Milwaukee Astronomical Society


FAQ - Frequently Asked Questions

This section tries to answer some of inquires the MAS gets on a regular basis.  We are very appreciative of those who read this section before contacting us.  But don't be deterred, we do welcome inquires!


When does the MAS hold its open house nights?

There are generally 6 or 7 Open House nights a year from Spring until Fall.  Refer to either the Home Page or the Public Observing Nights page.


How do I join? What are the benefits of joining the MAS?

Please refer to the Join the MAS page.


Who can join the Milwaukee Astronomical Society?

Anyone with an interest in astronomy.


Where does the MAS meet?

The MAS holds most of its meetings at the Observatory except during the winter months where generally they are held at UWM in Milwaukee, the Retzer Nature Center in Waukesha, or the New Berlin Public Library. The current schedule for both meeting times and location can always be found on our home page.


How often are meetings held?

Meetings are held every month except during the summer months.  The MAS Board meets monthly.


Are there telescopes that members can rent?



Do I have to own a telescope to be a member?

No!  In fact we generally discourage new members from buying a telescope right away because we can save them a lot of money by first learning more about telescopes so when they do buy they're getting one that meets their needs. 


We purchased a telescope and we either can't get it set up or we can't make it work. Does the club offer assistance?

For the general public the answer is generally no, although we do have an entire section called the Beginner's Guide that has a lot of useful information. Telescopes are notoriously difficult to set up and use and it's big reason why we discourage our new members from buying a telescope right away. We do offer hands on assistance to our members so you can get that by joining.


Can I give a gift membership for someone who I think would like to join the club?

Yes! We have a special membership application. You can find information about that on our Application Information page.  


I have a telescope that is not being used. Does the MAS accept telescope donations?

In general we do not since we have no shortage of telescopes.  


Can group tours be arranged to see the observatory?

Yes, but availability is extremely limited.  Please see the Visit The MAS page for details.


Can the observatory (especially the Quonset meeting hall) be rented for private events like wedding receptions and parties?

We cannot rent our facilities, not even to our membership. There are a number of reasons, but the biggest is our liability insurance doesn't cover it.


Where is the MAS Observatory?

18850 W Observatory Rd, New Berlin, WI 53146.  For a map and directions, visit our Map and Directions page.


Other Astronomical Questions?

A great resource for many astronomically related questions can be found at Ask The Astronomer website.