MABUHAY! Welcome to the Philippine Astronomical Society's official website.
The first astronomical organization in the Philippines.
A dynamic, harmonious, research/leisure-oriented, nonprofit, nonstock astronomical society that aims to propel astronomy education toward the achievement of scientific excellence among Filipinos. Gives free lectures, public viewings, astrocamps, out-of-town observations as public outreach programs in astronomy and astrophysics.
Newbies to astronomy are most welcome here, as are armchair stargazers and veteran skywatchers. PAS aims to promote astronomy to the Filipinos in a fun yet educational manner.
So come on in out of the cold, and bask in the warmth of your fellow skywatchers! Go ahead, take a seat, kick back, and let your hair and your guard down. Share your astronomical knowledge with the rest of your comrades, and glean more information from them in return. In this website, everyone learns from each other, and everyone is FREE to express their opinions! Because the night sky belongs to EVERYONE!
MABUHAY ANG ASTRONOMIYA SA PILIPINAS!
The Philippine Astronomical Society
PAS in a Nutshell
PAS is a "family" that plays and works together to promote an understanding and awareness of the heavens above. It binds and bonds friends and strangers alike for that common cause.
Free lectures. Free stargazings. Free astrocamps. Free astronomiya sa kalsada. Free out-of-town observations. A public outreach program in astronomy by service-oriented, dedicated members whose only reward is to hear the oooohs and aaaahs of kids, students, and the public.
The PAS Seal
The official seal of the Philippine Astronomical Society is inscribed in a circle within a larger circle, which is symbolic of the vast outer space that humanity has always been longing to explore and to understand, illustrating the concept of the quantum world within the universe.
The central figure in the seal is a reflecting telescope, symbolizing the continuous quest for scientific knowledge. In front of the focus are three stars, representing Luzon, Visayas, and Mindanao - expressing the vision of entrenching firmly the science of Astronomy in the Philippines.
At the bottom of the telescope is the moon, which symbolizes Man’s first step of its exploration. The top right of this is a spiral galaxy, representing the distant universe and the cosmos, which humans seek to explore.
The rope connecting the symbols depicts the unity of common interests, hopes, and desires bound together for the advancement of Astronomy and Astrophysics in the Philippines.
What They Say
Jiandra Alda - A Stargazing Adventure: Lyrids Episode
Visit her blog at: https://thingiemajingie.wordpress.com
Kirsten Jean - "Feeling refreshed at Big Handys. Thank you for the opportunity, Philippine Astronomical Society. Educational. Fun. Relaxing. Memorable. We'd hopefully see you again on your next event."
The Lyrid meteors are supposed to light up the sky on its April 22 peak, so seven buses of PASers and guests (350 total) motored to Big Handys Grounds at Tanay, Rizal for this astronomically momentous overnight event.
Headed by The PAS Board of Directors, Prez Leah Villalon, Observation Chair Kashogi Astapan, Board Emeritus Edmund Rosales, Events Committee Chair Hernan Dizon, and all the indispensable Event facilitators who set up six telescopes for group viewings and did the group lectures, the stargazing was another tremendous success.
Three days posted at Facebook and the reservations were already fully booked and overspilled to 450 participants, which is 150 more than total guests allowed at Big Handys. So the 150 guests over the limit were accommodated and instantly taken in with the May 6-7 Overnight Stargazing Event, again at Big Handys.
Due to this unprecedented clamor for event participation, the Philippine Astronomical Society had to come up with more stargazing events to give everyone interested a chance to see the night sky in the darkest area possible without the pollution of city lights.
The summer Milky Way becomes the glorious sight at this time. And where would one observe this but on a hilltop with an unobstructed view of the night sky at Big Handys?
Unfortunately, April 22 was not a perfect sky last night. Per Sir Edmund Rosales, it was a first time that a thick fog covered the area but with good effect to the Sun. It made the Sun look like a Full Moon! And the participants indeed thought that the sun was a full moon.
Please see some photos below. More photos can be viewed at the Photo Gallery. (Photos by PASer Abdur Rahman Alindao; Milky Way photo by PASer Adriel Lim)
Milky Way photo by PASer Adriel Lim.
Catch a falling star, sleep under a million stars, peek into the heavens through telescopes, listen to the astronomer-hobbyists as they tour you around the skies, bond with like minds and hearts under the mantle of the cold dark Christmas night.
DEPARTURE FOR BHG - 1:30 PM Dec 10 from Araneta Bus Center Terminal
RETURN TO CUBAO - 8AM Dec 11
a. 500p for PAS members
b. 800p for nonmembers
c. 1000p for nonmembers (includes one-year membership fee)
RESERVATION - To reserve your slots, please deposit the full amount to PAS BPI acct 3081111722, and email your deposit slip with your names in it to firstname.lastname@example.org.Online transfer is fine.
