This may seem a stretch, but there are connections between the Sky Bar on 4th Avenue in Tucson and the Lowell Observatory above Flagstaff, even though they are separated by almost 300 miles. First, both have telescopes through which you & I can view the heavens. Second, one is about to host a fundraiser to save the other. It’s called “Restore The Clark”. I know, I didn’t have a clue either. So here’s the skinny.
The Clark Telescope was the instrument by which astronomers first observed that the universe is expanding, seemingly in defiance of the Laws of Physics. Now the old boy is in desperate need of $250,000 worth of restoration if it is to continue its mission to educate the public, you & me, about the planets, stars, galaxies, and other crazy things hurling through space at mind-boggling speed.
The Arizona Experience Store on Congress, one of my favorites, and members of the local astronomy community here in Tuk-Shon town will gather on Thursday April 25th to celebrate the Clark’s cosmic impact, the first telescope in the Southwest.
“Hosting an event at Sky Bar for the Restore the Clark campaign is a great fit, says Kevin Schindler, Lowell’s Outreach Manager and Historian. The Clark Telescope is an icon of Arizona’s cultural heritage, and one of the most important telescopes in American history. V.M. Slipher’s discovery of the expanding nature of the Universe via the Clark remains the most important discovery made at Lowell, trumping even Clyde Tombaugh’s discovery of Pluto. The Clark is now one of the great public outreach telescopes, and is often called the ‘People’s Telescope.’ The Tucson community is very attuned to astronomy so we hope this event is a rousing success.”
He will highlight the Clark’s history – from Percival Lowell’s Mars research to V.M. Slipher’s work to moon mapping for the first Apollo mission. Kevin will also cover the incredibly important role the telescope has and will play in Lowell’s public programs, including public visitation, special programs, and summer Kids’ Camps.
Computers and other devices will be able to secure online donations to the campaign’s crowd funding site, http://www.indiegogo.com/projects/restore-the-clark. Since Lowell is a non-profit, it will receive all funds raised online, even if the goal is not reached. Thanks to the incredible generosity of a longtime Friend of Lowell, our online goal is now only $89,550, down from $256,718.50 (our total overall goal, offline and online).
If the Clark Telescope is to continue its mission to conduct groundbreaking research to share with the public, it’s imperative that the remaining 90 grand be raised. So, your participation in this event will be greatly appreciated.
When: Thursday April 25th starting at 6:45 PM.
Where: Sky Bar at 536 N. 4th Avenue