If you are interested in Astronomy, either a beginner or more, why not come and share this wonderful hobby with others who feel the same. The Society is full of different individuals with different interests in Astronomy (for example: visual observing, astrophotography, meteor viewing, naked eye observing, the history of astronomy, and other interesting areas).
Importantly, do not feel that you have to have a telescope to come along. Apart from the Society's various telescopes that are available to members to use, you will find other members who will be glad to share their equipment when viewing the heavens.
But if you are looking for something special, this Society has many reasons to consider joining. But remember, membership is not compulsory, but there are real advantages in joining, and these include:
- Being part of a dynamic, friendly group of local, active amateur astronomers who are willing to teach beginners and answer their many questions, as well as guide and encourage more advanced members.
- Monthly high quality meetings in a modern 135-seat theatrette (above) for dissemination of the latest astronomical and science information by members and invited special guest speakers. These meetings run parallel sessions enabling a choice of topics, and special access to astronomy and science videos. The monthly meetings are video taped and these can be borrowed from the society's library.
- An extensive library of hundreds of books, videos and CD ROM computer software related to astronomical topics. The library also contains newsletters published by other astronomical societies. Members can request items of interest for inclusion in the library as funds become available. Remote members are able to borrow library materials by post.
- A bimonthly newsletter journal providing details of astronomy happenings both locally and internationally.
- Access to purchasing special offers, such as astronomy videos, posters etc. that arise from time to time.
- An email newsgroup for rapidly alerting members of late breaking or privileged news, and late invitations to external science lectures.
- Regular member "club" viewing nights at the Society's dark sky Briars property on the Mornington Peninsula where an astronomical observatory is well under construction, and you can view the night skies through other members' telescopes without having to travel very long distances. Advice on telescopes and their optimal use is always readily available.
- Regular social events at least once a month, including BBQ's at each Briars site working bee and Telescope Learning Day, and an annual Christmas star-be-cue.
- Access to other members who are highly skilled in telescope making and all other aspects of astronomy.
- Special reduced rates for purchase of excellent annual Astronomical Almanacs of what is in the night sky throughout the year, planispheres and other astronomical materials. These are aimed from beginners to advanced amateurs.
- Privileged information about forthcoming astronomical phenomena and events.
- Privileged access to observing predictions for jovian satellite eclipses, variable stars, minor planet occultation's, lunar occultation's and meteors.
- Opportunity to participate in field observing events throughout the state, some of which pass their observations onto professional astronomers overseas.
- Access to the Society's laser telescope collimator and CCD camera eyepiece.
- Ability to attend educational public talks conducted by the Society for free.
- Ability to participate with school children and the wider community at Astronomy on the Move night sky viewing evenings.
- A website for dissemination of information.
- A telephone recording service (0419 253 252) and an email address (firstname.lastname@example.org) for answering remote members' specific questions.
- Access to biennial conferences of amateur astronomers, both state-wide with VASTROC and nation-wide with NACAA. The Mornington Peninsula Astronomical Society has hosted these several times.
- Discounts at certain camera and telescope outlets from time to time.
- Members can ask specific questions on any astronomy-related topic and have them answered either directly, in the bimonthly newsletter or at a future general meeting. This is typically via the Idea-Suggestion box at meetings, via telephone, via email or simply in person.
Astronomy can be real fun, and enjoying it with friends can make it really special.
Be part of the Society, Join (or renew) online or fill-out and return an application form located here.
There is also a 5 year membership for the price of 4.