March Meeting Ends with a (Big) Bang!

March Monthly Meeting Synopsis, by Ed Mizzi

Attendance was up for the March meeting, with 45 people present at the Legion Hall in Waterdown.

Gary Bennett opened the meeting with a warm welcome to both club members and members of the public. He also welcomed new members and discussed the agenda for the meeting.

He began his report by describing the RASC Certificate Program and announced the most recent winner in the Category of Astro Imaging Certificate: Wide Field. Scott Barrie was then called up to receive his award and was introduced to those in attendance. His photographs were displayed for the crowd, which was very impressed by what Scott had accomplished. Congratulations to Scott Barrie.

Gary Colwell was next with his regular “What’s up in the sky this month” (March 2017 Edition). Gary, with the help of slides he had produced, described a few of the special events that would occur in March. The most exciting event involved an occultation involving the Moon and Aldebaran. Gary invited Roger Hill to give more details about this event. Roger explained exactly what would occur and invited others to join him at a spot in Georgetown, where the best viewing of this event would occur. The excitement in Roger’s voice was almost palatable!

We then had a 15 minute break during which people could chat with fellow members and introduce themselves to others.

At this point in the evening, Gary Bennett introduced our special guest speaker, Dr. Niayesh Afshordi, who is a member of the Faculty of Science (Dept. of Physics and Astronomy) at the University of Waterloo. Dr. Afshordi’s presentation was entitled “What Banged and Why? The greatest detective story of all time!”

Dr. Afshordi provided us with a very enlightening talk about models and theories about the Big Bang and provided us with a variety of scenarios about how our Universe began. He left us with lots of “food for thought” and broadened our horizons about how things could have occurred. He also answered several inquisitive questions from the audience and offered to return to give other talks if asked.

The meeting was adjourned and several attendees met for further discussion at the local Royal Coachmen pub. The primary topic was the Solar Eclipse on August 21, 2017.

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