Michiana  Astronomical  Society



The Michiana Astronomical Society is an Astronomy club based in the South Bend/Mishawaka Indiana area. We meet in the third Thursday of the month @ 7:00PM. Meetings take place at the Centre branch of the South Bend library located at 1150 E Kern Road South Bend, IN 46614.



2021 MAS Due's are due in January.

2021 MAS Due's are due in January. 

If you are going to join or renew, please email me and I will send you my address. I have been making very limited trips to the P.O. Box during these Covid times. I would prefer you send your checks direct to me.  treasurer@michiana-astro.org

3/11/2020 - Because of COVID-19 the SBCPL has canceled all meeting rooms through the end of 2020 and into 2021.

March 2021 meeting will be held virtually via WebEx. Invitations where sent out via the MAS Google Groups email to current club members.

Thursday, March 18, 2021 7PM-9PM (Eastern)
Webex Virtual Meeting
The meeting starts at 7:00 PM and will be held via Webex.
Note that all recent club members with an email address on file will receive a Webex invitation via email.  If not, please request one by contacting Bruce.

This month, Emily M. Levesque, PhD will do a presentation on The Last Stargazers.
Emily is a professor in the University of Washington’s astronomy department.  Her research is focused on improving our overall understanding of how massive stars evolve and die.
She’s the author of The Last Stargazers, which shares her experiences of astronomical observing, along with other academic books.
To see more, her website is www.emlevesque.com and the website about her book is thelaststargazers.com.

 2020 MAS Calendars are now available. $15.00 + $2.00 shipping or $2.80 shipping for two.

To order: Contact Linda Marks and Steve Accuosti at  information@michiana-astro.org

Important News

Seeing stars: Cass County park aims for Dark Sky status

Cass County's Lawless Park wants to be Dark Sky site

Upcoming MSP 2021 Star Party

Michiana Star Party  (2021)

Dates: 2021 Dates are now set:  September 3rd - 6th 2021

For details, click here:

Details Coming Soon

Earthbound Events

Suspended by the NPS due to COVID-19 precautions   -  Saturday Stargazing @ Indiana Dunes National Lakeshore - Cost: Free

Indiana Dunes National Lakeshore is having a stargazing starting on Saturday January 26, 2019. The program will take place at the Kemil Parking Lot, near Beverly Shores, one of the Dark Sky Communities. That location is one of the darkest spots between Chicago and Michigan City. The address to plug into gps is "Kemil Beach, Beverly Shores, IN 46304, or GPS Coordinates - 041.40.39N 087.00.35W.   

Stargazing will continue at the Indiana Dunes National Lakeshore Kemil parking lot, on the fourth Saturday of the month in 2019.

Stargazing will continue at the Indiana Dunes National Lakeshore Kemil parking lot, on the third Saturday of the month in 2020.  Note: This is a change for 2020.

2021 Schedule
Suspended due to COVID-19 precautions until further notice.

The program is weather dependent, so check back the Saturday of the event.  Here is wishing you Clear Skies!

Click on the image below to enlarge it.


TBD - Potato Creek Astronomy Program  (Potato Creek State Park) - Cost: The event is free, but there is a cost to enter the state park.

July 11, 2020 @2pm at the Nature Center

August 22, 2020 @2pm at the Nature Center - considering doing a 9:45 pm laser tour...  

Sept. 19, 2020@2pm at the Nature Center

Oct. 17, 2020 @2pm at the Nature Center

Contact  Linda Marks for additional details.

On scheduled Friday nights we observe from the campground Site 211, from dusk until 11 pm. - Suspended due to COVID-19 precautions

On scheduled Saturdays Linda shows a powerpoint and then we do a hands-on paper project at the Nature Center from 2 pm to 3 pm. When the sun is shining, we show folks views through solar telescopes, after the main program.

On a scheduled Saturday nights we do our observing normally at the Whispering Winds site near the Nature Center (you have to pass the sign on the way in). We arrive one hour before sunset to set up.- Suspended due to COVID-19 precautions

The programs are weather dependent.

Note: Be aware due to Covid-19, Potato Creek State Park currently closes at 11:00 PM.

