Friends of Galileo started with an amazing first year. During the spring of 1995, Chuck Ring and Sue Piper were instrumental in attracting local astronomy aficionados to our charter meeting in May. That spring’s evening sky was enshrined on our club T-shirts (except for a reversed crescent Moon).
Nine industrious novices built their own Newtonian telescopes with Dobsonian mounts (“Dobs”), directed by Carl Zambuto (Nisqually Valley Telescope Maker’s Workshop). Zambuto is now a nationally respected telescope mirror manufacturer. He supervised them grinding their own 6” or 8” parabolic mirrors in Bert Jepson’s garage.
When all nine telescopes were finished, FOG invited John Dobson, Ph.D. to talk at our “first light party”, i.e. a first look at the sky through their new telescopes.
Dr. Dobson had us spellbound with his 2+ hours discussion of cosmology and the universe. Dobson was already internationally known for inventing the “Dobsonian telescope” design and for starting public “Sidewalk Astronomy” viewing in San Francisco.
Our December 1995 meeting was FOG’s first Christmas Party, with a presentation of theories of the “Star of Bethlehem” by Mark Thorson.
Friends of Galileo Astronomy Club is dedicated to sharing our enjoyment of astronomy through educational programs, by observing the cosmos, and serving our community as amateur astronomers. (Our bylaws say, “as a non-profit association dedicated to advancing the understanding and enjoyment of astronomy through educational programs, practical experiences, and social interactions”).
FOG’s most notable accomplishments include:
Mark Thorson, charter member of FOG
Friends of Galileo
We are astronomy enthusiasts who love to learn and to share our wonder at the amazing sights right overhead.