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I was recently listening to some vintage country music by Glen Campbell. He was singing “Southern Nights” which is one of my favourites. This song was a big hit for him in March 1977 as the it held the number 1 position in Billboard magazine for two straight weeks. Midway through the song we hear the lyrics “Southern Skies, have you ever noticed Southern Skies. Its precious beauty, lies just beyond the eye …..” and this is so true. As we venture outdoors on these warm July nights, we cast our eyes and telescopes south to the center of our home galaxy called the Milky Way.

The 2012 June 5-6 transit of Venus (ToV) is over, and there won't be another one till 2117! Many RASC members successfully viewed the ToV here and abroad, and the RASC ToV team would like your help in constructing a record of our ToV experiences from across the country and beyond. Send us your images and stories, and we'll share them with the rest of Canada and the world on a dedicated rasc.ca page. Even if you were clouded out, but have stories (and images of cursing astronomers) we'd like to hear (and see) them.

The Hamilton Centre Banquet is still on, but at a new location - Burlington Holiday Inn on the South Service Road.

Unfortunately the Oakville Holiday Inn where we are hosting our Swap Meet and Banquet suffered a catastrophic electrical transformer failure. It actually exploded and took out several load bearing walls.

We've had to postpone the swap meet as we can't find a new venue in time.  The new banquet location is:

Holiday Inn Burlington Hotel & Conference Centre
3063 South Service Road, Burlington, ON L7N 3E9
 

The Great 2012 Venus Transit

Well that magical moment is almost upon us. The anticipation of witnessing the planet Venus crossing the face of the Sun has been the buzz in the astronomical community for the past few months. It was eight short years ago on the morning of June 8, 2004 that the Sun rose in the north east, sporting a huge black spot. From Ottawa, the transit was past the halfway point with Venus ready to exit an hour later.

First Durham Insurance is pleased to present The RASC Group Property and Auto insurance program, exclusively for members of The Royal Astronomical Society of Canada. As a RASC member you will have exclusive access to a wide range of home and auto insurance products, while saving up to 60%.

The Canada Wide Science Fair was just held in Charlottetown, PEI. The event was spread out from the arrival date of May 12, 2012 to the departure date of May 19, 2012 and had over 500 participants. The RASC "Award for Excellence in Astronomy"  for a Junior went to Patrick Fraser [13]  of Avon Maitland-Huron Perth, Ontario on "The Confinable Cosmos".

Watch RASC members Jay Pasachoff, Ralph Chou, and R.A. Rosenfeld talk about the upcoming transit of Venus on http://www.youtube.com/user/UTSIC/videos. These presentations were videoed at the recent symposium on the transit presented by the Dunlap Institute, UTSIC, the RASC, and other sponsors.

The RASC's transit of Venus website now features the web premier of a piece of new/old transit of Venus (ToV) music. Ever wondered where all the 17th-18th century ToV themed music is? There's some evidence that it might have been part of the casual improvisatory musical culture of the time. Wonder what that would sound like? The RASC Archivist has created an example based on the bass pattern of a dance from John Blow's Venus and Adonis (1683).

More Galaxies and A Daytime Planet

 

Celebrate Astronomy Day!

Saturday, April 28, 2012

Toronto, Canada (April 26, 2012) – Members of the Royal Astronomical Society of Canada (RASC) and its 29 local RASC Centres will celebrate Astronomy Day this Saturday, April 28, 2012. Be on the lookout for telescopes and astronomers to pop up unexpectedly on street corners, in shopping malls and other public places, ready and eager to bring the universe down to Earth for everyone!

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