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Jan Dabrowski to Present at Star Gazer Gathering

The planets Mars and Saturn will be the featured evening attractions at the annual Prineville Reservoir State Park Star Party on May 19, 2012.

Jan Dabrowski, dean of Marylhurst University's College of Arts and Sciences, will be the featured speaker.

Dr. Dabrowski's talk, More Earths Than You Can Count, focuses on the search for habitable planets outside of our solar system.

The planets will share the usually clear, dark central Oregon sky with colorful star clusters, nebulae (interstellar clouds of dust and gases) and distant galaxies. All will be observable from the park's day-use area where sky watchers can gather by a permanent observatory housing "Big Doug," a 16-inch telescope.

The "partygoers" will be invited to peer through "Big Doug" and other telescopes provided by professional and amateur astronomers when the serious viewing begins at 10 p.m. A 30-minute orientation—A Guided Tour of the Night Sky—will precede the late-night viewing.

The Oregon Observatory of Sunriver, Oregon and Oregon Parks and Recreation Department are co-organizers of the event.

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