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 Paper Plate Education
"Serving the Universe on a Paper Plate"

AstroCamp:  Astronomy Camp for Kids

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Astrocamp is a stargazing adventure where boys and girls experience firsthand the joys of observing the night sky.  From the moment they arrive, AstroCampers handle telescope on the shores of Corey Lake and learn constellations in a portable planetarium.  They then use their new skills--after making s'mores  by the campfire--to identify celestial features and to discover deep sky objects over four consecutive nights.   

Observed highlights typically include the planets, the crescent moon, lots of Messier objects (nebulae, star clusters, and galaxies), satellites, and more.  Several kids who stay up late measure the local sky glow with Sky Quality Meters (SQMs) in support of the Night Vision project.  

By day, AstroCampers witness solar activity safely both through white light filters and through a hydrogen-alpha telescope.  They combine their views of the sun on paper plates, recording emerging sunspots and outlying prominences.  Other daytime activities included making and using Star Wheels, making a paper sundial, identifying stars and constellations on a celestial scavenger hunt, using computers with astronomy software, and building and launching water rockets.  This is one fun astronomy camp--not school--for kids!

More images of this astronomy camp for kids are at:  
Astrocamp 2011 AstroCamp 2010 AstroCamp 2009  AstroCamp 2008 AstroCamp 2007     AstroCamp 2006     AstroCamp 2005     AstroCamp 2004    AstroCamp 2003

For reservations for the next AstroCamp, contact YMCA Camp Eberhart in Three Rivers, Michigan, at http://campeb.org; or at 269-244-5125 or 888-YCAMPEB.    

        See AstroCamp 2009--"Shoulders of Giants" at http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=9-wcKyuIbkY or click below.  Video shows excerpts from some past AstroCamp stargazing and experiences.                              AstroCamp is featured on WNIT PBS television show Outdoor Elements (Episode #1003, Segment #1).  Note that former  AstroCamp attendee and part-time AstroCamp counselor Sarah is the guest of Episode #2.  Click picture below or see http://www.wnit.org/outdoorelements/1000/1003/1003.html

For observing conditions at the AstroCamp site, visit the Yarger Observatory Clear Sky Clock at

DSC01542.JPG (40072 bytes)Tables in the Light Pollution Handbook (p. 71) suggest the Yarger Observatory is an ALCoR 1 facility and an E2 district.


Links related to AstroCamp:

Note: This AstroCamp webpage is provided as a courtesy by a private party and does not necessarily reflect the opinions or policies of YMCA Camp Eberhart.

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Copyright 2012 Chuck Bueter.  All rights reserved.