LIMITED TO 300 PARTICIPANTS MAXIMUM. ONLY THOSE WHO PAID THEIR FEES WILL HAVE CONFIRMED RESERVATIONS. First come, first served. Paid reservation fees are non-refundable but transferable; please inform us the names of your transferees.
TRANSPORTATION - by airconditioned tourist buses; no more jeeps as these had given us big problems in the past. FOR SECURITY REASONS, please note that coming on your own or by private vehicles is not allowed.
CONTACT: 09175638230, 09158692007; 09258451124; 09066324174.
FURTHER DETAILS TO COME WHEN EVENT NEARS.
RESERVATIONS - NOTE THAT PAID RESERVATIONS TAKE PRIORITY IN THE LISTING AND WILL CONFIRM THE BUS SLOTS.
GEMINID EVENT SYNOPSIS
BIGHANDYS GROUNDS – The area where the overnight stargazing and Geminid meteor observation will be held is a rolling hilly grassy terrain where it is pitch dark during the night. It's about 2-2 1/2 hrs travel from Manila. From the roadside where the buses will park, participants will take an easy 10-minute walk 30-degree uphill to the sprawling stargazing area.
WHAT TO BRING – Prepared dinner, snacks, breakfast, drinking water, tent (if you have one but not compulsory), mat or improvised mat, flashlight, sweater, blanket (it is cooold in this location!! – bundle up!!), OFF lotion, fully charged cell phone, powerbank, trash bags for your trash. No pets allowed.
The Event cost covers only your roundtrip bus fare, venue fee, and joining fee. Already prepared food, tents, and drinking water are on your own. Tents are good for shelter in case it rains and for sleeping if you want to during the night. (But why should you miss the event by just going there to sleep?) You can also bring mats or big plastic material to use as improvised mat. It is pitch-dark at the area, so bring your small flashlights covered with red cellophane so the red-filtered light won’t distract stargazers and ongoing astrophotography. It is best to fully charge your cell phones and/or have a powerbank in case your batteries run low. NOTE: THERE ARE NO CELL SIGNALS IN THE AREA!!
STORES – There are small sarisari stores at the road near buses’ parking. They sell chichirya, some food and water. Not sure what time they close for the night.
COMFORT ROOM – Yes, there is a comfort room in the camp grounds. There will be 300 participants so you may be in a queue to use this. Please maintain cleanliness of the comfort rooms by NOT throwing your tissue paper anywhere but in the big waste can provided outside
WHERE TO SET UP TENTS – Those who will bring their tents will set these up close to the fence and in the periphery of the Grounds. Please be careful not to set these up too close to the cliff-like portion of the grounds or away from the group on the other hilltop. The central space is for the stargazing, lectures, and astrophotography.
LIQUOR? – Liquor, beer, or any alcoholic beverages are prohibited to prevent any possible untoward incidents among participants. So are loud speakers and sound systems. Please give priority to the lectures of astronomer-hobbyists who will show you the skies and to the possible shouts after seeing a falling star (meteor).
EVENT ACTIVITIES (FLEXIBLE)
12-1:00pm - Assembly at the restaurants along General Roxas Avenue corner Times Square beside Araneta Bus Center terminal at Cubao. Suggest to buy your dinner and breakfast from any of these restaurants around General Roxas Avenue.
1-1:30pm - Boarding time. Please show your IDs to the bus marshal for checking against the List.
1:30pm - Leave Cubao for Big Handys
3:30-4:30pm - Approximate arrival at Big Handys; familiarization with area; set up tents.
4:30-6:30 pm – Dinner, buy souvenirs, Event orientation
7:30PM -5:30AM Dec 11 – Stargazing, meteor shower observation, lectures, astrophotography
5:30-6:00AM – Breakfast on your own
6:00-7:00AM – Planting of seedlings requested by BHG owner
7:00-7:30AM – Pack up and pick up all your trash; put them in your trash bag to throw away at dump site to be specified by BHG owner.
8:00AM – Leave for Cubao
PASers are not only enthusiasts in astronomy; but we also have the fine taste and educational thirst for the arts, culture, natural sciences, and history.
A tour of the National Museum was undertaken for the Philippine Astronomical Society last July 23. Our tour was guided by OJT Tourism students in both the Museum of the Filipino People and the Museum of Filipino Art where we viewed about 15 art galleries.
Crowds were in the Museum, but it was a very enjoyable and educational guided tour for us who made it. All those first-hand information we got from the exhibits re Philippine culture, art, and history were priceless treasure!
One gets to see all the original paintings and sculptures of Jose Rizal and national artists Juan Luna, Fernando Amorsolo, Jose Joya for example; the cultural artifacts from the Lumads, Bangsamoros; the archaeological recoveries from sunken galleon ships; our "baybayin" (the original writing alphabet); and many, many others. The longest prehistoric Stegodon tusk and the oldest blanket that's 400 years old but already tattered are also exhibited there ?
