Palmetto Bay Stargazing - FREE Every Saturday Night

Real Estate Agent with eXp Realty LLC BK 3126272

Credit Byron Bergert SCAS dot ORGLooking for something fun to do in Palmetto Bay on a Saturday night?  Look no more.  Not only is this fun, it's also FREE.  Sure beats the movies at $9 a pop.

The Southern Cross Astronomical Society has been bringing astronomy to us since 1922.  They meet each Saturday night at the Bill Sadowski Nature Preserve in Palmetto Bay from 8 - 10PM.  Their volunteers do this for fun.  We're lucky!

I took the kids there this past weekend.  We checked the weather and headed out.  When we arrived at the park, the gates were open (they're usually locked at this time) so I was pretty sure they were there in spite of the rain that had been threatening all day.

As we turned into the park I turned my lights off.  My youngest reminded me that I shouldn't be driving at night without my lights on.  I explained to her that I had shut them off at the request of the SCAS website.  She couldn't understand why until we met and chatted with one of the volunteers inside.

As we parked I have to admit that I couldn't see a darn thing and was thinking I should just put the car in reverse and head back home.  Must be the paranoid, over-protective mother in me!  There were only 3 cars in the parking lot that I could see.  We heard some voices coming from over where I knew the telescope pad is and I ushered the kids over there.  As we approached, our eyes started adjusting to the dark and I could see that there were a few more cars over by the pad.  These apparently belonged to the SCAS volunteers.

On the pad there were 3 huge telescopes set up for viewing.  They were nothing like the long-awaited Christmas gift telescope of childhood years.  These things were impressive!  Two had laptops hooked up to them and they were all programmable.  I saw the guys punch in numbers that would set the telescope whirring and turning as it looked for another celestial body to focus on.

The gentlemen that were there were very friendly and helpful.  They let the kids view whatever their scopes were focused on and encouraged questions.  Once the kids got their first peek through one of the eyeviewers their curiosity took over and a barrage of questions ensued.

  • How far away is that?
  • When will it reach us?
  • How far away can we see with these?
  • How long is a light year?
  • When did the star blow up that made the ring Nebula?
  • What's gonna happen when those two galaxies collide?
  • How come you don't have a laptop attached to your telescope? (it was stolen right here...shame, shame)

As we chatted about not having the car lights on when driving into the park, (it ruins their night vision and takes them 30 minutes to adjust their eyes again) one of the guys told us something he'd learned about pirates.  It seems pirates had a reason for wearing eye patches, besides covering a maimed eye.  The covered eye would be acclimated to the dark and when they went below deck they would switch the eyepatch so they could see above or below deck easily.  Pretty neat, eh?  He appreciated the fact that we had turned our lights off.  I could see what a difference it made when a car came in 2 minutes later with their beams shining brightly on all of us.  We all turned and looked the other way.

Somebody felt rain and they all scrambled for their plastic coverings.  We ran away and thanked them for their time and laughed as the rain got to us before we could get to the car. 

On the way home one of my nephews admitted that he had thought it was going to be another one of Tia's corny trips.  "Was it?" I asked.  "No way.  It was really cool.  I want to be an astronomer when I grow up!"

At least until I take him to the seaquarium. =)

Bill Sadowski Nature Preserve * SW 176 Street & 79 Avenue * 8-10PM @ Saturday (weather permitting)


Looking to buy or sell real estate in Palmetto Bay?  Contact the real estate agent who can guide you each step of the way.

Keeping the  Real in Real Estate...


Posted by

Maggie Dokic - Broker/Owner - Special Miami Homes

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For more information on our local real estate market, or to see or sell a home in Miami, Palmetto Bay, Pinecrest, Coral Gables or the Redland, visit our Miami Real Estate site or contact us at Team (at) SpecialMiamiHomes (dot) com.

The opinions expressed herein, are those of the author, and not necessarily of  Special Miami Homes.

