Workshops

Telescopes for Beginners

Financial Members only, bookings essential

MAS conducts workshops to assist financial members of the Society who are beginners to find their way around the sky and learn how to get the most out of their telescopes. Members starting out in astrophotography with a DSLR camera on a tripod will also find this useful.

Next Workshop: 4 pm, Saturday 6th August

The Moon will be up and it will be a great opportunity to meet other members, find your way around the sky and learn how to get the most out of your telescope.

Image: Roger Powell

Location

Dudley Chesham Sports Ground, off Burragorang Road, The Oaks. 

When you arrive you will be directed to drive to your position. You must not drive on wet grass nor should you exceed 5 kph.

Time

Please ensure that you arrive on or before the designated start time. We will spend the period before sunset assisting you to set up your telescope and discussing how best to operate it. 

Viewing The Night Sky

We will first help you to find the Moon. Then, as the brightest stars begin to appear (about thirty minutes after sunset), we will look for any planets that may be visible.

As it gets darker we will move on to finding two or three deep sky objects, such as double stars, globular clusters, planetary nebulae, open clusters, gas nebulae or galaxies.

The MAS mentors will not be bringing their own telescopes – this is all about you bringing and using your own gear and having a fun time under the stars.

Weather

Stargazing is weather permitting. If conditions are in doubt due to inclement weather, please always check the Notice Board for announcements before leaving home.

Entry

Booking is essential.

Admission is for MAS members only and is free. If you wish to attend, please send us a message to book a place and let us know about the equipment that you will be bringing. Send to contact@macastro.org.au – we’d like to hear from you!

Safety

The pursuit of astronomy requires a dark environment and attendance is at your own risk. We can accept no responsibility for accidents that occur. Before it gets dark, you should spend a few minutes memorising your immediate surroundings.

If you choose to bring a torch, please cover it with three layers of red cellophane held on with a rubber band, to avoid glare when near the telescopes.

We also request that you refrain from using flash photography during the session. Thanks.

 🚫 We want to keep everybody safe, so MAS adopts a cautious approach to covid-19 and we ask you to respect the vaccination and other covid and influenza requirements listed on our Notice Board.

Comfort

The event is held in an exposed outdoor location, and the temperature is likely to be even colder than you might expect, so please bring extra warm clothing.

Public toilet facilities are located adjacent to the tennis courts near the main entrance to the sports ground.

What To Bring

  • official proof of vaccination status
  • your astronomy gear, with equipment manuals
  • a battery power source if needed (no mains power available)
  • pen and notepad
  • food and drink
  • very warm clothing
  • insect repellent
  • portable chairs
  • a red light torch

We strongly recommend the purchase of a Southern Hemisphere Planisphere and we will show you how to locate the stars using it. You can order one from Bintel or other good astronomy retailers.

Contact MAS

Our workshops are a great opportunity to learn about amateur astronomy and meet other members. If after reading this you wish to book a place, or have any queries about the event please send your questions to either John at contact@macastro.org or Greg at macdob@macastro.org.au.

More?

Please also read about our field protocols on our Field Night page.

You can read more about starting out in astronomy at our Members Articles page.