Wabash Valley Astronomical Society, Inc.
Wabash Valley Astronomical Society (WVAS) is a non-profit organization that promotes the science and hobby of astronomy. We've been in the Greater Lafayette, Indiana, area since 1971 and our current membership includes people with many different backgrounds and with ages from high school through retirees. People join WVAS because they have an interest in planetary and deep sky observing, locating constellations, astrophotography, telescope making, cosmology, or they just "want to see what's out there". We are affiliated with the Astronomical League, a nationwide federation of astronomy clubs. We are available for group educational presentations and observing sessions. Additionally, we are members in the JPL Night Sky Network, a NASA group to encourage astronomy outreach. WVAS is a supporting organization of the International Dark Sky Association in their pursuit of reduced light pollution through better lighting practices.
Our base of operations is the West Lafayette Observatory at 600 Cumberland Avenue. (Directions to WLO) The observatory is owned by the West Lafayette School Corporation and is operated by the Purdue University Physics Department and is used for teaching and research. The observatory's exact location is 86º 54.39'W, 40º 27.68'N, 216m.
The observatory has a 20 seat classroom and houses a computerized 16" diameter Meade LX200 Schmidt-Cassegrain telescope, a 10" Newtonian, an 8" binocular telescope, and an 8" Orion Deep Space Explorer Newtonian. The 10" Newtonian and 8" binocular telescopes were built by WVAS members. The Deep Space Explorer telescope can be signed out by WVAS members and by community organizations. Our dark site observing location is at the Prairie Grass Observatory located within Camp Cullom.
Due to construction around the West Lafayette Observatory this spring and summer, our monthly open meetings may or may not be held there. We will do our best to keep this page updated with the most current schedule and also with announcements on our Facebook page. Similarly, our public open houses, normally held at the observatory, will be relocated this May. We hope to resume our stargazing open house events at the observatory for September 8 and October 6.
We at Wabash Valley Astronomical Society would like to thank the West Lafayette Parks and Recreation Department for letting us host our April Open House at West Lafayette's Celery Bog Nature Area (1620 Lindberg Rd.).