General Info: PLEASE READ
Note: Observing is weather dependant -see Weather Information note at right.

BAS Meeting Locations: (not weather dependant)
Meetings happen at 7 pm (first Wed of the Month)
Note: No BAS meeting occur in January or February due to travel issues in winter months. Next BAS meeting is at 7 pm April 4, 2018 at
OSDSS Bailey Hall Rm 315 map here: OSDSS Bailey Hall rm 315.

ES Fox Observatory (ONLY on summer dates in 2018: June 6, July 4, Aug 1, Sep 5 ) (washrooms are available) (map)

The next regular monthly meeting of BAS is at 7 pm Apr 4, 2018 at Bailey Hall rm 315 OSDSS. Topic: Astronomy Trivia Night

BAS Observing Locations: (all locations are handicap accessible)
Observing happens mostly at the ES Fox Observatory (3092 Bruce Rd 13) but there are other venues periodically. See the list below for location details.

Most o
bserving locations are “remote locations” meaning there are NO permanent on-site washroom facilities. A portable washroom is located near the Fox Observatory for the summer months only and the washrooms are available at the Learning Centre (key required) at other times.

BAS Observing Events (dates listed below) occur at the ES Fox Observatory (3092 Bruce Rd 13) at the Bluewater Outdoor Ed Centre. Viewing at the observatory is WEATHER DEPENDENT. See notes below for more about weather.

Best observing occurs during NM and LQ. When the Moon brightens the sky at FQ and FM fainter objects are not as easily seen. The Moon, planets, and star clusters are usually visible even during FM nights using our GOTO telescope.

Note: Observing events at the Fox Observatory are open to the public on public viewing nights ONLY. We are not open during weekdays or evenings during the school year. Refer to each listing below for details. School-aged children are always free and welcome to attend with parents or guardians on public nights. Contact us by phone (519-379-7709) or email ahead of time. Donations to support our activities are gratefully accepted.

BAS member impromptu observing also occurs at the Fox Observatory. These are restricted to current members who must notify the organizer that you are coming. Members wishing to be put on the notification list please email Brett T. at or John H. at
The list of Astronomy Events for 2018 is available here:
ASTRONOMY EVENTS 2018. There is a separate list of BAS CLUB events for 2018 here: 2018 BAS CLUB EVENTS


ALL observing events require clear skies. If it is overcast or raining, the observing event will NOT be possible. If you arrive at the venue, there may not be any BAS members there. However, BAS monthly (indoor) meetings occur rain or shine.

If skies are partly cloudy, check the ES Fox Observatory
Clear Sky Clock for weather prospects or call 519-379-7709 to confirm the event.

This list was updated feb 25 and includes events for Feb to April 2018.

Note: BAS meetings are NOT held in January and February but impromptu observing sessions continue on weekends at the Fox Observatory. Contact Brett T. at or John H. at to be put on the alert list for these.

Stargazing at the Fox Observatory is only possible weather permitting and ONLY on official BAS-sponsored events. There is NO general public access to the facility at other times. When visiting the observatory, park in the lot near the Learning Centre and walk to the observatory please. Washrooms at the Learning Centre will be available for all BAS-sponsored events and a portable washroom is on site for the summer.

The next BAS meeting occurs on Mar 7, 2018 at 7 pm at Bailey Hall Rm 315 OSDSS. Click for floor-plan.


Selected Astronomical and BAS Club events: Feb 2018 to April 2018:

(Times are in 24-hr format unless otherwise noted).

Note: there are no regular BAS meetings in Jan or Feb, only impromptu viewing at Fox Observatory or other locations (like Sauble Beach) weather-permitting.

March 2018

Mar 03 (Sat) Mercury and Venus appulse in western sky. Venus rounded the Sun in January and February and is now emerging in the western sky as an Evening Star. Mercury moving much quicker has caught up and will pass Venus, climb to its farthest distance away from the Sun by Mar 15 and then start back towards the Sun. So for a time there will be two Evening Stars in the west after sunset. Minimum separation of 1° 4 minutes occurs on Mar 3 around the time the pair are setting in the west. See Sky Sights for a diagram.

Mar 07 (Wed) BAS meets at 7 pm at Bailey Hall in OSDSS in Owen Sound. Floorplan here: Bailey Hall We will also meet at the same venue on Apr 4 and May 2. After that meetings are at the Fox Observatory Jun 6, Jul 4, Aug 1 and Sep 5. Meetings Oct to Dec will likely be Bailey Hall again but this is to be confirmed.There are two speakers for the Mar 7 meeting, Brett Tatton does a summary of Messier viewing for the Mar 17 Messier Marathon at the Fox Obs. We also have Rhett Mackend of the K-W Centre talking about the pleasures star parties and mutual activities for our two clubs. Download a listing here of 2018 BAS Club EVENTS.

