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The February 2016
President's Report
from Olaf Lutz...



New and Noteworthy:

  Many thanks to Scott Thompson for volunteering to take on the job of Merchandise Manager. There will be Calendars next year after all.
  Plans are currently underway for the National President, James Edgar, to speak to the Okanagan Centre in April of this year. There will be an official announcement at a later time but it would be beneficial to get a feel for what the attendance might be to help in booking a venue for the talk. If you think that you may like to attend then contact me via the link below.

UPCOMING MEETINGS:

Vernon: - Wednesday February 24,2016
  The Novice Meeting at 6.30pm will feature member John Kerr on 'Light Pollution’, an exploration of our society's wasteful use of light and how to set up effective, non-polluting outdoor lighting.
  The main program at 7.15pm will feature member Colleen O'Hare who will present 'Gravity, the curving of Space-Time', looking at a few different ways to imagine the warping of space-time by a mass.
  Member Jim Kanester will present an Observing Challenge for March.
  The pre-meeting session and the regular meeting will be in the Heritage Hall on the corner next to the Okanagan Science Centre on the east side of Polson Park just off Highway 6.

Kelowna: - Tuesday February 23, 2016
  The main presentation on February 23 will be titled 'The Worlds of Jupiter' - our solar system's second 'solar system’ by Dave Gamble who will trace the growing interest in Jupiter following the discovery of its main moons by Galileo in 1610, culminating in an exciting series of space vehicles to the giant planet. As well as the landmark discoveries by the Galileo spacecraft, Dave will feature news on the very latest probes including Juno which will arrive this July 4.
    There will be no Constellation of the Month at this meeting to allow Treasurer Dennis Krause to present the OC RASC 2016 Budget.
   The meeting will be held at 7:30pm in the Lab Building at the Okanagan College Kelowna Campus in Room C368.

Penticton: - Thursday February 25, 2016
  Dave Gamble will reprise his ’The Worlds of Jupiter' - our solar system's second 'solar system' program which was given at the Kelowna meeting. Look for lots of pictures, including video clips telling the cliff-hanging story of the perils experienced by the Galileo spacecraft and what it discovered. Included will be an inside look at plans for the next future mission to the water world Europa which may include a lander probe!
  The Constellation of the Month will be by Angela Squires who will spotlight the constellation Cepheus.
  The meeting will be held at 7.15pm in the regular C O2 meeting room in the Sunoka building of the Penticton campus of Okanagan College.

ASTRONOMICAL PICTURE OF THE MONTH:
  "Maybe we haven't seen enough stars lately..." was one of the reasons that Picture of the Month Selection Committee members Mark Force and Sharon Carter chose James Kanester's portrait of 'M45 the Pleiades cluster' as the February Picture of the Month.  
  Mark noted that James' picture closely resembles an eyepiece impression of the wonderful cluster, a thought that Sharon echoed, "... because I am thrilled when I can personally observe them." Details and the picture can be found here: http://rascoc.zenfolio.com/p69764755/h1a93e0f9#h1a93e0f9
  Although there were no new picture postings during the cloudy month of January, Sharon and Mark had a wide selection of other contenders in the Zenfolio gallery to consider. Among their runners up were Shawn Berglund's 'Aurora over Vernon' (3), Debra and Peter Ceravolo's, 'Aurora meets Milky Way' (5), Jim Failes' Fading In, Fading Out' (2), And Hugh Pett's sequence of Blue and Green Flashes (6 & 7).
  These and many more excellent pictures, sketches and videos by our members can be found here: http://rascoc.zenfolio.com/f166015629

OKANAGAN OBSERVATORY:
Thanks to the efforts of our dedicated volunteers, the Land Occupation License renewal process is well underway. The new license, if approved, will nearly double the area of the Okanagan Observatory and provide ample space to accommodate our future plans.

OUTREACH EVENTS:
  In the past month there has been some discussion surrounding the Criminal Record Check requirement for outreach volunteers and I would like to add a couple of points for the sake of clarity. The Criminal Record Check is a requirement of the Provincial Gov’t and applies to us because we receive Provincial Gov’t funding, see here. The complete   Criminal Records Review Act can be accessed via the links, below. Everyone should also check their membership status. If you intend to participate in outreach programs, make sure your membership is up to date.

Links:
Observatory Clear Sky Chart
RASC Okanagan Centre
RASC National
Zenfolio
Focus
Live Comet Data
Satellite Tracker
Criminal Records Review Act
Criminal Record Check Information
CONTACT: OLAF LUTZ