An observatory in the New York/New Jersey area?
September 16, 2008 7:42 AM   Subscribe

I need help finding an observatory in the New York/ New Jersey area that I can take my boyfriend for his birthday to view the stars for a good hour or more. Any suggestions?
posted by likeapen to Grab Bag (4 answers total) 2 users marked this as a favorite
Here's two I know of UCC Cranford and Rutgers.

You can't really see much at either of them due to light pollution.
posted by pokeedog at 8:36 AM on September 16, 2008

I suggest that you alter your search from an observatory to a 'star party'. Astronomy associations gather occasionally with their variously-sized scopes and point them at different points of light of note in the sky. You get to BYOwhatever, bundle up, and wander between setups. The few that I've been to have been joint ventures between the area University Astronomy department and the local Astronomers' Association. Here's the events listing for the AAA of New York, and on their links page it looks like they have some good leads for other orgs that get lost in the night sky.
posted by carsonb at 8:37 AM on September 16, 2008

I'm associated with an observatory a bit outside your area, probably,* but know a bit about the northern NYC metro "scene."

There are lots of great astronomical organizations in the NYC area and knowing more about what you're interested in will help in steering you to the right ones. So, can you elaborate on what you have in mind -- telescope-only viewing (honestly, that can be a bit dull sometimes,) telescope plus naked-eye, chillin' with BF on a blanket while a knowledgeable guide points interesting stuff out, etc., and also whether you are willing to do this as part of a public event or have the place to yourself.

One very impressive organization on the Jersey side of the Hudson is the Rockland Astronomy Club. So try contacting them, too.

*The Westport, CT Astronomical Society. We host free public nights every Wednesday and Thursday night from 8 to 10. Mefites, heck, anybody, welcome. Bring the family! Ample parking! Easy on/off! Clean restrooms! Weddings/Bar Mitzvahs!


posted by Opposite George at 9:58 AM on September 16, 2008

Its not quite what you've asked for, but have you considered The Hayden Planetarium? There's also a lot of nice restaurants in that area, I'd think that would be a fun birthday, FWIW.
posted by cestmoi15 at 10:50 AM on September 16, 2008

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