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Presidents Message: An important message about the car park

Dear Mount Burnettichi
Winter is not just coming, it has arrived in its full splendour. At Mount Burnett that means cold nights and lots of rain. Rain means boggy car parking. This makes it a good time to discuss access to MBO.
If the gate is closed then MBO is closed.
For the sake of safety ONLY COMMITTEE MEMBERS AND OUTREACH TEAM LEADERS are permitted to open the gate. During the winter months we want to check the state of the car park before members and visitors arrive. Bollards and tape will be put up around boggy areas so please leave them in place should you see them. If you arrive early for a session please be patient and wait at the gate.
Those of you who have been members from the beginning will remember how rapidly the car park deteriorated that first winter, leading to closure of Mount Burnett for several weeks. Rather than repeat that occurrence we ask everybody’s patience and assistance.
Yours in wellies,


Wednesday 1st & Thursday 2nd July - Venus and Jupiter Conjunction

In the early evenings of Wednesday 1st and Thursday 2nd July Melbourne will be treated (weather permitting) to a lovely conjunction of Venus and Jupiter in the north-western sky, less than a degree apart (closest on Wednesday night). Here is how the excellent free software program Stellarium shows it (click for full size images).


Screenshot of Stellarium renderng of Jupiter-Venus conjunction Thursday 2nd July 2015


Presidents Message: World Record Stargazing, Telescopes and Lanterns

Dear Mount Burnettisi,

What a busy week that was for Mount Burnett!  We had the good news that our friends at CAASTRO will be donating 100 replicas of Galileo’s telescope (small refractors worth ~$5 each)  for us to use in the World Record Stargazing attempt on August 21st. Young Observers if you want to take part then let me know so I can reserve one of the telescopes!

On Friday Jacinta from Telescopes in Schools visited Emerald Secondary College to set up a large Celestron GoTo telescope for the the school to use over the next few years. MBO will be providing expert guidance as the school begins its astronomical journey.

Finally on Saturday MBO outreach (including some new members) set up at the Belgrave lantern parade. We had ~250 visitors put their eyes to eyepieces which is our biggest single event yet (there are some photos on our Facebook page). As I chatted with visitors it was obvious how much higher our profile is now than last year. Many people had visited already with heir school or scout troop. I heard less of the “I had no idea there was an observatory here” and more of the “we had a wonderful time when we visited”. And to cap it all off we had the Moon, Jupiter and Venus doing their little dance in the western sky. To those of you who took part in our activities this week thank you and I hope you enjoyed it as much as I did.