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Last Total Lunar Eclipse until 2019 !

(September 22)

On Sunday night, September 27, the Full Moon will undergo a remarkable transformation, going from a brilliant Supermoon to a nearly invisible deep red "Blood Moon". This will be the last total lunar eclipse visible from Eastern Canada until Jan 20, 2019 ...more than 3 years from now!

The uneclipsed Full Moon will rise at 7:00 pm EDT, in the direction almost exactly opposite where the Sun will set. By 9:07 pm, the Moon will be about 20 degrees above the southeast horizon and if the sky is clear, you will see the Moon begin to disappear along its left edge. The "bite" will progressively grow as more of the Moon goes dark until the Moon becomes fully eclipsed at 10:11 pm. For the next hour till 11:23 pm, the Moon will glow dimly with a dull orange or possibly deep red colour. Then from 11:23 pm till 12:27 am, the Moon will slowly exit the Earth's shadow and return to its usual Full Moon appearance.

The DDOD is proudly sponsoring a free one-hour talk at 7:00 pm on Friday September 25 at Langstaff Community Centre, 155 Red Maple Road at Bantry Avenue in Richmond Hill.

You will learn about the cause and significance of total lunar eclipses and about many other celestial events happening this Fall. The free talk will be followed by a very modestly priced ($10) hands-on tutorial session where you will be instructed how to take photographs of the Moon. If weather permits and you bring your own camera and tripod, we will then practice outdoors taking pictures of the actual Moon in advance of the eclipse night.

Come join professional astronomers Dr. Tuba Koktay and Dr. Ian Shelton for some eclipse observing on Sunday Sep.27 from 8:00 - 11:30pm at Langstaff Community Centre Park (east of 155 Red Maple Road along Bantry Avenue.

Weather permitting, we will have telescopes for close-up views and knowledgeable people to explain the eclipse and other features in the nighttime sky to you and your family. We'll even assist you in capturing an image of the eclipse if you bring your camera and a tripod. Please bring lawn chairs and warm clothing if you want to watch or photograph the Moon's initial transformation, which takes about an hour. Telescopes will be set up east of the Bantry Avenue parking lot.

Wishing everyone clear AND DARK skies,

--Ian Shelton, DDOD Chair

P.S. - Our next Intro Astrophotograpy course begins Tuesday September 29th. We still have openings if you want to join us.

The David Dunlap Observatory lies nestled in the heart of Richmond Hill, Ontario, a city of 200,000 just north of Canada's largest city, Toronto. The 190-acre oasis of mature forests, pastures and springs is home to two distinct deer herds and an abundance of other wildlife, including a coyote pack, foxes, voles, rabbits, honey bees, many species of butterflies, and birds including hawks, owls, doves, crows and songbirds. The property represents the last and largest urban open green space in southern Richmond Hill.

Originally deeded to the University of Toronto by the philanthropist Jessie Donalda Dunlap in memory of her husband David, the Dunlap Observatory opened on May 31st, 1935. Its magnificent 74-inch telescope was the second largest in the world at that time and has been used through seven decades to conduct much groundbreaking research, including the discovery of the first known black hole, Cygnus X-1.

In 2007, the University of Toronto wrested control of the land from Jessie Dunlap's heirs through a protracted legal case spanning 4 years. They then broke the public covenant that the land would remain a park and a research and outreach centre in perpetuity by selling the property to a developer intent on replacing most of the greenspace with hundreds of houses.

The DDO Defenders have been working hard to represent the public and inform all levels of government about what will be lost if the developer is allowed to proceed.

On April 12th, 2012, after six long and anxiety-ridden months of Ontario Municipal Board (OMB) mandated mediation following a four year hard-fought and very public battle, an agreement was reached in March between the mediation parties to the David Dunlap Observatory Lands OMB case.

Minutes of Settlement were drawn up for signing by all parties to the mediation -- the landowner, Corsica Development Inc. (a subsidiary of MetrusDevelopments Inc.), the Town of Richmond Hill, the Region of York, the Toronto and Area Conservation Authority (TRCA), and the David Dunlap Observatory Defenders (DDO Defenders) Inc. This historic document was ratified by Richmond Hill Town Council on Thursday, April 12th. All mediation parties had been sworn to absolute secrecy under a strict gag order until Council signed off on the agreement, but now the silence has finally been broken and the details of the settlement agreement can be made public. (read more)

For further information or to offer support, please contact:

Ian Shelton - Chair, DDO Defenders Inc.
sn87a@hotmail.com or (905) 762-0072

The Minutes of Settlement is posted at the Town of Richmond Hill - DDO webpage.

Please support our Community Advocacy

The DDO Defenders are deeply committed to preserving the David Dunlap Observatory, surrounding Lands and the Dunlap Legacy. Our mandate is to ensure that the campus continues to operate as a world-class astronomical and astrophysical research facility and a centre of excellence in public Outreach, Education and Experiential Learning regarding all aspects of Science and the Natural World.

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Please make your cheque or money order payable to "DDO Defenders" and send it to:

DDO Defenders
240 Bantry Avenue
Richmond Hill, ON
Canada L4B 4H9.

Donating by Phone

Call us at (905) 762-0072