Last updated: 27 June 2004

In prior years there was some discussion of the possibility of holding a star party for ETX users, where many of us could get together to share experiences, learn new things, and to meet other ETX users in person. So in September 2001 the First Annual Mighty ETX Star Party was held in Southern California. It was a success and a second Mighty ETX Star Party was held in October 2002 in Illinois. I had hoped to continue the Mighty ETX Star Party as an annual event but due to various circumstances I couldn't get it all worked out for 2003. And due to various unforeseen complications, the originally planned dates in April 2004 didn't work out. However, a new date and location has been selected, as discussed below.

3nd Annual Mighty ETX Star Party

I will be in Phoenix, Arizona, in July for the annual Westercon Science Fiction Convention. It is held over the Fourth of July weekend. This year's convention will be held at the Wigwam Resort, Litchfield Park, near Phoenix. It is now confirmed that we hold a Mighty ETX Star Party Saturday evening, 3 July, at the Wigwam Resort. The Westercon conventions usually have a nice science track and many science fiction fans are also very interested in science. I have given talks on astronomy and telescopes at these conventions; they are well-attended. Unfortunately there is a Full Moon on 2 July and I don't know how dark the sky is from the Wigwam. If anyone knows this area please let me know how it is for observing.

Oceanside Photo and Telescope will be a sponsor of the 2004 Mighty ETX Star Party. They will be providing door prizes and possibly selling items appropriate for ETX and other telescope users.

Unlike past Mighty ETX Star Parties, I am not planning any specific talks but we could have informal discussions, questions & answers, and tutoring on telescope and Autostar use. For housing you would be on your own, although the Resort may still have rooms. But if you contact the Wigwam Resort, 800-327-0396, and book your room there, tell them you are attending the WesterCon ConKopelli, you will get the convention rate ($105). Let me know if you do make a reservation at the resort so that I can pass that info to the convention organizers. Thanks. Also, on Saturday night there will be a stargazing program as part of the WesterCon; we'll be piggybacking on that program. Right now the specific location for stargazing is still being determined; I'll post more info when it becomes available. You will not be required to pay for a membership to the convention although you are certainly welcome to register for the Westercon and attend it.

REMINDER: The Mighty ETX Star Party is confirmed for Saturday, 3 July, at the Wigwam Resort, near Phoenix, Arizona. If you plan to attend and haven't responded to me with the details requested below, please do so now. Also, as described above, you will be staying at the Wigwam please let me know (please include a count of yourself plus any family members or friends who will also be staying).

We will be set up (along with the Stargazing Event) at the Wigwam Resort Blue golf course fairway, just behind casitas 415-418. The star party starts at 8pm and will go until ???. Go to the convention website: and click on the hotel link then follow the links to the map of guest rooms you'll see the Blue golf course at the top. You'll see the driveway in front of the casitas. Here is a more detailed map of the resort:

Click for a large view

Call for Interest (04/22/04)

Call for Interest - Responses (06/24/04)

Call for Interest

In order to gauge the interest and to coordinate the Mighty ETX Star Party with the Westercon organizers I need your feedback. Please try to respond by 15 May with your level of interest.

A. Would you plan to attend? (no, maybe, definitely yes)

B. Will you bring your telescope(s)? If so, what models?

C. Which night is better for you, Friday, 2 July or Saturday, 3 July, or both?

D. If you plan to attend (or hope to attend) please let me know how many people will be coming with you and where you will be traveling from (City, State, Country).

I'll post responses here. Please email responses to me at this special email address: Please do not use this special address for general user feedback/inquiries/responses and please do not combine messages meant as a response to this "Call for Interest" with email sent for other purposes. Thanks.

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