The Culprit!

I was always a science nerd growing up, and even though my physics R&D lab in grad school was on the same floor as the astronomy department, I never even had time to take an astronomy class in college! Years later my wife and I are walking through Fry’s and see a cheap little Celestron telescope on clearance for $10. We decide to buy it and said if we ever used it, we’d buy something better. It sat in the foyer for a year or two and one summer evening we’re looking up from the pool and wondering what that bright star is overhead. I said, “Well, we have a telescope; let’s find out.” After fiddling and fiddling with it, I managed to get a great view of Jupiter. However, by the time my wife could look, it was moving out of field. So her response was, “That’s it! We’re buying a better telescope tomorrow!” Thus began a saga starting with a NexStar 8se, and ending up with the recent completion of Orion Ranch Observatory! You can see both the observatory and the culprit that started it all here at

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