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Celebrate 400 years of Telescope Making

Post Convention Photos and Reports

Post Convention pages are "complete" now, meaning I have posted all the material I have. However, I know there is more coming, so it's not too late to send in your photos or reports.

2008 Stellafane Convention Main Page

The 73rd Convention of Amateur Telescope Makers on Breezy Hill in Springfield, Vermont, the 2008 Stellafane Convention, was held Thursday through Saturday July  31- August 2, 2008. Here you will find reports and photos of the 2008 Convention.

Suggestions

Do you have a suggestion to improve any aspect of convention? We would like to hear about it! Please send them via email here.

We are very interested in feedback, comments or suggestions on the new beginners program. We would like to improve it for next year.

Thanks to All!

The Springfield Telescope Makers would like to thank all those who attended the 2008 Stellafane Convention and made it a success. The Convention is all about sharing ideas and knowledge, renew and making new acquaintances, and enjoying shared observing sessions. You make the Convention what it is, and we thank you for participating! We would also like to say Thank You for the many generous contributions we received in support of paying off the Flanders Pavilion mortgage.

Convention Summary

Breezy Hill on Saturday
Breezy Hill on Saturday, August 2

We had two very good nights of observing (Thursday and Friday) and got the optical judging done on Friday night. Saturday morning was dry and we had a good showing for the telescope mechanical competition. We closed with rain starting Saturday afternoon and continuing through the evening. The pavilion was snug and dry, so the afternoon Tech Talks and Saturday Evening Program were not affected by the weather, but unfortunately could not provide a third night of observing.

The club held an optical glass sale at the swap tables which was well received and will help pay off the pavilion mortgage.

For the second year in a row, attendance at special workshops focusing on advanced topics (this year, a workshop on OSLO optical design software) was very strong, and we will work to add more advanced topics in the future, without impacting our well attended novice level programs which also get good attendance.

While we did not set an attendance record this year, we were pleased with the turnout. Many other amateur astronomy gatherings have seen a very significant decrease in attendance this year in the face of high transportation costs and a weak economy while Stellafane attendance was only slightly lower than past years. The second year of early entry on Thursday continued to have good participation also.

Finally, we made a strong push to provide more convenience to our attendees and reduce our costs by offering a more robust online registration process. This was well received and seemed to work well for everyone.

Program

This page contains an Overall Schedule of Events, including a printable version, and detailed information about the events and activities at the 2008 Convention:

Special Events to celebrate the 400th Anniversary of the Invention of the Telescope

To help celebrate the 400th anniversary of the first patent application for the invention of the telescope, we are scheduling the following special events:

Telescope Hunt The Telescope Hunt will be similar to a scavenger hunt, in that partici-pants will look for posters, scattered about the convention area, each showing a different type of telescope which must be identified. Poster Session Tell us what you think is the most important astronomical discovery using a telescope and win a prize. Vote for your favorite answer in the Pavilion.
Click the links for more details, times and locations.

ATM Mirror Grinding Demo Saturday Technical Talks Children's Activities
ATM Short Talks Beginner Talks Horseshoe Pitching Contest
OSLO Workshop Solar System Walk Jeanne Krzywicki Library
Friday Evening Informal Talks Saturday Evening Program Museum of Telescope Making
Swap Tables Raffle  

Also see a summary of the many Talks given at convention, including and explanation of each type of talk, and categorized by level (kids, beginner, intermediate and advanced). Note that there are many talks for beginners, all clearly marked in this list.

A Big Thank You to our Raffle Donors!

The Springfield Telescope Makers would like to thank the following people and/or companies for donating prizes to the raffle at the 2007 Stellafane convention. In no particular order, we thank:

Tele Vue Optics
Al Nagler
Willmann-Bell
Perry & Patricia Remaklus
Roger W. Tuthill
Nancy Tuthill
Howie's Laser Collimators
Howie Glatter
Astronomy Shoppe
Tony Costanzo
Central Maine Astronomical Society
Lenny Arsenault
NASA JPL
Solar System Ambassador Program
New Hampshire Astronomical Society
Dan Smith
Orvis - Flagship Store
Dan Ovington, Manager

The money raised from the raffle goes to support next year's convention and to make capital improvements to the convention site. We appreciate the generous donations of the above people and companies, and the attendees support by purchasing raffle tickets. Thank you all very much!

Call for Convention
Photos & Reports

We would like to add your photos or convention report to our web pages. Your experiences gives a much more comprehensive view of the convention then we can do ourselves. Please send them via email here.

Photo Gallery

Here is the 2008 Convention Photo gallery, with candid images taken by the Springfield Telescope Makers and many attendees who send us photos they have taken (See the pink box at right if you have photos to send us for posting on our web page).

Reports

Convention reports from our attendees are posted here, giving you another view of the events and observations that various attendees had. If you have report, please send it to us (see box at upper right).

Telescope Competition

Often considered the heart of the Stellafane Convention, the Optical & Mechanical Competition gives Amateur Telescope Makers a chance to show and share with others what they have done, and our expert judges pick the best in several categories to for recognition with awards. This page shows all the telescopes entered in the competition, and the awards that many have won.

At right, a mechanical judging team examines a telescope.

Convention Workers

It takes a lot of work to put on the convention, and we would like to thank all the volunteers and members who work so hard before, during and after convention to make it a success. Here's a photo gallery of many of the people who made it happen this year (and the majority who have made it happen for many years). Thank you all very much!

General Information

Our general information page has exactly that - general information about the convention. Read about our Lighting Policy or the use of Family Service Radios, for example. Lots of important little items that might make your convention experience that much better: what to bring - where the food services are located.

The 2008 Convention Bulletin in PDF format, suitable for printing.

Directions & Maps

Need to know how to get to Stellafane? Here are written directions and a map for after you get of the Interstate.

 

Lodging & Campgrounds

If you are not camping at Stellafane, you will need some place to stay. Here is a listing of Motels, Hotels, B&Bs, and campgrounds in the area.


Do you have convention questions we haven't answered? Comments or suggestions about the Bulletin or Registration Supplement?  Please direct these to our Convention Mailbox.

Do you have a comment, question or suggestion about the web pages or online registration process? Please direct these to the Stellafane Webmaster.

Page last revised on Sunday, 2010-Jul-11 10:50:27 -0400