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Gaze at Stars at Barrington Beach

The Recreation Department and the Astronomical Society of Southern New England host a night of star-gazing tonight, Aug. 10, at Barrington Beach -- if the weather cooperates.

If the weather cooperates, you will be able to gaze at the summer stars at Barrington Beach tonight, Aug. 10.

The Barrington Recreation Department is teaming up with the Astronomical Society of Southern New England (ASSNE) for a night of family star-gazing at the beach. You can watch the stars from 7:30 pm to approximately 10 pm on what will be a moonless night – perfect for star-gazing.

Friday’s forecast is for the possibility of thundershowers, though. Clouds would hide the stars, and thunder and lightning would chase you from the beach. So stay tuned.

You will need to bring beach chairs, blankets, snacks and friends, said Katie Grove, the summer intern in charge of events.

“The ASSNE will be providing multiple telescopes for viewing the stars and George Huftalen of the ASSNE will be walking around, pointing out constellations, and assisting viewers,” Grove said.

Just before sunset at 7:52, Huftalen will invite you to watch for meteors and satellites and listen to music as he points out  ahost of constellations, such as Lyra, Scorpius, Sagittarius, Cygnus the Swan, Perseus, Cassiopeia, and asterisms such as The Big Dipper and the Summer Triangle.

Huftalen also will tell stories of the constellations and a pass of the International Space Station.

After the initial introductions, said John Taylor, recreation director, you will be invited in small groups to go to several telescopes set up on the edge of the beach to look at some deep sky objects.

Among the possible objects: Ring Nebula, aka M57, or the Andromeda Galaxy, aka M31, or the beautiful double star Alberio or the Wild Duck Cluster, aka M11, along with clusters M4, M15, M7, The Eagle Nebula M16, The Swan Nebula M17, The Dumbell Nebula, M27 and the planets Saturn, Mars and, perhaps, Neptune and or Uranus near the end of the program.

Now, let's hope the weather cooperates.

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