Mars, Constellations, and Clusters at Sky’s the Limit

03-30-2019 8:00 PM - 10:00 PM
Sky’s the Limit Observatory and Nature Center
Address: 9697 Utah Trail, 29 Palms, CA, United States

Mars, Constellations, and Clusters at Sky’s the Limit

Saturday, March 30 at Sky’s The Limit:

Mars, Constellations, and Clusters

Sky’s The Limit Observatory and Nature Center invites stargazers to tour the desert night sky on Saturday, March 30. This free public event will start around 8:00 pm and last approximately 2 hours. The Observatory is at 9697 Utah Trail in Twentynine Palms, just outside the main (north) entrance to Joshua Tree National Park.

Many fine open clusters can be found in the month of March. Open clusters are groups of stars that were recently formed out of hydrogen gas clouds. The nebulosity of the hydrogen gas has been consumed and the stars are slowly drifting apart. In the constellation of Gemini, M35 is 3800 light-years away. Found in Cancer is M44, commonly called the Beehive – one of the brightest as it is only 538 light-years distant. Also found in Cancer is M67 – called King Cobra Cluster.

Prominent constellations are Taurus (The Bull), Orion (The Hunter), Canis Major (The Large dog),Gemini (The Twins), and Cancer (The Crab).

Volunteers will set up a variety of kinds and sizes of telescopes on the winding sidewalks, and guests are welcome to use them or may bring their own binoculars and scopes as well.

The presentation is very casual, so come at any time and leave when you wish. Bring a red flashlight to preserve night vision. Dress for unpredictable desert weather and bring snacks, water bottles, and chairs.

Please be aware that white headlights severely disturb viewing and use only parking lights as you approach the dome. Let your eyes adjust to the dark before you drive into the parking area.

There are no overnight stays and NO CAMPING anywhere on the Observatory and Nature Center property. No pets, no smoking or alcohol allowed, and visitors must carry out all trash. Adults must accompany and take responsibility for the safety and behavior of children under 16.

The seasonal sky is very unpredictable, and a viewing event may have to be delayed, rescheduled, or cancelled due to cloudiness, rain, or excessive wind.  Check @skysthelmit29 or follow @STL29Palms to learn the latest status of an event or call Ray at 760-365-7897.

For more information and to see photos taken through STL’s 14” Celestron Schmidt–Cassegrain telescope, visit the STL web site at STL is a tax-exempt nonprofit organization. Donations to support Sky’s The Limit’s educational programs are gratefully accepted.