Thursday, August 13, 2015

Where to See Stars in Milwaukee

Google Sky always has stars

Did you get a view of the Perseid meteor showers last night?  It can be difficult to see stars with all the bright lights of the city. We went to Atwater Beach, but found only college students spread out on blankets, with little to see in the sky.  The parks are usually closed at dusk or 10 PM.  Look for posted hours at parks you might want to visit. If you go in summer, schedule your stargazing with a stop at the roving beer garden. We saw plenty of stars on our way out of Brown Deer Park when we were there last week. Usually if you choose one of the larger parks, you can find a place with fewer lights.

Wehr Nature Center has a special group of astronomers who meet monthly and for special viewing.  You can join the meetings of the  Wehr Astronomical Society, Inc. at Wehr Nature Center for no cost.  They bring lots of information and speakers.  Though they take the summer off, the meetings should begin again in Fall, so let them know you're interested and you'll receive information about it.

Another group is the Milwaukee Astronomical Society.  They have an observatory at New Berlin, which is where they hold public viewings about once a month.  Look at the website for the next scheduled event, which is an OPEN HOUSE August 21.

Last week we went to UWM Manfred Olson Planetarium for a Stars & S'mores event.  They have an observatory on the upper floor of the science building, but it was too cloudy that night to see much, so it was not opened.  There were a couple of telescopes set up in the courtyard.  They had plenty of volunteers available and several sets of binoculars.  Had it been nicer weather, it would have been a great place to stargaze.  Well, at least  the fire pits for roasting marshmallows were perfect!  The show in the planetarium is always a treat, and they did a show of the current stars to make up for what we didn't see. You can go to one of the themed Friday night shows for just a few dollars.  Sign up for their updates and you'll know about the special events they hold.  Lots of fun.  Good luck finding stars!
A high powered telescope in the courtyard by the science building

Inside the UWM planetarium

Making s'mores at UWM

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