Observatory

The Charles and Kathryn Heide Schoolyard Observatory at Hawthorn Hollow features a Meade LX200 – ACF 16″ telescope on an Alt-Az mount in an automated dome as well as two mounts for smaller telescopes outside the dome. The observatory hosts daytime and nighttime field trips as well as star parties. Please send inquiries or requests for events to:

Upcoming Events

  • Monday, October 1 8:00pm – 9:00pm :

    Naked-eye Astronomy Class (Family Night)

    Find out how the Sun, Moon, planets, and stars move across our sky using just your eyes & brain and learn important points that we use to map the sky. ($5/family or $3/person)

  • Saturday, October 6 7:30pm – 10:30pm :

    Open House

    Come enjoy an evening of star gazing and telescope viewing. A variety of telescopes will be on hand with volunteers to guide you seeing the night’s brightest objects. You are also welcome to bring your own binoculars or telescopes.

  • Friday, October 12 8:00pm – 10:00pm :

    Galaxy Quest

    Journey to galaxies far far away through our 16″ telescope. See billions of stars in a single glance from our nearest galactic neighbors to ancient collections near the Big Bang. Register in advance since attendance is limited to 10 individuals. ($5/person)

  • Monday, October 29 8:00pm – 9:00pm :

    Naked-eye Astronomy Class (Adults Only)

    Find out how the Sun, Moon, planets, and stars move across our sky using just your eyes & brain and learn important points that we use to map the sky. ($3/person)

  • Saturday, November 3 7:00pm – 10:00pm :

    Open House

    Come enjoy an evening of star gazing and telescope viewing. A variety of telescopes will be on hand with volunteers to guide you seeing the night’s brightest objects. You are also welcome to bring your own binoculars or telescopes.

  • Friday, November 9 8:00pm – 10:00pm :

    Nebulae & Clusters

    See the dramatic clouds of gas and clusters of stars that exist throughout our galaxy through the mirrors and eyepieces of the 16″ telescope. Find out where these objects are so you can find them on your own. Register in advance since attendance is limited to 10 individuals. ($5/person)

  • Saturday, December 3 6:00pm – 10:00pm :

    Open House

    Come enjoy an evening of star gazing and telescope viewing. A variety of telescopes will be on hand with volunteers to guide you seeing the night’s brightest objects. You are also welcome to bring your own binoculars or telescopes.

  • Saturday, December 15 7:00pm – 10:00pm :

    Wirtanen Watch

    Come look for the close pass of a comet named after Kenosha-born astronomer Carl Wirtanen. Comet 46P/Wirtanen passes only 30 times the distance of the Moon from Earth on the following morning and may be bright enough to see unaided. You are still welcome to bring your own binoculars or telescopes and look at the Moon and other bright objects.


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