"Pillaging the Universe One Star at a Time"


2020 Bootleg Star Parties!!! 


2020 Bootleg Fall Star Party - September 17th-20th!

COVID-19 Update: We have received word from Green River that they will be open starting the weekend of May 29/30th.  The Bootleg Fall Star Party will go forward, but attendees must follow the Phase 4 guidelines in Illinois as found here:

Send in your registration forms, as early registration ends Saturday, September 12th!  (if the Star Party cannot be held as a group event, as was the case in the spring, then your registration fee will be refunded and you will just have to pay for your nightly camping fee)! 

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The Bootleg Star Party Registration Form is available HERE  (pre-registration deadline is September 12th)

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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 ***


Map and Directions here...

PDFs require free Adobe Reader 



Bootleg 2019 Pictures

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

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Wisconsin Astronomy


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page updated 8/5/2020



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Upcoming Observing Highlights for August 2020   (from skymaps.com)
2 Moon near Jupiter (evening sky) at 0h UT. Mag. −2.7.
Jupiter (Wikipedia)
2 Moon near Saturn (evening sky) at 14h UT. Mag. 0.2.
Saturn (Wikipedia)
3 Full Moon at 15:58 UT.
9 Moon near Mars (morning sky) at 9h UT. Mag. −1.3.
Mars (Wikipedia)
9 Moon at apogee (farthest from Earth) at 14h UT (distance 404,659 km; angular size 29.5').
10 Venus 4.4 S of M35 cluster (46 from Sun, morning sky) at 11h UT. Mag. −4.3.
11 Last Quarter Moon at 16:47 UT.
12 Perseid meteor shower peaks at 13h to 16h UT. Peak lasts about 12 hours. Active from July 17 to August 24. Produces swift, bright meteors (50-100 per hour) many with persistent trains. Best viewed after midnight. Moonlight interferes this year.
Perseids (Wikipedia)
2020 Meteor Shower Calendar (PDF) (IMO)
12 Moon near the Pleiades at 16h UT (morning sky).
The Pleiades (Wikipedia)
13 Venus at greatest elongation west (46 from Sun, morning sky) at 0h UT. Mag. −4.3.
13 Moon near Aldebaran at 10h UT (morning sky).
Aldebaran (Wikipedia)
15 Moon near Venus (morning sky) at 14h UT. Mag. −4.3.
Venus (Wikipedia)
16 Moon near Castor (morning sky) at 15h UT.
16 Moon near Pollux (morning sky) at 20h UT.
17 Mercury at superior conjunction with the Sun at 15h UT. The innermost planet passes into the evening sky.
17 Moon near Beehive cluster M44 (morning sky) at 19h UT.
Beehive Cluster (Wikipedia)
M44: The Beehive Cluster (APOD)
19 New Moon at 2:41 UT. Start of lunation 1208.
21 Moon at perigee (closest to Earth) at 10:58 UT (distance 363,513 km; angular size 32.9').
23 Moon near Spica (evening sky) at 2h UT.
Spica (Wikipedia)
25 First Quarter Moon at 17:58 UT.
26 Moon near Antares (evening sky) at 8h UT.
Antares (Wikipedia)
29 Moon near Jupiter (evening sky) at 2h UT. Mag. −2.6.
29 Moon near Saturn (evening sky) at 18h UT. Mag. 0.3.
>>> 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)