Rockland Astronomy Club
Serving Astronomy Enthusiasts
The Rockland Astronomy Club is a 501c3 non-profit educational organization composed of more than 250 people who share a keen interest in Amateur Astronomy.
Membership in the club is open to individuals and their families regardless of their knowledge about the science of Astronomy.
One does not have to own a telescope to belong to the club, but should have the desire to learn about the wonders of the Universe and share his or her enthusiasm with other members.
Join or Renew Your RAC Membership
Annual Dues - Effective April 1, 2013
• Adult – $20.00
• Family – $30.00
• Senior (65+) – $15.00
• Student (18 or under) – $10.00
Note: Children under 18 must be supervised
by an adult at RAC events.
Optional (Add'l Cost)
• Sky & Telescope
Subscription $33.00 (1 Year)
Subscription $34.00 (1 Year)
• Amateur Astronomer
Various membership plans are offered to suit individual requirements. You may join at any time during the year for a period of twelve months. There are no special requirements for membership other than the payment of annual dues. We look forward to having you as a member of our club and look forward to meeting you at one or more of our club functions.
Paying by Check or Money Order
If you prefer to join or renew your the membership by snail mail with a check or money order, please send the appropriate annual dues (and any optional magazine subscriptions) made out to "Rockland Astronomy Club, Inc.".
Please print out the Rockland Astronomy Club Membership Application Form (PDF),
complete and mail along with your check to the address below. We'll email you a confirmation of your membership enrollment within 30 days or by snail mail within 60 days:
Rockland Astronomy Club, Inc.
225 Route 59
Suffern, NY 10901-5203
For additional information, please contact our hotline:
Box 4 is for Public Events,
Box 5 is for Members Only Events.
Benefits of Membership
Amateur Astronomy is a lot more than just looking at celestial objects with telescopes and binoculars, although this is the main focus of our most active members. In addition to scheduled observing activities, we hold periodic indoor meetings at various locations where programs are presented that focus on specific aspects of Astronomy.
Among the most popular are topics relating to the purchase and use of astronomical telescopes – where to find them, what to look for, and which ones to avoid. Other subjects deal with basic celestial navigation, how to read star charts, and learning how to locate and identify galaxies, nebulae and star clusters that are generally not visible to the naked eye.
• Special Events
The Club gathers for great food and mingling during the RAC Annual Dinner (RAD), a luxurious evening held in late Winter featuring an expert astronomy lecture, and the RAC StarBQ, held in late Summer, where a tasty free barbeque is sandwiched between solar and night-time viewing at one of our exclusive State Park observing sites.
In addition, members of the club sometimes travel to various worldly destinations in search of truly dark skies or for once-in-a-lifetime events. The 1986 return of Halley's Comet was a good excuse for us to fly half way around the world to Australia. The great solar eclipse of 1991 found entire families spending ten days in Hawaii and Mexico.
• Summer Star Party (SSP)
Not to be outdone by the big-name national star parties, we hold our own "Summer Star Party & Family Camping Vacation" for 10 days every July or August at Peppermint Park Camping Resort, located in the Berkshire Mountains of Massachusetts. Just 3-1/2 hours from home via scenic, uncrowded roads, the dark skies at this site rival some of the best found along the East Coast. It's Astronomy at night and family fun during the long summer days with many nearby attractions to visit and magnificent mountain vistas and natural wonders to capture on film.
• Local Observing Opportunities
Much closer to home the club, in cooperation with the Palisades Interstate Parks Commission, holds monthly "Joy of the Universe" (JOU) open to the public star parties at Anthony Wayne State Park from April through October. This is where many people obtain their initial exposure to observational Astronomy by viewing through telescopes owned by our club members. We also have exclusive permits for our members at two great dark sky observing sites - Lake Taghkanic State Park and Lake Wawayanda State Park.
• Annual Telescope Show (NEAF)
Each Spring we sponsor the "Northeast Astronomy Forum and Telescope Show", held at the RCC Field house in Suffern, New York. Come and rub shoulders with some of the biggest names in space and astronomy science. This full day of talks and lectures by prominent thinkers, professionals, and amateur astronomers, and a commercial display of astronomical equipment by manufacturers and retail vendors attracts 4,000+ amateur astronomers and enthusiasts from all over the world, looking for bargains on equipment to enrich their hobby. If you ever wished you could "try before you buy", you can do it here.
• Reduced Rate Subscriptions
Members of the club enjoy special "club rate" prices for annual subscriptions to the two most popular magazines, Sky & Telescope and Astronomy. The publishers of both offer discounts to members of participating clubs. Savings can be equal to the annual club membership fee.
Members receive emails and postcards to keep them informed of upcoming Club events. And of course, this Web Site is continually updated with all the latest and greatest RAC events.