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Moon-Venus Conjunction & Blue Moon
May 2007

conjunction 2007

conjunction on TV
Submitted the photo to the KKTV Channel 11 TV station in Colorado Springs at 9:10 p.m.
and they used it a few minutes later on the 10 p.m. news cast. Rosita refers to the
historic 1880s mining town that we live just a mile from to the west.

Full story: Last Friday I looked out the west window and noticed that Venus and the moon were in conjunction. So I got out my Canon S2 digital camera that has a 12x optical zoom with image stabilization (used a tripod anyway) and zoomed a bit more, 15x, with the digital zoom feature for better framing and got the above photo.
Since the Colorado Springs Channel 11 weather guys had used two of my snow photos in recent weeks and it was an uneventful weather day, I thought it worth the effort to submit the photo less than an hour before the 10 p.m. broadcast. When they switched over to the weather portion there was my photo on the big screen behind the forecaster, Ty Shesky — pretty cool!
He had sent me an email saying that he "wasn't even an amateur astronomer" so he didn't know what a conjunction was. In between the beginning weather teaser and the actual weather newscast, I responded that it was just a visual alignment from our perspective here on earth and, while pretty, had no real significance. He had time to respond that was what he thought it was, but when he actually described the photo he just said Venus and the moon were in conjunction without explaining to the public what that really meant.

Blue Moon on Thursday, May 31—

Since it was a quiet weather day up here in south-central Colorado, I figured that the KKTV Channel 11's Ty Shesky would be open to use a photo or two of the blue moon that evening. Our eastern horizon is blocked by pine trees and the 11,000' Wet Mountains, so my wife, Jacquie, and I headed up to a small peak a quarter mile southwest of our home to get a better view of the rising full moon. There were low lying clouds off on the southeast horizon so I figured it would be well past the scheduled 8:30 p.m. rise time and it was. Just about gave up when at 9:05 we finally saw the bright yellow lining appear around the clouds and shortly after there was a very dramatic view of the moon coming up out of the clouds, see photo below:
Blue Moon and clouds

We waited for another 15 minutes for the moon to fully clear the clouds for the following photo:
Blue Moon

The event itself was very exciting to watch unfold especially since there had been a 500 lb. plus black bear visiting our neighborhood just the night before! So we were very aware of any sounds and ready to dive into our truck at any hint of being approached by such a huge animal. We then rushed home so I could select and process the photos in Photoshop and get them sent off to Ty for the 10 p.m. news just 35 minutes away. First I sent him a heads-up email with a link to a NASA page describing Blue Moons so he could prepare if he wanted to consider my photos. He responded almost immediately that he would use them for his 10:21 p.m. segment lead-in. Ty was very kind in thanking us for our efforts when he presented the photos. I'm just amazed at the technology that makes this all possible and it's fun, too!

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