If you have been to the National Museum before, I suggest go there again to see all these new very impressive collection of exhibits. It's also permanently free now.
Thanks much to those who joined this tour especially the Junior Scientists Club of Immaculate Conception Parochial School headed by Edward Ceazar Santos. We had an after-tour dinner at a Korean restaurant in SM Manila although the JSC didn't join us anymore.
FROM JULIET BAREJA
"Sa sobrang tuwa ko sa mga stars and busy din, nakalimutan ko magpasalamat. Sobrang nagenjoy ako. It was my first time stargazing, first campaign, first travel alone (as in walang kilala), amazing po ang event. Sana more fun and more lectures about the stars. Unforgettable experience talaga. God bless po sa lahat ng PAS."
FROM KIMBERLY RAYMOND NEPOMUCENO MANUEL
This month of May is my first year as a PAS member. I joined this organization after an overnight stargazing event at Big Handy's Grounds last year.
I'm interested in Astronomy since childhood, though upon growing up my other interests occupied my time. Since joining PAS last year, somehow I find myself involved again in Astronomy, and I'm glad to realize that there's still a chance to learn more.
As a way of saying thank you for a wonderful year with PAS, I made a video of our recent stargazing event.
I hope you'll enjoy watching this. It's about "that magical feeling" when we looked at the stars.
YouTube link: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=i1n23D-8Dvk
(Credits after the end of video)
FROM MAY SERRANO
"May 07-08, 2016 PMWWEACDSANEOSABAAFTM (PAS Milky Way watching, Eta AquArid Meteor Counting, Deep-Sky and Naked-Eye Object Spotting, Astro-booth and Astro-facts Tutorial Marathon)
It’s true that you never forget your first. It was with PAS 2nd Deep-Sky Observation at BHG back in 2014 that I first saw the Milky Way smiling down on Big Handy’s Grounds. It felt as if everything went silent and I was introduced to an ancient frequency that spoke directly to my soul.
Since then, we’ve watched the Milky Way countless times. It has occupied my thoughts, entered my dreams, and shaped them. It is my soul food. I can only express with tears the happiness I felt last weekend, watching 300 people watching the Milky Way, majority of them for the first time. Listening to the oohs and aahs during the lectures, hearing the excited yelps as meteors painted the sky green gold, and again the Milky Way rose and took our collective breaths away. From rise to set, even with a few clouds in between, she smiled on us. It was a soul food buffet!
The stars have given me strong faith that those who wonder at them, those that pursue knowledge about them, those that open other peoples’ eyes to them will be blessed with the potential to be inspired. That potential energy, times 300, condensed in one night is what goosebumps are made of. I look forward to the many dreams that will come true! I look forward to knowing the dark, night sky will have more eyes and hearts awed by it! Exciting times!
I often hear people say “make a wish” every time they see the first star or a shooting star. We saw a lot, so here come the wishes:
To those who tuned in and listened to the music of the stars, may the Milky Way open your minds to the vastness of our universe and your role in it. May the constellations help you find your bearings when you are lost. May the many long-tailed, green-gold meteors streak across your memories and your dreams. May the memory of Jupiter a cutely tilted Saturn remind you to always look closely before you label things, and may the deep sky objects hidden in the dark patches of sky comfort you when it seems there isn’t a light of hope to be found. If you are gifted in math and science, I hope this experience will inspire you to pursue the study and practice of astronomy. The Philippines has lagged behind in this field but I believe the tide is changing. May you be a part of that upward swing!
To the tireless “astrobooth” operators, photolecturers and photographers, a heartfelt THANK YOU! It’s a special kind of generosity to give your time, effort, skill, patience and sleep so we can all have our own Milky Way mementos. In this era of Facebook sharing, you now play an incredible role in spreading the astronomy word. It is the images that you selflessly produce that will open the door to other people’s curiosity about the magnificent night sky wonders. You are the PR to the biggest stars. Again, Thank you! May you efforts be rewarded and your skills recognized!
To those who had the opportunity to have their photos taken, when you share your pictures, may you also take the effort to share the knowledge too. The PAS Milky Way experience is so information filled and deeply personal, so please share your experience as well. May you inspire others to appreciate the night sky!
To those who dig the off-grid, astro-koboy, nature-dependent vibe of Big Handy’s Grounds, our warmest hugs! As much as BHG is a labor of love founded on a crazy happy dream, the good wishes you give us and the appreciation you express help convert the challenges we encounter into pleasant memories along our God given mission/passion road. I admit, it is a weird way of life we have chosen so it’s always refreshing to know that we have co-weirdos out there.
To all of us who have felt the touch of starlight, may we always keep in tune with the wise and ancient voices that have awed us. May we keep each other inspired to shine regardless of whether anyone is watching or not. May the factionalism, politicking and petty competition over a slice of the sky pie we Earthlings are so prone to fade when we ponder or study the vastness of our universe.
To the lecturers with titanium voice boxes, the knowledge you share and keeping that knowledge fresh is a gift! May your future be filled with the grateful hugs of those you inspired. It was through the PAS lectures we were lucky enough to attend that Big E and I found the direction for our mission. Grateful hugs!
Our dearest for last: A bellowing hip hip hooray to all PAS volunteers. You all deserve a PHD in multitasking! Majority of you took on double, even triple duties so extra hooray! The work that goes on behind such events requires a generosity of spirit that I can only label as PASsion fueled. It’s no easy task to make sure that 300 people get to watch the stars hitch-free, but also, that scientific knowledge is imparted and curiosity is piqued. I can imagine the hard work, the sleepless nights, the stress headaches and the physical toll that went into seeing this event through. Our deepest and sincerest THANK YOU to you all! May PAS continue to shine through the years! May your advocacy and reach expand as our universe does! May the PAS torch always have well-abled, highly skilled, goodhearted individuals who are eager to receive it and carry it further!
On a deeply personal note, I’ll go all Whitney Houston and say I will always love you (ooooo). The 300 strong birthday serenade made Big E blush and he’s adorable when he blushes Also, when Big E and I got married, it was bittersweet because my Dad, the original Big Handy, had already passed and I didn’t have him to walk me down the aisle. We kept our wedding tiny and when you all yelled “Kiss! Kiss!”, and we did, it felt like a big wedding where Big Handy was present. Our love was renewed. Thank you!
In 2013, we sent out our “Bahala na si Batman” signal to all astronomy groups to come see the view from BHG. PAS (via Von) was our first responder. The PAS Deep Sky Marathon in March 2013 was our first astrocamp experience. It was with PAS that we first saw the Milky Way, with PAS members that we had our first Milky Way picture and it is through PAS that we met the people who are now so near and dear to us, that I know in my heart, we are a soul family. That’s why we will never, EVER, E V E R, forget our first!"
Photos by Rege Quinto (Milky Way photo); group photo by Kashogi Astapan; panoramic tent view by May Serrano. More photos at Photo Gallery May 7-8 Album
Yep! Name it, we did it during our Ilocos tour trip last April 21-24.
For 3 days and 2 nights we visited all the tourist/historical/cultural sites of Ilocos. We bonded, we swam, we sang, we ate, we climbed, we stargazed, we sandboarded, we drove through sand dunes, we shrieked through it all, we visited sites even at night. What an unforgettable, fully loaded trip with memories that last a lifetime.
Our group with 22 participants visited the Hidden Garden, Vigan Heritage Village, Vigan Cathedral, Baluarte ni Chavit, Burnayan Pottery, Crisologo Museum, Bantay Bell Tower at Vigan, Ilocos Sur; the Marcos Mausoleum, PaoayChurch, Herencia Restaurant, Malacanang of the North, Sand Dunes at Batac; the Sinking Belltower, Ilocos Norte Capitol, St Williams Cathedral, Bangui Windmills, Kapurpurawan Rock Formation at Laoag; Saud Beach, Gapuz Farm, Bantay Abot Cave, Blue Lagoon Beach, Patapat Viaduct, Paraiso ni Anton, Santa Bridge, Cape Bojeador, Welcome Arch at Pagudpud.
Below are some photos of the event. Please check the Ilocos Album at the Photo Gallery Page for other trip pictures.
The Philippine Astronomical Society has just created a group for the adventurous and outdoor enthusiasts - the PAS OUTDOOR ASTRONOMY GROUP!
In case you are not aware of it, many of our PAS members are now into outdoor adventure activities with stargazing. They usually go mountain-climbing, swimming, beach picnicking, trekking and do stargazing on the beach, on minor mountain peaks, on islands, etc.
This started when PAS went to Puerto Galera in April 2015 where we bonded and found similar interests in said activities.
For latest trips, Observation Chair Reginald Quinto has been the one spearheading/organizing these. Rege Quinto will similarly head this Observation Committee Subgroup, and future events of this nature will be posted here at our Facebook page and at our website for interested members and guests.
1. Joiners, PAS members or not, must be physically and medically fit and preferably between 18 and 75 years old.
2. PAS will not be responsible for any untoward incident that may happen during these activities.
3. A PAS disclaimer must be signed by all joining the trips and with parental consent for those who are below 18 years old.
4. Minors must be accompanied by parents or guardians.
5. Joiners will take care of their respective tents, sleeping mats, food provisions, share in transpo needs, etc.
6. Non-PAS members will only donate a PAS joiners fee of 50p, but trips are free to PASers.
Photos by Reginald Quinto
EARTH HOUR 2016 - Tonight at 8:30pm-9:30pm, PLEASE participate in the Earth Hour 2016 global movement by turning off your house lights for one hour! If you are in Manila, come to the Quezon City Circle for the main switch-off event.
