Southern California Desert Video Astronomers

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John Dobson's 95th Birthday Party at Griffith Observatory

Our trip to the Griffith Observatory  in Los Angeles on Saturday, September 18th 2010, became an action packed event that was filled with astronomy fun and excitement  for us and hundreds of other visitors.

Not only were we there to celebrate the worldwide "OMN", Observe the Moon Night, with the
Astronomers Without Boarders, and the  Los Angeles Sidewalk Astronomers, but also to join in on a birthday party celebration in honor of John Dobson for his 95th Birthday!

Besides being the father of the Dobsonion Telescope, John is credited as being one of the pioneer founders of The Sidewalk Astronomers!  This famous group was started by John along with two young men he  helped to build telescopes.  

Building telescopes is what John is known for best and is something he has done for many years. Now, at 95 years of experience, he says he no longer makes telescopes but enjoys the images from telescopes that "other people have made".

He continues to be very active on the streets with his group and can be found doing what he likes most, sharing his insight and knowledge with everyone he meets.

The Sidewalk Astronomers are a public service amateur astronomy association who provide astronomy events for public viewing of the night sky. They take telescopes to the public, whether it be  on street corners, public parks, in front of bookstores, or wherever crowds of people gather. Most people  they meet say they have never looked through a telescope and don't get the chance to see the night sky any other way. Dark sky awareness and our connection to the universe is the motivation they share with the public and the outreach effort is aimed at helping and improving society.


                                                                                                                                                                                     copyright SCDVA 2010

An interview with John Dobson on his 95th birthday
from  outside The Griffith Observatory

Griffith Observatory


A few of the highlights on the inside

Domed ceiling located in the center of the building

Beautiful marble images around the circumference of the interior

Marvelous 3 dimensional displays


A wall of astronomical jewelery


Leonard and John Dobson chatting it up earlier in the day

John Dobson founded the Sidewalk Astronomers

German visitors enjoy the views from the Lunt Solar Scope

Early setup

The Kids only Zone was the place to be

Kids from anywhere welcome


John and the guys heading over to the big scopes

"The Little One"  shown here, is one of many telescopes John has built.

John is still a Star Gazer and is checking out the view of the Moon

Like a cannon getting ready to shoot the Moon

Nice Views all around.  With or without a scope

Leonard's' good to go!
His Wi-Fi indicator shirt  is showing 5 bars

Tom setting up the Tele-Vue Pronto.
This telescope was auctioned to benefit the Astronomers Without Boarders organization. 
AWB encourages worldwide astronomy outreach to unite everyone around the world by sharing interest in our night sky. 

Broadcast central as we were broadcasting live on the NSN the happenings of the evening

Jupiter as it moves across the night sky

Jupiter shines bright in the East

There were at least 500 star gazers before evenings end

Leonard at the helm and speaking to the world as we are broadcasting the Moon on the
Night Skies Network
A great group of armature astronomers who are passionate when it comes to broadcasting deep sky images.  Be sure to go to their site and check it out.

Despite city lights, Venus shines bright

For information on how you can help to keep our dark night skies.
 click on the link below
International Dark Sky Association


The above images by Leonard Holmberg, Valeree Woodard & Debbie O'Key