Ross School has partnered with Montauk Observatory to create the first permanent observation space on the South Fork. The observatory will be home to a research-grade 20” Meade telescope housed on Ross School’s East Hampton campus, and it will end a decade-long struggle to build a permanent observatory on the East End. The state-of-the-art observatory will be fully networked, and members of the public will be able to request remote observation time. Priority will be given to teachers and industry professionals.
“When we began the Montauk Observatory 10 years ago, we had two goals: to host [astronomy events] in the South Fork for people of all ages…and to build a permanent observatory to give students and professionals access to the dark skies of the East End,” said Terry Bienstock, president of Montauk Observatory. “With the Ross School partnership, we will finally reach our second goal and house the largest professional telescope on Long Island.”
“Community and innovation are key tenets of the Ross School philosophy, so partnering with Montauk Observatory to create a permanent home for their telescope was a natural fit,” said Courtney Sale Ross, Ross School founder. “Having the observatory on the Ross campus provides a great resource to our students and faculty—adding another layer through which students can interact with our integrated curriculum. We also hope that this addition will inspire the wider community to come onto campus and experience the opportunities @Ross.”
Ross School and Montauk Observatory will share use of the space. Ross students will engage in viewing experiences that correspond with each grade level’s cultural history and science curricula, while Innovation Lab @Ross will engage in original scientific research using the telescope.
Montauk Observatory will continue hosting an ongoing lecture series at the Ross Tennis Center and locations throughout the East End, with each presentation followed by guided observation sessions. These events are free and open to the public.
The next event is a discussion with Harvard astrophysicist Dr. Ian Czeala scheduled for August 18, at 7:30pm in the Ross School Tennis Center.