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Friday, January 17, 2014 5:32pm -0500

Local Star Gazers Start Astronomy Club in Lake County Florida

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We see it on every astronomy site we go to "Join your local astronomy club to get involved in star parties and astronomy in your area." I think "My area, what astronomy club?" Last year I drove almost two hours to Alachua County Florida to enjoy a star party the Alachua Astronomy Club had put together. I was not disappointed. As soon as I got out of my car my eyes were fixed upward where tears of joy overwhelmed me as I gazed upon billions of stars I could never see where I live. Telescopes were lined up with lines of people waiting to get a glimpse of the cosmos. As I listened to conversations around me I felt as if every thought in my head got out and became the people around me. Every conversation was filled with deep questions about the universe.


I instantly wanted to become part of what I was seeing, local friends setting up their telescopes and reaching out to the public. I was invited several times that night to join the Alachua Astronomy Club but decline because it was too far a drive every week and I have a family to tend to.

I often find myself outside looking through my telescope and thinking it would be nice to show someone what I am seeing or talk to someone about the mysteries of the universe. I learned that Alachua County even has their own Dark Sky Park . I Knew I  wanted something like that for my community too.

As it turns out there is no astronomy club in my area. There is the Central Florida Astronomical Society but they are also about an hour and a half away. It's hard to find people in my community who are interested in the night sky. I found one person on Facebook, Terry Hancock and we decided to make a group on Facebook. That group now has 14 members and is growing everyday. We hope to soon have a star party of our own.

Several people have asked to join the group that do not have Facebook accounts so I made a place in the forum just for the Lake County Astronomy Club. You can find that link here. Right now we are very informal, a few people with the same passion who want to get together and look through each other's telescopes. Everything has to start somewhere. 

Click to join the Lake County Astronomy Club group on Facebook.

Read 4892 times Last modified on Friday, January 17, 2014 8:19pm -0500
Laurel Nendza

Laurel Nendza is the owner and creator of Stellar Eyes.