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Tuesday, May 22

Keswick Mountain Festival event report

Saturday's events at the Keswick Mountain Festival were a great success overall. Our "Ask and Astronomer" display in the Theatre by the Lake was well attended by society members, although it proved a little hard to find for members of the public.

After clouds and rain put a dampener of our first solar observing session the second session was much more successful with 30-40 people stopping to look at the sun through Robin's specially filtered telescope and spectrograph.

The highlight of the day was the talk by BBC Sky at Night presenter Dr Chris Lintott. The event was well attended with over 50 people joining us in the Methodist Church hall in Keswick. Chris gave a fascinating talk on "The First Stars" and gave an insight into how dark matter influenced the formation of the first stars and how these stars subsequently influenced the formation of the rest of the universe.

After the talk Chris answered questions from the audience which continued throughout the refreshment break. After a quick cup of tea it was back down to the lake to set up in Crow Park for the evening's 'planetwatch' event.

The weather co-operated for once and were were treated to some fantastic views of Mercury, Venus and the moon. Chris Lintott was there all evening mingling with the observers answering their questions and displaying his enthusiasm for astronomy.

A special thanks must go to Robin for organising the whole thing and arranging for Chris to attend. Also to Gwen for acting as Chris' driver and providing refreshments in the evening.

Thanks also to Stuart for coming through from Kendal to assist with the displays during the day and to all CAS members who made the day a success; Bill, Tony, Caroline, Wes, Dave, Jeremy and others.

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