TBD - New Carlisle Library Astronomy Program  - Cost: The event is free

This is from Roanna Hootten, of the New Carlisle Library:   "Because of the ever changing nature of Covid, we are postponing in person August/September programs."   So we are looking forward to trying to do this event next spring. Stay tuned! Keep enjoying the views through your own telescopes.

Our Universe Revealed - Physics for Everyone

Dear All,

Following on from my previous message and the responses from our attendees, all of our planned public talks for this semester will now be streamed live online rather than being held in person. These can be accessed on Youtube as well as on Zoom using the connection details below:
Our Universe Revealed Youtube Channel - https://bit.ly/2WqK1jq 
Connect using Zoom (instructions for how to install the Zoom client and connect to the talk can be found at https://bit.ly/2xbGZVs) - https://notredame.zoom.us/j/724722144 (Meeting ID is 724-722-144). 

We will aim to follow our usual event format with a 30-40 minute presentation followed by time for audience questions. Questions can be asked through both Youtube and Zoom platforms at any time during the talk and we will collate and respond to them at the end of the talk.

I want to take this opportunity to thank you for your continued support with the series in these challenging times. Through the power of technology we will do all we can to keep educating our students, our neighbors and the Notre Dame community whether close by or further afield.

If you think this and our other events would be of interest to any of your friends, family or colleagues, please feel free to forward this email on to them so they are able to join us.

Jonathan Crass
Series Coordinator

Our Universe Revealed

Hubble’s 30 Years of Experience: Springboard for the future (January 20, 2021)

Note: Due to limited space, Tickets are required for some events but are typically free of charge.

Recent News / Activities:
December 21 - Conjunction of Jupiter and Saturn - 7 arcmin, 17:21-18:50
December 21 - December Solstice
December 21 - Ursids Meteor Shower with first quarter Moon
January 3 - Quadrantids Meteor Shower with waning gibbous Moon

Recent Launches:
December 18 - Soyuz - OneWeb 4 (36 satellites for broadband network)
December 19 - SpaceX Falcon 9 - NROL-108 (Natl Recon Ofc)
January 7 - SpaceX Falcon 9 - Turksat 5A (Turkish Comm Sat)
January 12 - Curiousity rover 3000 Sols on Mars (3082 days, 8.4 years)
January 17 - Virgin Orbit LauncherOne launch from B747 - ELaNa-20 (14 CubeSats)
January 18 - SpaceX Falcon 9 - Starlink V1.0-L16 (60)
January 21 - SpaceX Falcon 9 - Transporter 1 - Sun-synchronous orbit rideshare

Upcoming Launches:
January 25 - SpaceX Falcon 9 - Starlink V1.0-L17 (60) TBD
February 1 - SpaceX Falcon 9 - Starlink V1.0-L18 (60) TBD
February 14 - Soyuz launch - Progress 77P Cargo Delivery to ISS
February 15 - Rocket Labs Electron - STP-27RM (USAF) VA First Launch TBD
February 15 - SpaceX Falcon 9 - Starlink V1.0-L19 (60) TBD
February 15 - United Launch Alliance Delta 4-Heavy - NROL-82 Spy Satellite TBD
February 18 - Mars 2020 Landing, Perseverance rover, Ingenuity helicopter (L.7/30/20)
February 20 - Northrup Grumman Antares - ISS Resupply NG-15
February 25 - Soyuz - OneWeb 5 (36 satellites for broadband network)
February 26 - United Launch Alliance Atlas 5 launch - STP-3 USAF
March 1 - Northrup Grumman Minotaur 1 - NROL-111 Spy Satellite TBD
March 1 - United Launch Alliance Atlas 5 - USSF 8 (GSSAP 5 & 6) TBD
March 29 - United Launch Alliance Atlas 5 launch - CST-100 Starliner Orbital Flight Test 2
March 30 - SpaceX Falcon 9 - Dragon Crew 2 (2 NASA, 1 Japan, 1 ESA astronauts)
April 10 - Soyuz - ISS 64S Crew to ISS

