Austin College’s Adams Observatory will open to the public on Friday, September 16, from 8:00 p.m. to 10:00 p.m. for a late summer Star Party. The event will be held rain or shine, though the use of telescopes may not be possible in the case of inclement weather. Skygazers should expect to see double stars and globular clusters through the telescopes. The event is free, open to all, and fully accessible to those with mobility conditions. Register to attend: www.austincollege.edu/starparty.
The event takes place in the College’s IDEA Center, 1108 E. Richards Street, with parking nearby. Visitors should meet in the IDEA Center’s first-floor Oscar C. Page Atrium, just inside the building’s main entrance, to begin their star tour. Austin College physics faculty Dr. David Baker and Dr. David Whelan, along with Austin College student volunteers, will facilitate tours for guests, while Sherman Public Library children’s librarian, Cassie Wickline, will hold a children’s space-themed story time.
Adams Observatory houses the largest research telescope in North Texas and smaller telescopes will complement the views available from the rooftop. “This is a unique opportunity to see amazing things in the night sky that you normally can’t see with the naked eye,” Baker said. “Something stirs inside of you when you look through a telescope of this size.”
Austin College, a private national liberal arts college located north of Dallas in Sherman, Texas, has earned a reputation for excellence in academic preparation, global awareness, pre-professional foundations, leadership development, committed faculty, and hands-on, adventurous learning opportunities. One of 40 schools profiled in Loren Pope’s influential book Colleges That Change Lives, Austin College boasts a welcoming community that embraces diversity and individuality, with more than 50 percent of students identifying as persons of color. The residential student body of approximately 1,300 students and an expert faculty of more than 100 educators allow a 12:1 student-faculty ratio and personalized attention. Related by covenant to the Presbyterian Church (USA), Austin College cultivates an inclusive atmosphere that supports students’ faith journeys regardless of religious tradition. The College, founded in 1849, is the oldest institution of higher education in Texas operating under original name and charter.