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Blinn-Schulenburg invites star gazers to Schaefer Observatory for spring ‘star parties’

Visitors will receive guided tour of the constellations

February 10, 2017

Astronomy buffs of all ages are invited to two free stargazing parties at the Blinn College-Schulenburg Campus this spring.

The star parties will be held at 6:30 p.m. Thursday, March 2, and 8 p.m. Friday, April 7, at the Schaefer Observatory at Blinn-Schulenburg.

Master Astronomer Gordon Houston will begin with a brief presentation, and as darkness falls and the stars become visible, will conduct a constellation tour. Guests should wear comfortable shoes to climb the ladder to the observatory and may wish to bring a lawn chair, jacket, and insect repellant.

For the March 2 presentation, there are expected to be three planets as well as several star clusters and nebulas visible.

These events are dependent upon clear evening skies. Guests may visit www.cleardarksky.com and enter Schaefer Observatory in the keyword search box to check conditions.

The Schaefer Observatory was built in the 1940s by local hardware store owner H.P. Schaefer and his sons to view the moon’s surface. The family donated the 27-foot tall galvanized metal structure to the Schulenburg school district in 1991, and in 2008 Blinn received the observatory. It is located behind the main building on Blinn’s Schulenburg campus at 100 Ranger Drive.

For more information or to be added to the mailing list for future star parties, contact Loraine Orellana at 979-743-5237.

Blinn – Schulenburg offers a variety of academic transfer, workforce training and continuing education classes to fit the needs of any student. For information on course offerings and student registration, visit: www.blinn.edu/schulenburg or call 979-743-5200.