Jason Kendall
William Paterson University
Amateur Astronomers Association of New York

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Inwood Star Fest
A Celebration of Astronomy in New York City

Friday, April 3rd, 8:00 PM to 10:30 PM
All of the Park Lights Were Turned Off!

This Was the First Time in New York City History that a Park's Lights Were Darkened for Astronomy.

Thanks to everyone who showed and braved the rain and the clouds. In spite of the bad weather we had 50 people at the entrance at 8pm, and about 30 more people walked through during the evening. The skies cleared in patches at 10:00 PM for about 20 minutes. We were able to see Saturn quite well through the scopes, as well as great Moon images. Thanks to the Parks, everyone who showed and the intrepid amateurs who braved quite a night with their equipment.

Check Out Our Media Coverage!

Photo by Roni Mocan

All Inwood Astronomy Project Events are Free and Open to the Public.

Made possible by the generous support of the New York City Department of Parks and Recreation.

Tied in with the 100 Hours of Astronomy Cornerstone Project of the International Year of Astrononmy, New York City is making a great foray into science education and astronomy outreach. Thanks to the perserverance and vision of the New York City Parks, the stars will only be a subway ride away.

Also Featured at this Event...

A Special Performance of "Up Up Up in the Sky"
Written and Composed by Donna Stearns
An official song of the International Year of Astronomy.

The singers for this special performance of "Up Up Up in the Sky" were Donna Stearns, Brady Amoon, Megan Cooper, Floryn Glass, Matt Gordon, Jason Holtham, Brendan Rothman-Hicks and Eric Vetter. Thanks to you all!


Jason would like to personally thank all of the following people and groups for their support and their work which made this event a reality.

The Amateur Astronomers Association of New York, specifically Rich Rosenberg, the President of the AAA, and the entire Board of Directors.

The New York City Parks department, specifically Commissioner Castro, Jennifer Hoppa and Linda Huntington for their vision, persistence and perserverance.

Jeremy Smerd and The New York Times.

New York FOX 5's Melissa Magee and New York FOX 5 News

Columbia University Astronomy Outreach program with Cameron Hummels and Robert Morehead.

Dr. Donald Lubowich, who gave me a great opportunity and helped set my feet on this path.

The NASA/JPL Solar System Ambassadors Program and Kay Ferrari

Holly Barton and the American Museum of Natural History and Dr. Neil deGrasse-Tyson for being a vanguard of New York City Astronomy.

Mayor Michael Bloomberg
Manhattan Borough President Scott Stringer
New York State Assemblymember Herman D. Farrell, Jr.
New York State Assemblymember Adriano Espaillat
New York State Assemblymember Linda B. Rosenthal: (who introduced Light Pollution Abatement legislation!)
New York State Senator Eric T. Schneiderman
Congressman Charles B. Rangel
Senator Kirsten Gillibrand and
Senator Charles Schumer

Also, I would like to thank The New York Public Library and Head Librarian Judy Rodriguez of the Inwood Branch for her belief and support in the IAP. Also fellow neighborhood astronomers Bruce Kamiat, Andre Stevens, Howard Fink and Elvin Garcia. Connie Vasquez, Dan Pinkus, The Piper's Kilt, Dr. Steven Tushman, Dr. Kevin Marvel. Dr. James Pierce, Dr. Jon Hakkila, Dr. Angela Speck, Dr. Jack Burns, Dr. Christi Whitworth, The entire group at the International Dark Sky Association, and the American Astronomical Society. Also, Leo Smith, Dougas Arion, Andrea Schweitzer, Connie Walker, Stephen Pompea, Doug Isbell, Kristina Harding, Susana Deusta, J. Holtham and the entire U.M.E. Gang, and all the Astronomy Singers, The Big Bangers: Matt Gordon, Eric Vetter and Clara Barton Green. Donna Smith, Nancy Bruning, Mike Robinson, Larry and Lindel Furtsch, David Teich, Yianni and Ali Stamas, Amy Fass, Sacha Tomic.

I would also like to thank my employer Cantor-Fitzgerald/BGC Partners for their support through the years, and in particular my managers Matt Wyant and Ankush Rai.

And most importantly, my lovely and talented wife Donna Stearns. Without her love, help and support, this would be impossible.

About Jason Kendall

I am currently adjunct faculty at William Paterson University teaching astronomy. I hold a Master of Science in Astronomy from New Mexico State University. I am also a board member of the Amateur Astronomers Association of New York. Since 2008, I have led the Inwood Astronomy Project which brought over 200 events of stargazing and public astronomy outreach to upper Manhattan, including the historic Inwood Star Fest, where Inwood Hill Park lights were turned off as part of the 100 Hours of Astronomy event in IYA2009. This was the first time in New York City history when park lights were turned off for an astronomy event. I've also focused on park safety due to an uptick in sexual assaults in Washington Heights and Inwood during 2011. I've worked to make our parks safer by encouraging public use of parks at night through night-time events with Park Rangers. I have led numerous "starwatching parties" and astronomy events in New York City, New Mexico, Minnesota, New Jersey, Connecticut and Texas. I am also proud to have been part of the NASA/JPL Solar System Ambassador Program from 2009 to 2012. It all started way back in the fourth grade by the encouragement of two noted astronomers, Charles Schweighauser and Bart Bok. I saw Saturn through Charlie's telescope at then Sangamon State University on a clear Illinois night, and Bart encouraged me under those stars to study hard to come visit him at Kitt Peak National Observatory. I finally did make it down there about a decade after Bart passed away, and I found the favorite spots in Tucson, Arizona, where Bart and his wife Priscilla would spend when they were not gazing at the stars. Bart and his wife were pioneers in the study of the Milky Way, and their studies of the starforming regions called Bok Globules. It's even in my family. My great-grandfather was a Midwestern minister who used to preach his sermons out under the dark, cloudless nights. He always believed that getting out and experiencing the wonders of the natural world was a central part of being human. My family has always been inspired by his words: "We look up to look within." I hope that you'll join me under the stars or at one of my talks.

Come see what's up in the sky!

Jason Kendall

We look up to look within

William Paterson University Department of Physics American Astronomical Society Astronomical Society of the Pacific Amateur Astronomers Association of New York

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