The Astronomy Club is here!!!

Hello everyone.  We did it.  The Aroostook County Astronomy Club is back and the UMPI Astronomy Club has been created.

The original Aroostook County Astronomy Club was formed on July 5, 2005.  It was in existence for six years.  On September 10, 2016, the ACAC was reconstituted when it met in room 118 of the UMPI Campus Center. Just like in 2005, the weather was uncooperative and we were not able to go outside to observe, but we were able to meet and go over how to use sky charts.

The new club actually has two components: a community club and an UMPI student club.  The official names of the club are the UMPI Astronomy Club/The Aroostook County Astronomy Club.  The reason for this name and the current structure is to permit a student club on the campus and a community club in and around Presque Isle.

Members and those who wish to join us during our open meetings are invited to come to future programs and educational sessions to learn about the night sky and various celestial objects.  We will also have telescopes available to observe various heavenly objects.  Some of the future planned programs include a Pluto/New Horizons Program, a Trip to the Planets and the Skies over Aroostook County.

I would like to invite everyone to join our Facebook Page–Aroostook County Astronomy Club.  This page provides information on upcoming club activities, events occurring in the night time sky and interesting astronomy stories from various sources.

Our next Astronomy Club meeting will occur on Friday, Oct. 21, beginning at 5:30 p.m.  The meeting will begin in the UMPI Campus Center, room 118.  At 6 p.m. we will move the meeting to the soccer field near the wind turbine to observe the night sky (weather permitting).  We will have telescopes available and will attempt to view Venus, Mars, Saturn and Uranus. We may also attempt to look at several deep space objects visible at this time. We also plan on looking at the International Space Station as it passes to the south of our observing area at 6:27 p.m.

Finally, we hope to watch several Orionid meteors streak across the sky.  We encourage you to bring a lounge chair and a blanket so that you will be able to view the meteor shower more comfortably

I hope to see you on Oct. 21.  It will be fun to fill the field with people watching the meteor shower.




The International Space Station is visible as follows:

Evenings–Until Oct. 21.

Mornings–From Oct. 31 to Nov. 21.


For the times of other events, go to  You will need to register at this site and load your location to be able to get exact times.  The University of Maine at Presque Isle is located at 68d00m7.8s west longitude and 46d40m45.6s north latitude.

To get a free sky chart go to


Sun and Planet Visibility


06:57 Sunrise.

17:35 Sunset.

06:30–06:42 Mercury.

17:36–18:54 Venus.

18:06–21:48 Mars.

05:18–06:42 Jupiter.

18:06–19:42 Saturn.



07:14 Sunrise.

17:15 Sunset.

Not visible Mercury.

17:18–18:54 Venus.

17:4 –21:48 Mars.

04:48–07:00 Jupiter.

17:48–19:00 Saturn.


10/10 19:00 Draconid Meteor Shower–5.8 Meteors/hour.

10/11 06:03 Mercury 0.8 degrees from Jupiter.

10/15 Uranus in Opposition–Closest to the Earth–1.7 billion miles away/2.6 billion km away.

10/16 00:23 Full Moon.

10/16 19:40 Moon at Perigee–Closest to the Earth–222,367 miles or 357,865 km.

10/17 18:42 ISS passes 0.7 degrees from Arcturus (Alpha Bootes).

10/19 02:05 Moon eclipses Aldebaran (Alpha Taurus).

10/19 02:57 Moon’s eclipse of Aldebaran (Alpha Taurus) ends.

10/19 05:00 Orionid Meteor Shower–5.8 Meteors/hour.

10/19 18:37 ISS passes 0.14 degrees from Mars.

10/20 05:00 Orionid Meteor Shower–8.2 Meteors/hour.

10/21 05:00 Orionid Meteor Shower–10.3 Meteors/hour.

10/21 15:00 Orionid Meteor Shower Maximum–10.4 Meteors/hour.

10/22 05:00 Orionid Meteor Shower–10.2 Meteors/hour.

10/22 15:13 Last Quarter Moon.

10/23 05:00 Orionid Meteor Shower–8.0 Meteors/hour.

10/24 05:00 Orionid Meteor Shower – 5.6 Meteors/hour

10/27 12:18 Mercury in Superior Conjunction–Other side of the Sun.

10/28 06:54 Moon 1.28 degrees from Jupiter.

10/29 09:11 Mars at Perihelion–Closest to the Sun.

10/29 20:45 Venus 3.0 degrees from Saturn.

10/30 13:38 New Moon.

10/31 15:44 Moon at Apogee–Farthest from the Earth–252,691 miles or 406,667 km.

11/02 17:48 Moon 2.91 degrees from Saturn.

11/02 18:06 Moon 6.85 degrees from Venus.

11/06 05:02 ISS 0.41 degrees from Aldebaran (Alpha Taurus).

11/06 16:42 Moon 6.8 degrees from Mars.

11/07 14:51 First Quarter Moon.

11/14 06:27 Moon at Perigee–Closest to the Earth–221,541 miles or 356,536 km.

11/14 08:52 Full Moon

11/16 05:00 Leonid Meteor Shower–5.7 Meteors/hour.

11/17 05:00 Leonid Meteor Shower Maximum–8.2 Meteors/hour.

11/18 05:00 Leonid Meteor Shower–5.6 Meteors/hour.

11/21 03:33 Last Quarter Moon.