Mar 18 (Sun) Crescent Moon, Venus and Mercury alignment in west.
The first crescent Moon and two planets line up nicely in the west after sunset. Above the group is the much fainter planet Uranus but binoculars will help you spot it. Check the diagram of the grouping on the Sky Sights page.

Mar 28 (Wed) Venus and Uranus only 4 minutes separation. Venus meets up with another planet above the western horizon this evening. Uranus at magnitude 6 will not be as easy to pick out as Mercury was earlier in the month but the separation is a mere 4 minutes of arc just as the two planets set in the west on March 28. See SKY SIGHTS for details.

Mar 31 (Sat) Second Full Moon in March rises 8:08 pm EDT.
Another “Blue Moon”…

April 2018

Apr 02 (Mon) Appulse of Saturn and Mars. Look in the direction of Sagittarius to spot a a beautiful appulse of the ringed and red planets, Saturn and Mars. Mars has been cruising towards Saturn all spring and it finally passes below it (1°15min) around 4 am this morning. Look for the nice globular cluster M22 even closer than Saturn just to the right of Mars. The only thing spoiling the show is a nearly full moon in the western sky at this time.

Apr 04 (Wed)
BAS meets at 7 pm at Bailey Hall in OSDSS in Owen Sound. Floorplan here: Bailey Hall
We will also meet at the same venue on May 2. After that meetings are at the Fox Observatory Jun 6, Jul 4, Aug 1 and Sep 5. Meetings Oct to Dec will likely be Bailey Hall again but this is to be confirmed.The topic for the Apr meeting, is our Annual fun night: Astronomy Trivia Contest! Download a complete listing here of 2018 BAS Club EVENTS. if you wish a preview of future sessions.

Apr 18 (Wed) Aldebaran 1.1° from Crescent Moon, Venus and Pleiades nearby. A nice grouping of the Hyades, Venus and the Pleiades tonight with the 3-day old crescent sitting in the centre of the Hyades Cluster. Aldebaran is about 3 degrees to the Moon’s left, M45 is about 12 degrees to its right and Venus is about 15 degrees right and down from the crescent, -a nice grouping for a wide angle view. The Moon quickly leaves the scene but you can watch Venus for the next week or so track between the Hyades and Pleiades from Apr 24 to about Apr 30. The opportunity to get a nice image in dark sky is not available this time around since the Moon is brightening as Venus crosses the space between the two clusters. However, if you are OK with a crescent Moon in the field, try for some images from Apr 15 or so with Venus lower down and before the crescent Moon brightens the scene too much.

Apr 22 (Sun) Lyrid Meteor shower. If you can call a rate of 20/h a meteor shower then that’s what peaks tonight at 6 pm. Unfortunately, the FQ moon is in the sky at the time. The best time to observe the Lyrids would be after moonset around 3 am and with Lyra halfway to its highest point in the sky. The International Meteor Organization has released its 2018 Meteor Shower Calendar here: IMO Meteors 2018. Check it out for details of this and other showers that peak this year. Heads up! the Perseids in 2018 will be accompanied by a mere 4% (1-day old) Moon!

Apr 24 to 29 (Tue to Sun) Venus travels between Hyades and Pleiades. Over this interval Venus is closest to both the Hyades Cluster and the Seven Sisters. On Apr 24 it is closest to M45 (3.5° or so) and at the end it is closest to the Hyades (about 6° or so). See the Apr 18 information above for more details. Note that the Moon will be waxing gibbous at the start of this interval and full around Apr 29.

Apr 29 (Sun) Mercury Greatest Western Elongation (27°W) This is not a great viewing opportunity for Mercury as a Morning Star because it is in a part of its orbit where it does not get very high from our horizon. Even at best, there is less than an hour of time between Mercury rise and sunrise and the sky is rapidly brightening all the while. The next time Mercury appears in the western sky in early summer (once again joining Venus) will be a better opportunity to see this speedy planet.

A list of ASTRONOMY EVENTS FOR 2018 is available here: ASTRONOMY EVENTS 2018. Note that this list is amended periodically to correct or add events.

Alan Dyer’s astronomical calendar for 2018 (with diagrams of sky sights) is available for download here: Amazing Sky Calendar 2018. Be sure to visit Alan Dyer's website here: