"Pillaging the Universe One Star at a Time"


The 2018 Bootleg Star Party dates are:

Bootleg Spring Star Party: June 7-10

Bootleg Fall Star Party: September 6-9    

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*** Due to the number of people doing imaging at the Bootleg Star Parties, Bootleg Management is indicating that Green Lasers will not be permitted starting one hour after sunset ***


CLICK HERE for a copy of the 2018 Bootleg Spring Star Party Registration Form

Pre-registration deadline is Saturday, May 26th!!!  So hurry and get your forms in the mail! 

All forms must be postmarked no later than May 26th to qualify for early registration.

Map and Directions here...

PDFs require free Adobe Reader 



Bootleg 2016 Pictures and videos

Bootleg 2015 Pictures

Bootleg 2014 Pictures

Bootleg 2013 Pictures

Bootleg 2012 Pictures

Bootleg 2011 Pictures

Bootleg 2010 Pictures

Bootleg 2008 Pictures

Bootleg 2007 Pictures

2008 Prairie Skies Star Party Pictures 

CAS Astrofest @ Camp Shaw

CAS Astrofest @ Vana's

Texas Star Party 2009

<<< PSSP home page

CAS Web Site 

SWAOG Web Site 

Jeff's Driveway Astronomy Page

Jeff's Binocular Picks

Free Sky Map from Skymaps.com

PDFs require free Adobe Reader 

Wisconsin Astronomy


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page updated 1/5/2018



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Upcoming Observing Highlights for January 2018   (from skymaps.com)
1 Mercury at greatest elongation west (23° from Sun, morning sky) at 20h UT. Mag. −0.3.
1 Moon at perigee (closest to Earth) at 21:54 UT (356,565 km; angular size 33.5'). Closest of 2018.
2 Full Moon at 2:24 UT.
3 Earth at Perihelion (closest to Sun) at 6h UT. The Sun-Earth distance is 0.983284 a.u. or 147.1 million kilometers.
• Sun at Aphelion and Perihelion (Anthony Ayiomamitis)
3 Moon near Beehive cluster M44 (morning sky) at 20h UT.
• Beehive Cluster (Wikipedia)
• M44: The Beehive Cluster (APOD)
3 Quadrantid Meteor Shower peaks at 22h UT. Active between December 28 and January 12. Produces up to 120 meteors per hour. Radiant is in northern Boφtes.
• Quadrantids (Wikipedia)
• The Quadrantids (Gary Kronk)
5 Moon near Regulus (morning sky) at 8h UT. Occultation visible from Alaska, northern Canada, Greenland and Iceland.
• Occultation of Regulus (IOTA)
8 Last Quarter Moon at 22:25 UT.
9 Venus at superior conjunction with the Sun at 6h UT. Passes into the evening sky (not visible).
11 Moon near Jupiter and Mars (60° from Sun, morning sky) at 10h UT. Mags. −1.9 and 1.4.
13 Mercury 0.6° S of Saturn (20° from Sun, morning sky) at 8h UT. Mags −0.3 and 0.5.
15 Moon at apogee (farthest from Earth) at 2h UT (distance 406,464 km; angular size 29.4').
17 New Moon at 2:17 UT. Start of lunation 1176.
• Lunation Number (Wikipedia)
24 First Quarter Moon at 22:20 UT.
27 Moon near Aldebaran (evening sky) at 9h UT. Occultation visible from NW Canada, Alaska, NE Asia.
• Occultation of Aldebaran (IOTA)
30 Moon at perigee (closest to Earth) at 10h UT (358,994 km; angular size 33.3').
31 Moon near Beehive cluster M44 (midnight sky) at 7h UT.
31 Total Eclipse of the Moon begins at 12:52 UT and ends at 14:08 UT. Mid-eclipse at 13:30 UT. Partial phases begin at 11:48 UT and end at 15:11 UT. The Moon will appear red-orange in color during totality (the color of Earth's sunsets). Visible from west North America, the Pacific, Australia, New Zealand, Asia, Russia and India.
• Lunar Eclipses: 2011 - 2030 (NASA)
• Total Lunar Eclipse of 2018 January 31 (PDF) (NASA)
31 Full Moon at 13:27 UT.
>>> All times Universal Time (UT).    USA Central Standard Time = UT-6 hours.  (DST = UT-5 hrs,)


Zodiacal Light is caused by sunlight reflected off meteoric dust in the plane of the solar system. Choose a clear, moonless night, about 1-2 hours after sunset, and look for a large triangular-shaped glow extending up from the horizon (along the ecliptic). The best months to view the Zodiacal Light is when the ecliptic is almost vertical at the horizon: March and April (evening) and October-November (morning); times reversed for the southern hemisphere.
• Zodiacal Light (Wikipedia)
• Astronomy Picture of the Day (APOD)
• Photographing the Zodiacal Light (Weatherscapes)