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Comments (12)

Gary Bolen
McCall Realty - South Lake Tahoe, CA
CRS - Lake Tahoe Real Estate Information

maggie, another fun localism post, and another new photo. like this one too.


Oct 08, 2007 01:45 PM
Lola Audu
Lola Audu~Audu Real Estate~Grand Rapids, MI Real Estate - Grand Rapids, MI
Audu Real Estate~Grand Rapids, MI ~Welcome Home!
Hi Maggie, this sounds like so much fun!  As a kid, I loved looking at the stars and finding different groups like the Big Dipper etc.  What a marvelous experience to have with your kids.
Oct 08, 2007 02:05 PM
Paula Henry
Home to Indy Team @ HomeSmart Realty Group - Avon, IN
Realtor - Indianapolis Real Estate - 317-605-4174
Maggie - Sounds like a great way to spend time with the family and interesting too!
Oct 08, 2007 06:02 PM
Thesa Chambers
Fred Real Estate Group - Bend, OR
Principal Broker - Licensed in Oregon
ok.... now you are making me think - I have not been to the observatory in Sunriver in a couple years - guess it is time to go again - I love star gazing.... thanks for the reminder
Oct 08, 2007 07:03 PM
Brad Andersohn
Executive Director of Education at eXp Realty - Fairfield, CA
ActiveBrad - 707.646.1876
WOW! This is great!  Every Saturday night would be quite a commitment, but hanging out with the starz (like you) would be the best way anyone could spend a Saturday night!  Hope all is well Maggie, great post!!  :-)
Oct 08, 2007 09:35 PM
Maggie Dokic | Miami, FL | 888.883.8509 X101
eXp Realty LLC - Miami, FL
GREEN, CDPE, SFR, Pinecrest | Palmetto Bay |

Gary - thanks!  Don't get used to the eyebrow, the elbow's next! LOL

Lola - it really was fun.  No TV and being outdoors looking at things that may not even be there right now.  Mind boggling.  The kids loved it.

Paula - even the dash through the rain was fun!

Thesa - don't think any more.  Just do it!

Brad - oh how you flatter me.  Do go on.  LOL  Things are great.  If I were any better, I'd be twins! ;-)

Oct 08, 2007 10:57 PM
Marlene Bridges
Village Real Estate Services, Inc. - Laguna Hills, CA
Laguna Homes|Laguna Condos|Laguna Real Estate
Maggie - This sounds like fun.  I just saw an episode of Myth Busters on the Discovery Channel.  They actually proved that the eyepatch thing is true.  Sounds like you had a fun evening.  Have fun at the acquarium!
Oct 09, 2007 04:38 AM
Maggie Dokic | Miami, FL | 888.883.8509 X101
eXp Realty LLC - Miami, FL
GREEN, CDPE, SFR, Pinecrest | Palmetto Bay |
Marlene - I need to check that show out.  Here I was thinking I was passing on something unique and it was so old some wee considering it a myth?  LOL
Oct 09, 2007 06:48 AM
David A. Podgursky PA
THE PODGURSKY GROUP @ Re/Max Direct - Boynton Beach, FL
THE PODGURSKY GROUP - Make the Right Move!

VERY cool event

very affordable too!



Oct 09, 2007 09:30 AM
Maggie Dokic | Miami, FL | 888.883.8509 X101
eXp Realty LLC - Miami, FL
GREEN, CDPE, SFR, Pinecrest | Palmetto Bay |
David - yep, got both of those covered! lol
Oct 09, 2007 12:01 PM
Rita Taylor
None - Sanford, NC
Sanford NC Real Estate - Homes for Sale in Sanford North Carolina


We have a telescope and the kids love it.  I bet your kids will be talking about it for a long time.   

Oct 11, 2007 01:15 PM
Maggie Dokic | Miami, FL | 888.883.8509 X101
eXp Realty LLC - Miami, FL
GREEN, CDPE, SFR, Pinecrest | Palmetto Bay |
Rita - they were!  We made a note to go back when the meteor showers are expected!
Oct 12, 2007 04:29 AM

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