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Thursday, October 22, 2009

4. Star Gazing at Griffith Observatory

Saturn at the equinox
Originally uploaded by thebadastronomer
Go star gazing for free this Saturday, October 24th (or every one Saturday per month)! The Griffith Observatory hosts monthly "Public Star Parties". Amateur astronomers bring their gargantuan telescopes (and their passion) to share with the public on one Saturday per month from 2-10 PM. I recommend going right before sunset to see the contrast between the sun, moon, planets, and stars. There are plenty of grassy areas to have a nice picnic. Admission to the Observatory and parking are free, while $7 pp to see a show at the planetarium theater (dome-like screen in the ceiling). If you're lucky, you might be able to capture an image of the planet Saturn and it's rings with your digital camera peeking through a telescope! In case you can't make it this Saturday, check out the calendar online for the next one because it's usually one Saturday per month.

UPDATE 01/14/10: The 2010 Schedule for the FREE Public Star Parties is now posted online (click HERE): 1/23, 2/20, 3/20, 4/24, 5/22, 6/19, 7/16, 9/18, 10/16, 11/13, 12/11.

UPDATE 02/16/10: Rain is expected on Saturday, 02/20/10, so it will be an "indoor" Star Party (BYOB = Bring your own binoculars). I did receive an email that The Observatory is asking for $20 for non-member admission.

Approximate cost of creative date idea = FREE.
Actual value of the cheap date idea = Priceless and out of this world.
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