Earth Hour started in Sydney, Australia as a single city event but has now become worldwide participated in by 172 countries. "The switching off of lights at exactly 8:30 pm until 9:30 pm tonight marks the 10th year of the Earth Hour, initiated by the World Wide Fund for Nature (WWF) to deliver a simple, yet powerful message on the need for decisive climate change solutions."
Here in the Philippines, the main switch-off event will be held.n Quezon City Circle, and the program will start at 7pm and ends at 10pm.
“Thousands are expected to come and celebrate climate solutions with WWF-Philippines Ambassadors Marc Nelson, Rovilson Fernandez, Mikee Cojuangco-Jaworski, plus other personalities and acoustic performers,” she said.
This year’s Earth Hour will be highlighted by bicycles, electric vehicles, renewable energy technologies and other climate change solutions, according to Ibay. She said that over 500 bikers are expected to gather at the venue before the switch-off.
A light emitting diode (LED) map of the Philippines will also be lit by volunteers pedaling on 10 stationary bamboo bikes attached to energy generators, which converts “pedal power” to electricity.
“Stationary bikes will partially power this year’s event to show that united, Pinoys can light up this country with their collective energy. Together, anything is possible,” the Earth Hour official shared.
All participants will have the a chance to pedal these bikes, said Ibay. Electric vehicles such as e-jeeps and e-trikes will also be displayed during the event “to showcase low-carbon alternatives which all Pinoys can embrace,” adds Ibay. Celebrations will be featured on WWF-Philippines’ social media platforms, she said.
A perfect sunny weather indeed for the March 9 partial solar eclipse observation here in the Philippines!
The partial phase began at 7:51am and ended at 10:20am. Watched by almost everyone nationwide and having been advised through TV and the social media on how to observe the solar eclipse safely with or without the telescope, the March 9, 2016 solar eclipse, though partial, was a very much talked of and much awaited/prepared for event throughout the country.
The Philippine Astronomical Society observed the event at the roof deck of the Manila Observatory at the Ateneo de Manila University, Loyola Heights, Quezon City - with Edmund Rosales, Ronald Tanco, Hernan Dizon, Marlon Monzon, Margie Parinas, Kimberly Raymond Nepomuceno Manuel, Carlo Andrion, Rachel Joaquin, Genie Lorenzo in the Observation Team among other guests.
As in past important sky phenomena where PAS conducts public observation, ABS-CBN and Channel 5 were the immediate bonding media to instantly cover the event and to give it the nationwide media boost and news coverage.
Below are some photos taken by Marlon Monzon at the Manila Observatory at 7:52am and thereafter [(projected into a blue screen (1,2)]. (Other photos can be seen below and at the March 9 Partial Solar Eclipse Photo Album at Photo Gallery Page.)
Sequential partial eclipse photos below were taken by PASer Kimberly Nepomuceno from the Manila Observatory.
A complete photo-documentation of the total solar eclipse (below) was done by PASer Lordnico Mendoza who went to Sulawesi, Indonesia on official trip as weather forecaster of The Philippine Atmospheric, Geophysical and Astronomical Services.
Below are partial eclipse photos from Azrael Coladilla, taken in the Philippines.
The Philippine Astronomical Society engages in a whole-year continuing education program where lecturers are invited to schools, science clubs' events and to conduct stargazing activities nationwide.
After the hectic very successful National Astronomy Week celebration last February 13-20 (see some photos below), PAS Board Chairman Engr. Camilo Dacanay continued the PAS outreach education with a lecture at Balanga, Bataan Department of Tourism and at UP Manila where the Physiklaban event (a competition of the hundred different Physics Societies nationwide). Slated for further lecture activities are at Zamboanga City and Tinglayan in Benguet. The PAS Observation Team also had their share of conducting a stargazing activity at St. Marys Academy at Pasay.
The Observation team along with invited guests also observed the partial solar eclipse at Manila Observatory last March 9. With them were media crew from ABS-CBN and TV 5.
Following are some photos to show the various CEOP activities.
OPENING DAY, FEBRUARY 13. DE LA SALLE UNIVERSITY AT TAFT
FEBRUARY 17, DE LA SALLE UNIVERSITY
FEBRUARY 20, CLOSING DAY, MIRIAM COLLEGE HIGH SCHOOL
Please see more photos at the Photo Gallery Page NAW 2016 Albums.
The Philippine Astronomical Society will celebrate the 23th National Astronomy Week on February 13-20 2016, with the collaboration of De La Salle University Physics Society, Miriam College High School Physics Society, and the Manila Observatory.
