About MAS

A Welcome from the President

A warm welcome to MAS! We are a very active and friendly club, established in 1996. Our activities extend across the Greater South Western region of Sydney.

If you are interested in astronomy, you are welcome to come along to our monthly Macarthur Astronomy Forum** and hear our great guest speakers, or perhaps join us beneath a dark and starry sky when we hold our public nights.**

You don’t have to own a telescope, all you need is curiosity. You can take advantage of our members astronomical knowledge and tips. We can help you to expand your universe, in a way you thought was never possible. Onwards… but mostly upwards!

John Rombi
President, Macarthur Astronomical Society

**During the pandemic the Forum is held online for members only and the public nights are suspended.

Core Activities

Our three core activities are:
*  the Macarthur Astronomy Forum;
*  members field nights; and
* public outreach, including student mentoring, public stargazing, exhibitions and community activities.

Aspirations

At a time of accelerating scientific research and public interest, we believe there’s never been a more exciting time to be an astronomer!

We strive to build relationships with regional institutions, including traditional land owners, community leaders, local councils, schools, universities, CSIRO and NASA and we have introduced a School Mentoring Programme to assist small groups of students who are studying astronomy.

We seek increased membership, financial growth and the technical excellence, in order to empower future acquisition of advanced astronomical equipment and the property in which to house it.

Macarthur Astronomy Forum

A regular meeting for members and visitors is held monthly at the Western Sydney University (WSU) Campbelltown Campus – full details are always posted on our calendar and news pages.

General discussion is carried out at these meetings, followed by a guest speaker, usually a distinguished professional astronomer, who will address the gathering on a topic of astronomical interest. WSU students and members of the public are very welcome to attend. The community-minded support of WSU in allowing the Society to hold our monthly general meetings on campus at Campbelltown is gratefully acknowledged.

(During the health crisis our meetings are held online for members only).

Members Observing Nights

Regular field nights for members are held at two dark sky sites in southwest Sydney, which we call “Stargard” and “The Forest.” Observing dates are listed on the “What’s On” page. You will require your own transport.

Tips on observing will be shared, introductions to new aids or equipment and an opportunity to test-drive different telescopes. New members and owners of new equipment can be offered guidance and experience.

Maps

Maps indicating the location of the Macarthur Astronomy Forum and Members Observing Nights are available via the menu at the top of each page.

Public Observing Nights

Since 2000 we have held public observing nights at the UWS Rotary Observatory, in collaboration with the University of Western Sydney. We also hold public nights at The Dudley Chesham Sportsground, The Oaks.

MAS warmly welcomes all whom are interested to come along and share this great thing we call “our Universe” in all it’s beauty and wonder. A gold coin donation is all that it takes! (On hold during the public health crisis).

Community Observing Nights

We are dedicated to promoting astronomical awareness to the Macarthur community and we hold special viewing nights for Schools, Scout Groups and other community groups on request. (On hold during the public health crisis).

Section Leaders

To foster specific interests within the Society, section leaders have been appointed. If you are thinking to take up a particular aspect of Astronomy, then these people will be glad to help you. Awards for achieving observing targets and gaining experience are given by the section leaders.

Management

The day to day running of the Society is carried out on behalf of the members by the annually elected management committee.

Financial

Our financial year begins on 1st March each year. Whilst government regulations exclude the requirement to audit the Society’s accounts, our books are audited annually and the Auditor’s report is included in an annual report, presented to members prior to the AGM.

We are a ‘not-for-profit’ organisation – our public outreach events are usually free. Our income is mainly derived from membership fees, supplemented by merchandise sales, donations and fund-raising efforts.

  • If you would like to join MAS please go to our “Join MAS” page via the menu at the top of this page.
  • If you would like to buy MAS merchandise please e-mailĀ merchandise@macastro.org.au.
  • If you would just like to make a donation to MAS, thanks very much, please see our “Payments” page.

Transport

You must arrange your own transport.

Communications

Announcements are made on this website and on our Facebook page. Contact between members is by e-mail and/or our Private Message system.

Contact Us

Membership of our Society is open to anyone. We welcome your enquiries. Please email us at contact@macastro.org.au or write to us at The Secretary, Macarthur Astronomical Society, PO Box 17, MINTO, NSW 2566.

Enquiries or comments regarding this website can be directed to webmaster@macastro.org.au