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The Canadian Astronomical Society (CASCA) has announced that the 2011 winner of the Peter G. Martin Award for Mid-career Achievement by a CASCA member is Dr. Roberto Abraham (University of Toronto). Dr. Abraham is a member of the Toronto Centre and currently serves as their Honorary President. The complete story is on the Toronto Centre website.

Another of our Honorary Members has passed today. Leif Robinson, for many years Editor of Sky & Telescope magazine, died this morning. See the tribute from his colleagues at Sky & Telescope.

It is with great sadness we announce the passing of Brian Gerald Segal. Brian was a member of the RASC Halifax Centre and executive; he was the designer and layout artist of the RASC Journal, and worked on the Observer’s Calendar and other RASC advertising and promotions. Our deepest sympathies go to his wife Julia Redgrave, his family and friends.

Position Statement of The Royal Astronomical Society of Canada

On Green Laser Pointer Usage

The Royal Astronomical Society of Canada’s (RASC) mission is to encourage improved understanding of astronomy for all, through education, outreach, research, publication, partnership, enjoyment, and community. The RASC advocates the safe and responsible use of green laser pointers (GLPs).

A Dozen Bright Dots

There is something about cold winter nights that make the stars shine a bit brighter than usual. Could it be the lack of haze – the kind we experience on sultry July and August nights? Or could it be the fact we can only last for a short period of time in the extreme cold. These are all valid reasons but the fact of the matter is Orion the Hunter and its neighbouring constellations represent a dozen of the brightest stars in the winter sky.

Big Horns, Little Horns

Of the 88 constellations that divide our dear skies, 40 portray the starry outline of animals. Some appear warm and cuddly like Lepus the Hare or the majestic winged horse Pegasus while others seemed wild and ferocious like Ursa Majoris. At this time of year none is more dangerous than Taurus the Bull. With its prominent V shaped horns, thanks to the Hyades cluster located 150 light years from us, mythology paints the picture of the bull taking on Orion the Hunter in battle. The entire cluster spans some five degrees across with the prominent first magnitude star named Aldebaran.

Below are a couple of links from the Astronomy Society of the Pacific regarding welcoming (an re-welcoming?) members to meetings to help ease some of the awkwardness and assumptions regarding astronomy.

Help make new members feel welcomed and appreciated... we were all new at one time... A nice reminder regarding a mentor 'facilitator' as well.

The link is mentions "clubs" but it is also relevant to EPO activities!

Recent changes in National Office and tentative marketing and membership initiatives we are looking for a couple of members interested in participating in the development of the new RASC Marketing, Promotions, and Membership services.

Please contact Chris Weadick (MAP Chair) with any questions and request to help form part of the new RASC Strategy!

Thanks in advance
Chris Weadick
MAP Chair
chris.weadick @ gmail.com

Has your centre been doing outreach events? We’d love to have your information for future fund raising efforts. Now you can go online and report your numbers quickly and easily. It only takes a minute. Go to www.rasc.ca and click the link on the lower left hand side of our home page.

RASC member Tim Doucette is in the news again! Tim, a noted astrophotographer and visual observer, is legally blind. That, however, does not stop him from doing quality astronomy, and encouraging others to do the same through the RASC.

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