Resources and Education

Here you’ll find the resources you need to get started observing, photographing, and more — your essential introduction to astronomy. Learn the best telescopes for starting out, the basics of using a star wheel, and find Spanish-language introductions to stargazing. Whatever you try, good luck and clear skies!

Stargazing Basics
Common (and not so common) Questions & Answers
Astrophotography Advice & Resources

illustration of Proxima Centauri b

Orbital Path 9: Howdy, Neighbor!

For years astronomers anticipated a planet orbiting Proxima Centauri. Michelle Thaller talks with astrophysicist Patricia Boyd about NASA’s ongoing search for exoplanets and what’s next for exploring other worlds.

Allen Telescope Array

Orbital Path 1: Must Be Aliens

Host Michelle Thaller talks with Bad Astronomy's Phil Plait about a conundrum: why are humans so quick to explain the unknowns of the cosmos as aliens? And why is this healthy imagination important in science?

iPhone Moon

Picture Perfect: Getting Started in Astrophotography

Few amateurs have looked through a telescope and not imagined what it would be like to take a photo of the target in the eyepiece. I know I did when I got my first telescope. But back then, astrophotography was practically a black art: 35mm film was the only medium of choice, and it required…

Annual Stargazing Events

Name Location Typical Date Winter Star Party West Summerland Key, FL Feb Hodges Gardens Star Party Florien, LA Mar Delmarva Spring Star Gaze Tuckahoe State Park, MD Mar Southern Star Astronomical Convention Little Switzerland, NC Apr Mid-South Star Gaze French Camp, MS Apr Northeast Astronomy Forum Suffern, NY Apr Astronomy Day (spring) Everywhere! Apr/May Texas…