Jason Kendall
William Paterson University
Amateur Astronomers Association of New York

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Inwood Star Fest Update: April 3 (8:30 AM)
April 3, 2009

We are GO! We will be dodging some clouds, but we will be there! In the meantime, our thanks to Melissa Magee and the staff at New York FOX 5 News.  And Thanks to Jeremy Smerd and the New York Times for picking us up!If you can't make it tonight, The Uptown Planetarium is on Saturday, April 4 at 1:00 PM.

----On other news....The Inwood Star Fest would like to announce that it has hired at great expense, the Royal Luxembourg Flying Circus Clowne Troupe.  The Inwood Astronomy Project is pleased to bring the act, which include the amazing miniature dachshund Penny, who is able to do a triple gainer while a clowne plays kazoo.  The Clowne Troupe is known for its pratfalls and gags, most notorious is the "Autumnal Balkan Tea Ceremony in B Flat."  Delighting audiences worldwide with dramatic readings of local telephone books, and humorous interpretations of second-order heavy-ion plasma phase transitions, these clownes have put even the great Jeremy Smerd of the Daily Bugle into paroxisms of loughter: "Please make it stop!" he is quoted in his 37th contractually obligated review.  April Fool.

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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