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Old 06-23-2014, 07:31 PM   #11
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SKnight, I am not condemning what you were doing, rather just offering a viewpoint that the complainant may have had. I think what you were doing is great! You just may want to pick a better location to dispel any misconceptions.
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Old 06-23-2014, 07:34 PM   #12
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1. Scope was pointed up. Not at any of the 9' in the air, frosted over windows.

2. It can't point that low anyhow.

3. He didn't seem bothered by the partiers one site over.

4. If a kid walked up, I asked where their parents were and that they needed to get them. I've been doing public outreach for nearly 20 years, there's rules of engagement. Parents present (Of which there were anywhere from 3-6 adults there at a time.) or I won't say good evening to a kid.

5. All of you are MORE than welcome to keep walking if you ever see me setup. Meanwhile, I'll keep educating those interested in the night sky.
I am with you!

As an avid sky watcher you go where there is a view of the sky sector you want to look at. Having a group takes the "creepy" out of it.

Hauling out the telescope brings out all kinds of folks looking for an after dark activity. My C-130 Navigator (Val) was the director at the Fels Planetarium at the Franklin Institute in Philadelphia. Camping next to him with his motor driven sky tube was always AMAZING.

Watch On...
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Old 06-23-2014, 07:43 PM   #13
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I don't think anyone who responded in a manner not totally supportive of you meant to offend.

It's entirely possible that the old dude didn't even know it was a telescope, not a super-duper binocular (monocular).

In retrospect, don'tcha think #5 was a bit harsh?
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Old 06-23-2014, 07:45 PM   #14
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I'm in the minority here and I think it's great night sky education you are providing to others who are interested.
I own a telescope as well and have thought about taking it along a on trip. I would love someday to return to Dead Horse State Park (UT), as it felt as though you could reach up and "touch" the stars.
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Old 06-23-2014, 08:02 PM   #15
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Personally it takes a few seconds of observations to realize that nothing wrong was being done. Now of course I didn't see what was going on, but I think it would be obvious to a passersby what was going on. I think the grump was just not thinking.
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Old 06-23-2014, 08:07 PM   #16
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Personally it takes a few seconds of observations to realize that nothing wrong was being done. Now of course I didn't see what was going on, but I think it would be obvious to a passersby what was going on. I think the grump was just not thinking.
Or perhaps he was under the impression it could easily have been done somewhere other than right by the bathrooms, or 100' from his RV?

With limited information, it appears he was satisfied with the information he *was* given, since he obviously didn't go report it to a camp host.
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Old 06-23-2014, 08:13 PM   #17
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I don't see an issue here if you were pointing it at the bathhouse it would be a different story. Its becoming a sad world many are becoming paranoid these days. Our favorite campgrounds have 11PM to 7AM quiet times & security enforces it. But if you are reasonable at your site no issues.

We still to this day feel perfectly safe in any campground that we stay at & have never had an issue. Even though there can be issues even a murder (but they were from the same small town) (teens) but that campground has well over 10 thousand visitors on a given summer day ( I have heard 40 thousand on busy holiday weekends). We just don't go on the summer July 4th holiday. Not because of potential crime just too many people........ just enjoy.....

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Old 06-23-2014, 08:16 PM   #18
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Personally I can see both sides to this one, would I want my daughter to be a victim in a situation like this, absolutely not, would she like to take a look, I'm sure, just as I would. I rather enjoy getting into the country so I can actually SEE the stars. I think what you are doing is fine, as said before, these are different times, when I grew up any one could run around any time and not think twice, nowadays I struggle with my girls out of my sight.
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Old 06-23-2014, 08:34 PM   #19
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SKnight, keep doing what you do. You handled yourself with better class than the watchdog dude.....flashlight in the eyes during the conversation so un-cool.
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Old 06-23-2014, 08:39 PM   #20
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Sorry, but I would think the worst of someone with a telescope near a bathhouse too. You have heard of peeping Toms haven't you?
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Last night I had my telescope set up near the bathrooms (Third night in a row actually.) and was showing passers by the night sky. A grand time was being had by all, again, third night in a row.

Out of the blue a guy camping near the bath house about 100 feet away from us, at 10:00 on the dot bounded out of his camper, flashlight in hand demanding to know who we were and what we were doing.

I told him what we were doing, for the third night in a row, and invited him over to take a look.

All while his flashlight in our eyes is decidedly unwelcome.

I asked if we were disturbing him, if he was the host (He didn't answer, but he wasn't.) and he just grumbled something about it being unusual for people to hang out around a bath house. Never mind my camper was literally 100 feet away. He stomped back inside not to be heard from again.

And no, we weren't being loud, no music. Just pointing the telescope and describing what they were seeing although there was an enthusiastic "WOW!!" when I showed someone Saturn for the first time.

Self appointed watchdogs, gotta love em!
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Well I can honestly say that there were a total of about 175 people over the weekend that didn't think that. I keep track so I can report it to the Astroleague.
I am Siding with SKnight here - really a *telescope* and you are concerned being set up by a latrine (Probably the best view 0f the night sky given trees and so forth)

Guess what, even if it IS a terrestrial telescope (which it was not) it would see WHAT? Better to be back on site at 130 ft or so if you were a creeper looking for something.

But it was not, it was a astronomical scope and I have been invited over to see viewings at camps before as well. WONDERFUL. And do you have ANY IDEA how much these amateur astronomers spend on their gear that they freely share? A friend in a sister RV club has a 20 inch unit he takes to rallies cost him a cool $18 grand! Typical Sknight units can be $600-$3K.

Thanks SKnight - please bring your unit to Goshen - I will love the viewing (if the light pollution is not too bad
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