It was great seeing you astronomers at the annual picnic last month. There was a costume parade, door prizes, and the official opening of the new bunkhouse. We also presented the first recipient the HAS Texas 45 Astrophotography award. How fitting that it was followed by beautiful clear skies for observing and imaging alike.
Did we have five or was it six students from one of the local colleges operating the observatory f/5? So many members with telescopes were on the field. Or taking in the observatory tour. Or the loaner telescope lab. Or lining up for a peek through the C14.
A highlight had to be the squealing of children at the Kids SIG as they saw their first shooting star streak across the Milky Way. Moms and dads, I heard you, too.
For me, the picnic marked the end of an era that started in 2009. Each 1st Friday you could find me at the back of UH SR1 Room 117 serving coffee and chatting astronomy. From there, I served wherever needed, and not just coffee.
We need you now, too, and I do hope you'll be at the November 3rd annual membership meeting at the University of Houston. We need your vote on the 2018 leadership and on updates to the bylaws that will make the club even more inclusive and easier to run.
I'll still be onboard; quite literally as immediate past president for the next year. But you’ll more likely find me at the dark site in my private observatory. It’s time for a change, and I’m looking forward to it.
Is there any club like H.A.S.? Any friends like those you've met here? I haven't found so. I'm so grateful to have been a part, and serving wherever needed. Especially coffee.
Rene Gedaly, President
Houston Astronomical Society