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The Daily Wildcat

The Daily Wildcat

 

    Night sky: a free art gallery

    The Flandrau Science Center is one of several places students can go to see free art, whether on a date or with pals. The free art in question would be the night sky, an ever-changing array of glitter in the darkness that can provide as much entertainment as any Manet or Warhol.
    The Flandrau Science Center is one of several places students can go to see free art, whether on a date or with pals. The free art in question would be the night sky, an ever-changing array of glitter in the darkness that can provide as much entertainment as any Manet or Warhol.

    You’ve seen it in depicted in artwork: the rings of Saturn, the cloud belts of Jupiter. But what if you had the chance to see the real thing?

    “”There’s a certain glory to the night sky, and some art tries to reflect that glory in nature,”” said Mike Terenzoni, astronomy coordinator at Flandrau, the University of Arizona Science Center.

    Although art might try to represent the real thing, there’s nothing like looking at the beauty of space with your own two eyes. The observatory at the Flandrau Science Center has a 16-inch Cassegrain telescope that is open to the public for sky viewing Wednesday through Saturday after sunset until 10 p.m.

    Many people don’t realize this is one of the few telescopes open for free to the public on a regular basis. In addition, the flat Arizona landscape makes the sights you will see through the telescope unique.

    “”We can cut through quite a bit of light pollution because of the clarity of the southern Arizona skies,”” Terenzoni said.

    In the next few months, many things will be visible through the telescope, including the Orion nebula, star clusters in the winter Milky Way, Earth’s sister galaxy Andromeda and double clusters in Cassiopeia.

    If you have a group to share the experience with, you can rent the observatory for private parties on Monday and Tuesday nights for a small fee.

    Terenzoni recommends, however, that if you really want to experience the stars, Saguaro National Park is the place to go.

    In fact, he will provide the telescopes. Star parties are available and can be held anywhere. Terenzoni provides 8-inch Cassegrain telescopes and a knowledgeable astronomer or volunteer to help point the telescopes in the right direction.

    “”There’s a certain wonder to the night sky, and why do we have art?”” Terenzoni said. “”It’s to share the wonder of the natural world around us.””


    For more info Contact:
    Mike Terenzoni
    520-621-3646

    Book a star party
    520-621-STAR(7827)

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