With great sadness the AAG mourns the passing of our friend and park ranger Charles Wood on July 30, 2015. Charles was instrumental in the formation and success of our astronomy group sharing stories of the night sky with our many visitors at Oliver Lee Memorial State Park. We'll miss you greatly.... to the stars, Charles.



The Amateur Astronomers Group is located in Alamogordo, New Mexico. The majority of our members are from South Central New Mexico. We are comprised of amateur astronomers with a variety of backgrounds and experience levels. Our group primarily supports Oliver Lee State Park and the New Mexico Museum of Space History with their astronomy events and other local outreach opportunities. The membership ranges from beginners to highly advanced individuals conducting scientific research. We welcome everyone, especially families and youngsters. Telescopes NOT required. Best of all membership is FREE!


CURRENT SCHEDULE OF EVENTS

Oliver Lee Memorial State Park
and the
Amateur Astronomers Group


Schedule of Night Sky Programs 2016

For information call: 575-437-8284

Program Name: Jupiter at Opposition
Date(s): March 5, 2016 Time: 6:00 pm to 7:30 pm Location: Meet at Group Shelter
Description: The AAG's telescopes will be featuring the planetary king of the solar system. Hear stories from ancient mythology to how studying Jupiter's storms help us understand weather here on Earth. Jupiter will be at its closest approach to Earth and its face will be fully illuminated by the Sun. This is the best time to view and photograph Jupiter and its moons along with of the details in Jupiter's cloud bands. If you own a good pair of binoculars, bring them along to see Jupiter's four largest moons appearing as bright dots on either side of the planet. Fee: Day-use fee required. For information call: 575-437-8284.


Program Name: Mercury at Greatest Elongation
Date(s): April 16, 2016 Time: 7:00 pm to 8:30 pm Location: Meet at Group Shelter
Description: Join the AAG as the planet Mercury reaches greatest eastern elongation of 19.9 degrees from the Sun. This is the best time to view Mercury since it will be at its highest point above the horizon in the evening sky. Look for the planet low in the western sky just after sunset. Fee: Day-use fee required. For information call: 575-437-8284.


Program Name: Calisto, Arcus and the Eta Aquarids
Date(s): May 7, 2016 Time: 9:00 pm to 10:30 pm Location: Meet at Group Shelter
Description: The Amateur Astronomers Group will be sponsoring a summer sky tour. Learn the constellations Ursa Major and Bootes, which are linked by the myths of Callisto and Arcus. The Eta Aquarids meteor shower will be occurring as well. The Eta Aquarids is an above average shower, capable of producing up to 30 meteors per hour at its peak in the northern hemisphere. Meteors will radiate from the constellation Aquarius, but can appear anywhere in the sky. Come early, see the 1 day old Moon and enjoy the beauty of Dog Canyon at sundown. Fee: Day-use fee required. For information call: 575-437-8284


Program Name: Let's Move to Mars!
Date(s): June 4, 2016 Time: 9:00 pm to 10:30 pm Location: Meet at Group Shelter
Description: Total Recall, Journey to Mars, Red Planet, The Martian - pop culture beckens us to the Red Planet. Join the AAG as Mars will be at opposition, meaning this will be some of the best views of the red planet in years. A medium-sized telescope will show polar ice caps and dark patches on the planet's orange surface. As an added bonus, Saturn will also be at opposition and view its surreal rings in a telescope. Come early, enjoy the sunset from your local state park. Fee: Day-use fee required. For information call: 575-437-8284


Program Name: Juno at Jupiter and the First Quarter Moon
Date(s): July 11, 2016 Time: 9:00 pm to 10:30 pm Location: Meet at Group Shelter
Description: Join the Amateur Astronomers Group celebrating NASA’s Juno spacecraft arrival at Jupiter after a five year journey. Launched on August 5, 2011, Juno will be inserted into a polar orbit around the giant planet on or around July 4, 2016. From this orbit the spacecraft will study Jupiter’s atmosphere and magnetic field. Visit the Moon through the AAG's telescopes. Come early, enjoy the sunset from your local state park. Fee: Day-use fee required. For information call: 575-437-8284


Program Name: Neptune at Opposition and the Crescent Moon
Date(s): September 3, 2016 Time: 7:30 pm to 9:30 pm Location: Meet at Group Shelter
Description: Join the Amateur Astronomers Group for views of our farthest planet. Neptune was discovered through the use of mathematics in 1846. The blue giant planet will be at its closest approach to Earth and its face will be fully illuminated by the Sun. It will be brighter than any other time of the year and will be visible all night long. This is the best time to view and photograph Neptune. Due to its extreme distance from Earth, it will only appear as a tiny blue dot in all but the most powerful telescopes. Come early, enjoy the sunset and a thin crescent of the Moon from your local state park. Fee: Day-use fee required. For information call: 575-437-8284


Program Name: Look... Up in the Sky - its (a) Supermoon
Date(s): October 16, 2016 Time: 6:00 pm to 8:30 pm Location: Meet at Group Shelter
Description: The Amateur Astronomers Group will have a special SUNDAY showing of the Supermoon. A Supermoon occurs when the full Moon occurs while its at perhelion, the closest point in the Moon's Orbit around the Earth. Watch the Moon as it rises against the Sacramento escarpment. Learn why the October full Moon is also sometimes called the Hunter's Moon, Blood Moon or the Travel Moon. The term "Supermoon" only dates back to about 30 years ago when astrologers first coined the term. Some astronomers dislike the idea, but we love it as it gets people to take a look up at our nearest celestial neighbor. Fee: Day-use fee required. For information call: 575-437-8284




OTHER EVENTS

in south-central New Mexico
with the
Amateur Astronomers Group


Schedule of Programs 2016


Program Name: White Sands Missile Range Elementary/Middle School Science Night
Date: Febuary 11, 2016 Time: 5:30-7:30 PM Location: WSMR Elementary/Middle School
Description: The Amateur Astronomers Group will be supporting the White Sands Missile Range Elementary/Middle School Science and Family Night with a tour of the night sky and science activities.

Program Name: New Mexico Museum of Space History Teacher STEM Day
Date: Febuary 20, 2016 Time: 11:30 AM - 3:30 PM Location: NMMSH, Alamogordo, NM
Description: The Amateur Astronomers Group will be supporting the Space Museum and will bring their solar telescopes to the patio and help with science, engineering and technology activities.

Program Name: Sierra Elementary Science
Date: 2016 Time: TBD Location: Sierra Elementary, Alamogordo, NM
Description: The Amateur Astronomers Group will be supporting Sierra Elementary with science, engineering and technology activities.



Program Name: Transit of Mercury
Date: May 9, 2016 Time: 5:12 am to 12:42 pm Location: NM Museum of Space History
Description: The Amateur Astronomers Group will highlight the transit of Mercury across the face of the Sun using our solar scopes. Stay tuned to further details.

Program Name: New Mexico Museum of Space History Rocketeer Academy
Date: June-July, 2016 Time: N.A. Location: NM Museum of Space History, Alamogordo, NM
Description: The Amateur Astronomers Group will be supporting the Space Museum Rocketeer Academy with science, engineering and technology activities.

Program Name: Venus/Jupiter Conjunction
Date: August 27, 2016 Time: 6:30 pm to 8:30 pm Location: NM Museum of Space History
Description: The Amateur Astronomers Group will highlight the conjuction of Venus and Jupiter in the evening sky. Venus and Jupiter will be only 0.06 degrees apart. Stay tuned to further details.




Other collaborations are in the works.... stay tuned!







Check out which constellations are currently up in the sky with the AAG SkyViewer