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Hello from Burbage

Guest OurMikeGeorge

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Guest OurMikeGeorge

Hello all, I hope you don't mind me posting here because I know practically nothing about astronomy, but I am looking for some help with a couple of astronomy-related community events I am planning for next year.


The first would be a stargazing event on 13.09.15 (new moon) and the second would be a moonwatch on 28.09.15 (full moon, super moon, lunar eclipse).


Although I want the events to be interesting from an astronomical point of view, their primary aim is to be local community events rather than serious astronomy, so probably none of the participants would have telescopes and they have to take place within the parish boundaries of Burbage in Leicestershire. The moon event in particular would include (depending on the weather) activities for photography, story-telling, poetry, performance etc.


I have a site in mind for the moon event, in a park which slopes towards the east and (again depending on the weather) the moon will be visible until it gets eclipsed. I think it might be hard to find a site which is dark enough for the stargazing event, although Burbage Common might be suitable.


If any of you are local and would be kind enough to help I would like to hear from any members who would be willing to be the technical lead on the events, or suggest suitable sites for stargazing, or provide any other help or advice.

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Hello Mike and welcome to the forum. :)


1st off, not an issue you posting your question here, if we can help, we will certainly try to.


With regards to the 2 dates you have in mind, the first date, 13.09.15 (new moon), coincides with one of the largest star parties held in the UK at Kelling Heath, where a lot of us will be at, or, on our way back from, so I am not sure how much help we could be?


The next date, 28.09.15 (full moon, super moon, lunar eclipse), could also be a bit problematic, that date is a Monday, a lot of us are at work and a trip down the M1 to J21 to get to you in rush hour traffic could result in us turning up late.


Hopefully somebody will be able to help but just a heads up in case you do not get many responses to your request for help.


In the meantime, I hope you stay on the forum and I hope you enjoy.


All the best,



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Hi Mike, a warm welcome to EMS.


You're right in at the deep end then. Daz is right about Kelling, a good number of the EMS membership may attend Kelling, and this was sold out weeks ago, as it's really popular.


In the meantime you have some time to learn a bit more about the hobby yourself, and you have come to the right place. You don't need a scope to get started, and if you do consider buying something, then run it by folks on here to make sure you don't buy a lemon. There's a lot of stuff out there that promises so much and delivers so little.


The Sky and Telescope Pocket Star Atlas is a good investment, and will give you a good grasp of the sky.



A pair of binoculars will open up another layer of objects to see and are useful in their own right for observing.

If you have any further questions, feel free to ask away in the beginners and help section, and someone will be along to help out.


Enjoy the forum. :)

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Hi Mike a warm welcome to the SGL


Who??? EMS!! :-).

Full moon isn't a great time for scopes. The moon it's self is to bright to view for long even with filters, and most of its features are washed out, long with most other objects when the moon is out. A lot of people don't bother with a full moon about, aka Mr Blobby.

Hope it goes alright for you, I'm afraid I'll be one of the ones at Kelling otherwise I would offer to help at the earlier event.

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Guest OurMikeGeorge

Many thanks for the warm welcome and the replies and suggestions.


I won't try to respond to each comment individually, but to summarise what I'm thinking now...


First, although I would like the events to be interesting and give people a chance to learn more about the skies, they are not meant to be serious astronomy - they are more of an opportunity for community get-togethers and a hook for other activities. I don't think anybody is likely to have a telescope.


Unless I can get some knowledgeable help I think I'll give up the idea of the stargazing. Apart from the sun, the moon and the plough I can't identify anything and I'm going to be too busy to learn a new hobby (although I have installed the stellarium app on my phone and I'll use it when I get the chance).


For the moon event, expert knowledge isn't so important - it's more of a light source for our activities and a photo-opportunity etc (and we won't be trying to see any stars).


With regard to dates, I assumed the night of 13 September would be best for star gazing but presumably a few days either side would be good and that would give a bit of flexibility in case of bad weather. And the same for the moon event(s), spreading it over the weekend from Friday to Monday nights would be an option, although somehow a nearly full moon isn't quite the same, and I don't suppose the eclipse can be postponed.


If anybody lives in this area and would like to help with these events (or find out about other possible events next year) please PM me :)

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Guest OurMikeGeorge

Thanks, but I'm beginning to think I shouldn't have made the request on this forum. You're all very helpful but I don't think you've understood that these are meant to be fun events and not serious astronomy.

If you've ever been to a 'fun' dog show, that's the kind of thing I'm saying, and you're hearing Crufts. Thanks again for all the advice, and if any local member would like to help with this please contact me. :)

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