Things to Do

Party With the Stars at This Kerrville Event

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Kerrville, Texas, in the heart of the Texas Hill Country, is well-known for parties with lavish attire, fine wines, and delectable foods. Monday, February 27, 2017, will commence a new kind of party, one with genuine stars. There will be a new kind of name dropping, “…yeah, well, we were just looking at M42, you know that’s the Orion Nebula, and you’ll never guess who came into the observatory.” The centerpiece of this star party is a 16-inch telescope.

Pinwheel Galaxy (M101)

Pinwheel Galaxy

Photo: Putman Mountain Observatory

This long-exposure photo won’t necessarily be a galaxy you’ll see at the star party, but it’s up there. The party will be held at the new Loftis Family Science Center on the campus of Schreiner University beginning at 9 p.m. The entrance gate is along East Main Street across from the Schreiner University baseball and softball fields. There is no admission fee.

Daylight View

Loftis Observatory

Photo: Schreiner University

At a meeting with Schreiner University officials, professors, and other enthusiasts on Friday night at the facility, amateur astronomer Ken Kattner presented the program of the International Dark Sky movement. He has been encouraging the City of Kerrville to join the movement by adopting an outdoor lighting ordinance like neighboring Fredericksburg, Blanco, Johnson City, Llano, and Mason have in the last several years. Kattner located his Putman Mountain Observatory west of Enchanted Rock because of the darkness of the sky in that area.

Horsehead Nebula

Horsehead Nebula

Photo: Putman Mountain Observatory

There will also be an 8-inch telescope available for viewing.  The 3,500 square foot Field Biology Lab and the telescope were a gift from the late Dennis Loftis. For more information, contact Dr. Arvidsson by email at [email protected] or by phone (830) 792-7249.

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