All Upcoming Events:
January 24 - Mercury at Greatest Eastern Elongation - View in evening
February 18 - MAS Meeting
March 6 - Mercury at Greatest Western Elongation - View in morning
March 18 - MAS Meeting
March 20 - March Equinox
April 15 - MAS Meeting
April 22 - Lyrids Meteor Shower
May 6 - Eta Aquarids Meteor Shower
May 17 - Mercury at Greatest Eastern Elongation - View in evening
May 20 - MAS Meeting
June 11 - Michiana Star Party 12 (MSP12) 6/11-13, Dr. Lawless Int'l Dark Sky Park (Tentative)
June 17 - MAS Meeting
June 21 - June Solstice
July 4 - Mercury at Greatest Western Elongation - View in morning
July 7 - Green Bank Star Quest 7/7-10, Green Bank WV
July 11 - Astro Camp 7/11-16, YMCA Camp Eberhart
July 15 - MAS Meeting
July 27 - Delta Aquarids Meteor Shower
August 1 - Nebraska Star Party 8/1-6, Merritt Reservoir, Snake Campground
August 2 - Saturn at Opposition
August 12 - Perseid Meteor Shower
August 19 - Jupiter at Opposition
August 19 - MAS Meeting
September 14 - Mercury at Greatest Eastern Elongation - View in evening
September 15 - Neptune at Opposition
September 16 - MAS Meeting
September 22 - September Equinox
October 7 - Draconids Meteor Shower
October 21 - MAS Meeting
October 21 - Orionids Meteor Shower
October 25 - Mercury at Greatest Western Elongation - View in morning
October 29 - Venus at Greatest Eastern Elongation - View in evening
November 5 - Uranus at Opposition
November 12 - Taurids Meteor Shower
November 17 - Leonids Meteor Shower
November 18 - MAS Meeting
November 19 - Partial Lunar Eclipse
December 14 - Geminids Meteor Shower
December 16 - MAS Meeting
December 21 - December Solstice
December 22 - Ursids Meteor Shower

Step out, look up: a guide to local summertime stargazing

A recent article in the South Bend Tribune about local Stargazing. Click here to read it: (July 26, 2018 SBT article)

Previous Event - Febuary 4th, 2017 Science Alive

MAS again participated in Science Alive at the St Joseph county library.

2020/2021 MAS officers are:

Bruce Miller - President

Linda Marks - Vice President

Ruth Craft - Secretary (Chuck Buter - backup Secretary)

Paul Surowiec - Treasurer, Webmaster,  & Alcor

Matt Bielski - Member at Large

Many thanks to our previous officers and their service to the Michiana Astronomical Society, it members and the community.

Space Events


Meteor Showers:

Quadrantids - January 3th, 2021
Lyrids - April 22th, 2021
Eta Aquariids - May 5th, 2021
Southern Delta Aquariids - July 28-29th, 2021
Alpha Capricornids - July 30th, 2021
Perseids - August 12th, 2021
Orionids - October 21th, 2021
Southern Taurids - November 4-5th, 2021
Northern Taurids - Active from October 19th to December 10th, 2021
Leonids - November 11-12th, 2021
Geminids - December 12-13th, 2021
Ursids - December 22nd, 2021

Note on Meteor Showers: These dates are the times of peak occurrence, you can actually see some a few days before and after these dates.

Full Moon -  March 28th, 2021 - April 26th, 2021 - May 26th, 2021 - June 24th, 2021 - July 23th, 2021 - August 22nd, 2021 - September 20th, 2021 - October 20th, 2021 - November 19th, 2021 - December 18th, 2021

New Moon -  March 13th, 2021 - April 11th, 2021 - May 11th, 2021 - June 10th, 2021 - July 9th, 2021 - August 8nd, 2021 - September 6th, 2021 - October 6th, 2021 - November 4th, 2021 - December 4th, 2021

Total Solar Eclipse - Next one in the US is April 8th 2024.

   The Moon will totally block out the Sun on Aug 21th, 2017 @ 2:21PM.
Time until the total Eclipse


For additional information on the Eclipse, be sure and visit NASA's Eclipse web site.

If you have come here looking for information on the MAS8 Star Party, you have come to the right place. It can be found on the MSP8 page. You can also find the information located on our ex-presidents web site Nightwise.

Time for a Star Party - Read Chucks blog about what goes on at a Star Party .

Can you find these galaxies in the sky? 

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