Following are the activities during the celebration:
February 13, 2016 (Saturday - 4th Floor, St. Joseph Building, De La Salle University, Taft
7:00am-12:00noon - Poster-making and photo-essay contest (high school and elementary
level, Astro Quiz (high school level)
12:00noon-1:00pm - Lunch break
1:00pm-5:00pm - Awarding of prizes and certificates
February 17, 2016 (Wednesday) – 4th Floor, Yuchengco Hall, De La Salle University, Taft
1:30pm-2:00pm - “History of PAS” by Miss Leah Villalon
2:00pm-3:00pm - “Life in the Universe As We Know It”
by Prof. Emmanuel Rodolfo (PhD, DLSU)
3:00pm-4:00pm - “Anatomy of Geologic Activities and Climate Change” by Engr. Camilo G. Dacanay (PAS Board Chairman)
4:00pm-4:30pm - Open Forum
4:30pm-5:00pm - Group picture
February 20, 2016 (Saturday) – LMC Viewing Rooms 1/2, Miriam College High School, Katipunan Ave., Quezon City
1:00pm-3:00pm - Amateur Telescope-Making Workshop by Genie Lorenz, Manila Observatory
3:00pm-4:00pm - "Philippine Ethnoastronomy: The Analysis of Historical Record and Literary Pieces - During The The Pre-Colonial Philippines” by Rizchel Masong (MS Physics, DLSU)
4:00pm-5:00pm - "Sun-Earth Researches Using Climate Models”, by John Lequiron (MS Meteorology,
5:00pm-5:30pm - Group photo
THE PHILIPPINE ASTRONOMICAL SOCIETY IS DEEPLY GRATEFUL TO THE FOLLOWING DONORS:
1. Leah Villalon, Pasig City
2. Sharon Mary Villanueva, Makati
3. Mitchell Edward Feldman, Brooklyn, New York
4. Tuguegarao City Government through Mayor Jefferson Soriano
5. Teresita Villanueva, Paranaque City
6. Anthony Greg Arugay, Tuguegarao City
7. Rosalind Carag, Tuguegarao City
8. Pablo Pacquing, Isabela
9. Catherine Bello, Quezon City
10. Atty. Arnold Oclarit, General Santos City
11. Maria Sobina Yu
12. Engr. Dario Arugay, California, USA
THANK YOU, VERY VERY MUCH!!!
As part of the Continuing Education Program of the Philippine Astronomical Society, a meeting was held at De La Salle University at Taft, Manila for free lectures, and this was attended by Metro Manila science elementary teachers, science clubs, and astronomy enthusiasts. The lecturers for this meeting were Pecier Decierdo, Leo Manosca, and Engr. Camilo Dacanay who are all PAS Board Members. Following are some pictures taken during the meeting.
Who will ever forget December 12-13 Geminid Meteor Shower Observation and Stargazing at Big Handys Grounds, Cuyambay, Tanay, Rizal? Certainly no one will.
Despite the rigorous preparation, the seemingly endless texts/calls from participants, the scramble for final boarding the two tourist buses and three jeepneys, and the scare of the news re the typhoon that had entered the Philippine Area of Responsibility, everything went well. Absolutely everything! Including the great skies despite the upcoming typhoon, the bevy of superb PAS lecturers, the souvenirs, the surprise and unexpected Ernie/May Serrano's ageless monumental legacy and honor to the Philippine Astronomical Society. This plus the similarly unexpected sumptuous breakfast treat to the almost 200 participants made this Event an experience that no one will ever forget in their lifetime.
Thank you very much to all the participants and to all PASers who gave their time and shared their expertise with everyone. Endless thanks to you, Ernie and May Serrano. PAS is really at a loss for words for everything and for the big success of the Event!
Here are comments from some participants:
"Amazing people, superb location and clear skies for the Geminids Meteor Shower. Thank you Philippine Astronomical Society and Big Handy's! The experience was unforgettable."
"I can listen to you guys all night talk about the sky." Rafi Victoria Sartin
"Just sharing some of my fave shots during the stargazing session last weekend. Sayang wala akong nakunan na geminids but I saw at least 20 and I was hoping to see Catalina kaso umalan naman heheh. Nevertheless, to be in that place and to experience that moment was a reward in itself. Cant wait for the next session with PAS... mga anak ko gusto agad bumalik sa Big Handys. Again thank you organizers for the knowledge and the experience. It was really a night to remember." Joane Escober
"Sir Reginald, thank you very much po! Ang dami kong natutunan, sobra! Ang saya saya." Maria Kristina Cuenca.
"We are exhausted but energized, minds are blank but with so much we want to express. Until I finish my writeup for the wonderful PAS Geminids Observation, I'd like to simply say, We love PAS."
"A once-in-a-lifetime experience that I will always treasure. A hurray!!! to the organizing team who made the activity a success. Thank you my PAS family for enlivening my passion in appreciating the beauty of the sky. Thank you BigHandy'sGrounds Serrano for another milestone in giving us a better place for learning and camaraderie." Love Nufable
"Thank you Big Handy's. I found home." Ram Red
"Capturing every single moment possible, no internet, No signal, just food and laughing with friends, met new friends. Lying down at the grass, with very cold weather under the thousand of stars, and making a wish to all meteors seen. haha. "
"Kudos to Philippine Astronomical Society for this, we learned a lot from all your lectures. I've seen the patience and passion. And thank you to my friends who appreciates and celebrates my passion with me."
