Here are some of my thoughts after Sunday's celestial spectacle:
1) The location was fantastic. We set up in a public park on grass as lush as I have ever seen. The feel of that turf, plus the fact that solar radiation wasn't baking us from below, as it would have if we'd set up on asphalt, made the whole day a comfortable one. Thanks again to Carl Wenning and Jeff Hunt for finding that site.
2) The group, most of whom have participated in hundreds of public star parties, were fantastic hosts to the "other" hundred or so folks who were in the park. We explained what we were there for and encouraged them to look through the telescopes. Special thanks go to Jen Winter of DayStar Filters, who must have given away 75 Mylar Sun-viewing glasses.
3) The sky was deep blue and cloudless all day.
4) The range of equipment was impressive. At the low end, I brought a #14 welder's glass to look through. At the mid-end, Darren Trizzino, Mike Reynolds, and Jackie Beucher all brought high-quality equipment, either to view through or to image with. And at the top end, the aforementioned Jen Winter and Fred Bruenjes brought a trailer full of DayStar gear. My friends, I shall not soon forget the view of the Sun through the DayStar helium-line filter. I have never seen such detail in sunspots with eye to eyepiece.
I'll continue this later, but now it's time to travel. Stay tuned.
Related blog: The day before annularity