San Diego Astronomy Association (SDAA) sponsors speakers on a wide range of astronomy topics on the third Wednesday of every month at the Mission Trails Regional Park Visitors Center. The Program meeting begins at 7:00 PM. Each attendee receives one free door prize ticket. After announcements and a small amount of business, the audience is treated to the featured presentation. At the close of the meeting the door prizes are presented.  The event is open to the public. The Mission Trails Regional Park Visitors Center is at One Fr. Junipero Serra Trail, San Diego CA 92119.  Call the park at 619-668-3281 for more information or visit

Please contact Mike Chasin if you have an questions, comments, or ideas for the Program Meetings.

March 15, 2017

Speakers: Lisa Bruhn, Bill Carter, Doug Sollosy

Topic: IDA & Julian Dark Sky Network   

Bill Carter, a co-founder of the Julian Dark Sky Network, is a seasoned astro-imager and cosmology buff. Attracted to Julian by its star filled dark night skies, Bill and his wife Susan located in the Cuyamaca Woods area ten years ago. It wasn’t long before Bill had set up an observatory on his property and taken up astro-imaging. His images are available in numerous outlets in Julian. He also writes a column on binocular astronomy published regularly in the Julian News, and leads a local sky quality monitoring project sponsored by the JDSN.

Doug Sollosy, a more recent resident of Julian, has been interested in astronomy since his high schoool days, when he jumped into amateur telescope making and joined the San Diego Astronomical Society. After high school, Doug took a few decades off from the hobby, while still following developments in the science. Several years ago he got bitten once again by the by the bug got a scope, joined the SDAA and started attending SDAA star parties, where he met Todd Rogelstad, a long time local amateur. After attending Julian StarFest for a couple of years Doug decided to look for a site for an observatory in Julian. Within a year Doug and Todd found the right hilltop and in less than a year built an observatory, Curiosity Peak, which can best be described as a semi-private/ semi-public observing and imaging site with a small group of regulars, where visiting amateur astronomers as well as curious people are very welcome.

At StarFest in 2015 Doug, Todd, Bill and Kaleigh Kaltenthaler, a Julian high school student, met and soon realized they shared the view that Julian’s skies were an oasis for amateur astronomy, but also threatened by the growing light domes of the surrounding areas. With support and involvement from other local people the Julian Dark Sky Network was founded and has been an active force promoting a culture of dark sky enjoyment and preservation in the community since its first event in January of last year. Besides putting on an ambitious array of lectures, star parties and other activities the JDSN is currently exploring the possibility of Julian attaining the status of an IDA designated Dark Sky Community. 

Upcoming SDAA Program Meetings
January No general meeting - annual banquet on February 11, 2017
February 15 R. Lee Hamm: The Cleveland National Forest and how the National Forest can better meet SDAA’s needs as a user
March 15 Tim Thompson, LA Astronomical Society, JPL, Mt Wilson docent: Mt Wilson Observatory
April 19 Joint meeting with the International Dark Sky Association
May 17 Jerry Hilburn: New Horizons Mission Update - Onward to KBO - 2014 MU69
June 21 Dr.Stella Kafka: the Large Synoptic Survey Telescope
July 19 Alex Tardy, NOAA/National Weather Service: How to use NWS Forecasts
August 16 Eclipse Photo Tips
September 20 TBD
October 18 TBD
November 15 Gadget night