"This is indeed a great experience Lord! Hindi man ako nakapagpicture sa gabi Lord but this is more than enough for post bday gift. How I've seen your works, really praise and worship You more! You're amazing!! its also a great experience with You last night."
"Stargazing for the second time with the same amazing place. Hay." �� Karen Anne Santiago
"Another superb experience. I counted 42 meteors! The lectures were great, the night sky was great, I saw milky way, AMAZING. And... yes, everything went well! By the way, those are Sierra Madre mountains!"
"From Vega to Altair, to the Andromeda Galaxy, to Algol, to Betelgeuse and Rigel, to Regor and Naos, to Aludra and Sirius, to Procyon, to the Beehive Cluster, to the Perseus Arm, to Jupiter, last weekend was a blast to have seen the night sky with old and new friends."
"To all the new friends and stargazers, we hope to see you all again under the clear night skies! Next time we hunt for the elusive Catalina!" Carlo Andrion
"Take time to learn, appreciate and acknowledge God's beautiful creation." Mary Grace Gonzales
"Can't help but to change my profile pic, haha! papayat pa din naman ako. hahaha but grabe Lord, whatta great experience! will bring this until the end of time! Thank you Lord!"
"Soo cold! doubledouble na pero nanginig pa din ako!" Diana Bana
"Returned to Big Handy's Grounds with the Philippine Astronomical Society, Inc. to observe the Geminids Meteor Shower which when at its peak I saw in total more than 30 Meteors 2 of which created Green Fireballs in the sky!!.. Also with the large telescopes brought in by Sir Ronald Tanco I was able to properly use one and got to identify deep sky objects like the Andromeda Galaxy, Beehive Cluster, Little Dumbbell Nebula, Markarian's Chain, Crab Nebula, Omicron Velorum Cluster, Orion Nebula, The Seven Sisters, and The starfish Cluster.. Met knew people who share the same passion and love for stargazing, learned new information from people who shared their knowledge with regards to stargazing.. Finally, a surprise by the owners of Big Handy's to the members of the Philippine Astronomical Society which is a sculpture dedicated to the organization where we wrote our names in one of the stones :D.. Thank you PAS for conducting this event!! Victoria Evarretta Hernan M. Dizon Reginald Quinto" Carlo de la Pena
I would like to thank everybody who attended and helped make this event not only possible but a success. After all the preparation and the snafus, we are left with a beautiful memory of the night sky under the Geminids Meteor Shower. From the Andromeda Galaxy, to Algol, to Betelgeuse and Rigel, to Regor and Naos, to Aludra and Sirius, to the Beehive Cluster, to Jupiter, I hope I have imparted to you something to wonder about the Universe.
To all the new friends and stargazers, we hope to see you all again under the clear night skies! Reginald Quinto
AND FROM THE GREATEST OF THEM ALL - MAY SERRANO
You know those cartoons where someone’s down and has rain cloud over his head following him around? At the last minute, that’s what the PAS GSMO looked like, literally.
Organizational snafus, illness, fatigue, car troubles, nighttime navigation problems, plain old bad luck and to top it off clouds so thick and heavy we were practically inhaling water, plagued us. Yet we pushed through, smiling, excited, hoping, looking forward to looking up. Had I been an outside observer, it would have been reasonable to ask "Why are you all going through all this trouble just to look at stars??!" I know the answer would be "Because it’s my passion."
Passion is a beautiful, wonderful, powerful, infectious thing-and passion for the stars… well, that’s just so crazy, it’s poetic.
It’s that passion that makes an artist forge his own metal to make a Milky Way art piece, that passion that makes someone on crutches climb a rocky road and a steep hill and that passion that makes his already tired companion carry all his gear for him. The very same passion that makes someone leave her comfortable hometown to take on the thankless, draining task of making sure everybody’s trip goes well is the same one that makes someone who lost their slot angry. It makes a lolo sit out in the cold so his grandkid can figure out his scope. It powers people to lug heavy equipment up rough terrain so others get a chance to have a close up of the celestial wonders. It’s what makes a busy man with deadlines to meet build a monument in what little spare time he has. It’s what calls someone to run up and down the hill countless times to coordinate. Its what inspires a lecturer to speak tirelessly through night and what inspires the rest of us to listen, ask and absorb. It that passion that calls us to sit on the hard ground in the cold to talk about, talk under and listen to others talk about the stars. The wonderful thing is we each have our own pre PGMSO horror stories to tell, yet we were all there, together, eyes to the skies.
When 170+ people with this shared passion come together, the energy is palpable. It can even keep the flu virus at bay. The sky not only opened up, it put on a show. Deep sky objects came alive through the scopes.
