Thanks to a generous donation from one of its most long standing and respected members, Astronomical Society of Victoria members can enjoy the use a 'dark sky site' for astronomical observing about 1.5 hours north of Melbourne near the central Victorian town of Heathcote.
The 'Leon Mow Dark Sky Site' is available for use by members at any time, and is host to popular annual events that are open to the public, notably the Messier Star party in March, the Galactic Centre Star Party (Members' only) around September and the Christmas Star-B-Q at the end of the year.
Generally, members bring their own telescopes and binoculars, share the view through other members' viewing equipment, or just appreciate the Southern sky with the naked eye. If you don't there will be scopes to view through plus the society's 40-inch telescope and the 25-inch Obsession will be in operation.
Amenities on the site include club rooms with stove, hot and cold running water, toilets and showers.
There are two observing fields: general viewing field and a photographic field. Both have plenty of room to setup your scope and a reliable 240V power supply installed. Members can also camp overnight on-site in designated areas.
The Leon Mow radio observatory site can be reached here
The LMDSS coordinator and management committee maintain and develop the ASV's Leon Mow Dark Sky Site under the direction of the ASV council. The committee is also involved in planning and financial matters related to the upkeep and development of the site. The committee's main role is to make the site as useful to ASV members as possible, by fostering its primary purpose as an astronomical observing site. The committee liaises with other ASV sections (eg: meteor section) regarding the use of the site, and reports regularly to the ASV council on matters such as recent developments, usage of the site and financial matters.
The management committee is always looking for people who are willing to help out with short and long term projects to maintain and develop the LMDSS for the benefit of ASV members.
For further information, please contact the LMDSS coordinator Gavan Salter at email@example.com.