious to share their hobby. This is a great place to start if you have recently purchased a telescope or are looking for information about buying a telescope. Bring your own binoculars or just use your own eyes. All AAAP Star Parties are free, but donations are appreciated!

The Star Parties will be held WEATHER PERMITTING.
Allegheny Observatory Lecture
July 20th
7:00 PM

Allegheny Observatory
159 Riverview Avenue
Pittsburgh, PA 15214

Lectures are held every third Friday of the month.

August 17th: "Unraveling the Universe with Gravitational Waves" by presenter Natália Tenorio Maia (Department of Physics and Astronomy, University of Pittsburgh)

Reservations are required.

For more information contact Allegheny Observatory - Tours.
Alpha Book Signings

Greensburg Barnes & Noble
5155 Route 30
Greensburg, PA 15601
Phone: 724.832.0622

July 29th
2:00 PM - 4:00 PM
Mary Robinette Kowal author ofThe Calculating Stars.
Click Here for More Information.

August 1st
7:00 PM to 9:00 PM
Maggie Stiefvater author of Scorpio Races and N.K. Jemison author of The Stone Sky, The Killing Moon, The Shadowed Sun.
Click Here for More Information.
Two Scientists Walk Into a Bar

August 3rd

Join local scientists at popular watering holes around the Pittsburgh Area! Sponsored by Carnegie Science Center.
Protecting Spectacular WV Dark Skies
August 11, 7:30 pm
A Tucker County Dark Sky Event - talk, then star party.

Canaan Valley Resort State Park
Address: 230 Main Lodge Rd, Davis, WV 26260
Phone: (304) 866-4121

Contact person for the event, Natalia Duff,, the AmeriCorps member serving with Woodlands/New Historic Thomas.

Can we get some volunteers with telescopes for the star party after the talk? We had ~100 people last year.

The talk will be given by Diane Turnshek and focus on:
  • Specific local government lighting ordinances and what it takes to place and enforce strict government regulations.
  • How to measure the sky brightness, including citizen science projects.
  • An advocacy group workshop, meant for people who know the light pollution basics, but want to know what to do now to protect their dark skies.
University of Pittsburgh - Department of Astronomy & Physics - Events
Remember to check out the July Events at

Astronomy Links
Physics Department at CMU
Facebook Page
Twitter Feed
Events Page

Department of Physics and Astronomy at Pitt
Facebook Page
Facebook Page
Facebook Page
Allegheny Observatory Lecture Series
Call 412-321-2400 at 1:00 PM on the Monday after each lecture for free reservations.


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2018 Lecture Dates
August 17th
September 21st
October 19th
November 16th
Buhl Planetarium: SkyWatch
July 27th

Visitors are invited to come to SkyWatch at the Henry Buhl, Jr. Planetarium & Observatory and get up-close and personal with amazing celestial objects.

Cost: $4 for non-members / $2 for members and as an add-on to general admission or an Omnimax show

Meet in the first floor of Carnegie Science Center at either 7 pm or 9 pm. A guide will lead you to the second-floor Buhl Planetarium, to start the evening with a virtual tour of the night sky.

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AAAP Star Parties
Below is the complete list of 2018 public star parties at Mingo and Wagman Observatories.

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July 20th & 21st
August 11th & 18th
September 7th & 8th
October 6th & 20th
November 3rd

July 20th & 21st
August 17th & 18th
September 15th & 29th
October 13th & 27th
November 10th