The winter Milky Way rose and posed. We got to witness the constellations’ nightly east to west parade. All this as meteors streaked across the sky to our delight. Gorgeous images were captured both by cameras and our hearts. Friendships were built and forged, camaraderie filled the air, information filled our brains, the grounds vibrated joy under the many happy footsteps and if I may insert something super personal, I had the heart warming opportunity to watch the stars with my brother. Life and years have led us on separate paths but I was transported back to my childhood when I was his little tag-along. (thanks Kuya Pidge!).
This passion we share has many branches. There are the naked eye enthusiasts, the deep sky watchers, the image capturers, the information sharers, the artists and I just learned that night about the correlation of philosospy and astronomy, but the one constant is the stars.
Yes, we missed Catalina, yes we got dawn showers but that just fuels us towards the next time.
Like I said earlier, passion is a beautiful, wonderful, powerful, infectious thing..and you can’t spell passion without PAS.
Arp 273 is a pair of interacting spiral galaxies in the constellation Andromeda. Though less brilliant or prominent than M31 the Great Andromeda Galaxy, Arp 273 is none the less a striking object in that constellation. Both galaxies of the galaxy pair UGC 1810 and UGC 1813 exhibit strong red color indicative of active star- forming regions.
rp 295 is one of the most spectacular examples of stellar bridges between galaxies. The interacting galaxy pair, MGC-1-60-22 and MGC-1-60-21, both have a similar magnitude of 14.5 and are located in the constellation Aquarius. The two galaxies are expected to eventually merge in the future.
WHAT - PAS Regular Monthly Meeting
WHEN - October 17, 2015; 2-5 pm
WHERE - Miriam College High School
Katipunan Ave, QC
LMC Viewing Rooms 1 and 2
DIRECTIONS: Please enter Miriam College campus through Gate 2, right across Savemore and footbridge.
Kindly contact Events Chair Hernan Dizon at 09184638951 on or before October 9 to register. Registration is free. Open to PASers and guests.
It was a rainy afternoon last June 27 but still more than 50 persons attended the PAS monthly meeting at the Quezon City Science Interactive Building in Bago Bantay, Quezon City. Participants learned new things from the free lecture given by our BOD Chairman Milo Dacanay.
How can I forget these? The experience, the place, the people, the pets, the Milky Way above our heads, the big breakfast, the bonding - ooooh la la! Simply unforgettable!
"Dearest PAS family and Co May 1617 co Milkywayers, (FROM ERNIE AND MAY SERRANO)
From the soles of my feet to the brims of my tear ducts, THANK YOU for blessing our grounds with your presence, you Heart Warming kindnesses, your generosity of knowledge, your incredible "back stories", your artful skills, your smiles, your music and your happies! Thank you for giving Big Handy's such a wonderful purpose! The image of a galaxy of tents and campers under the our awesome home galaxy is forever etched in my memory. When I close my eyes, I see all of you (and sometimes Omega Centauri)
"Just as mythology tells us that the gods placed their favorite heroes and heroines in the heavens so they can gaze upon them and inspire all who see them, I believe that the God that oversees Big H placed you forever in our hearts for the very same reason. We are inspired by you!
My Dad (the human Big Handy his angel bday is today) used to sing this song all the time,
now my soul sings it to you:
may the good Lord bless and keep you, whether near or far away.
may you find that long awaited Golden day today.
may your troubles all be small ones, and your fortunes 10 times 10
may the good Lord bless and keep you till we meet again.
may you walk with sunlight shining with a bluebird in every tree
may there be a silver lining behind every cloud you see.
Fill your dreams with sweet tomorrows, never mind what might have been
May the good Lord bless and keep you till we meet again!
Our most heartfelt and thankful hugs,
Ernie, May, Ella, Satchmo, Ox, Yagi and Messi"
FROM MASK GRANT
"Wahh I'm still trying to collect my thoughts. Had the most awesome stargazing and camping experience with Philippine Astronomical Society peeps. Soo much fun with wonderful and amazing people!! Lying down in the night sky under lots and lots of stars and the Milky Way beside Scorpio (my favorite constellation) was one of the best moments of my life! plus we saw 2 galaxies at the same time!!! Milky Way + Andromeda! A passion for learning more about astronomy has been sparked inside of me thanks to PAS. I couldn't help but get fangirl/fanboy feels when sir Reginald was discussing about stars and galaxies. ang galing!!! sir reg you're amazing!! Big Handy's has become my happy place. Everytime I go there with friends to see Big M, Big E, and all the doges (Ella, Satchmo, Ox, Yagi, and new friend Messi) I end up being filled with hope, happiness, and positivity. When I'm there I feel like things are going to be okay. Thank you for everything BigHandy'sGrounds Serrano, thank you Bruno Exiomo for introducing me to PAS and for being a wonderful friend." Mask Grant