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  • Rapt in Awe

    My Journey through the Astronomical Year

    Think of this as a "companion text" to this, the main web site. Not required reading, butI hope you'll find it interesting and helpful.

About me . . .

. . . My name is Greg Stone. I’m a retired writer and web developer. I live in Westport, MA, with my wife, Brenda, and our two cockapoos, Eliza and Higgins. I help Bren and the pups

Bren and Eliza, Higgins and me.

with their chosen (retirement) profession, pet-assisted therapy. Bren is a retired school psychologist and my best friend – we grew up next door to one another – and she helps me in many ways, including putting these pages into correct English. I have been an amateur astronomer for more than half a century, though my focus on astronomy has intensified since my retirement. I still have a thousand things I love to do, and I hate to apply any label to myself – or others, for that matter. In retirement I discovered that sharing the universe with others was especially satisfying, so I opened up my backyard observatory to the general public by appointment, of course, and have hosted many groups and individuals of all ages and levels of knowledge and interest.

This six-inch refractor, a 10-inch reflector, and an 8-inch Schmidt-Cassegrain are the main scopes on the observing deck on any given night. An RV-6 Dynascope - a classic Newtonian reflector - is also available and several smaller refractors, plus large binoculars. (Click image for larger view.)

me_article_image2Driftway Observatory – my backyard – is where I do most of my observing. It is equipped with several telescopes, the largest being a 10-inch reflector, which is mounted in the center of the Observing deck.  I do a lot of my personal observing with a smaller instrument in the little domed observatory building.

The small observatory with its rotating dome gives cover from wind and straylight and any of several different instruments can be mounted inside it.

12 Responses

  1. Lookin’ good Greg.

  2. Hi Greg,

    Nice website and kudos for opening your observatory to the public! We need more educational and public awareness programs to spark interest in amateur astronomy.

  3. Really an amazing, very well designed site, Greg. It’s obvious a lot of time and effort have gone into this. I’ll keep checking back.

  4. Hi Mr. Stone. I am a senior at Barrington High School, and I was wondering if you would be willing to be my mentor for my Senior Project field work. I originally asked Pete Peterson, who directed me to ASSNE, who then directed me to you. If you could email me back, it would be greatly appreciated.

  5. We’d like to schedule a field trip. Could you please email me at akritka@gmail.com


  6. Greg, great job!
    In many ways you sound much like myself. Like you I enjoy many things, sometimes weeks and even months would go by without touching my telescope. But every now and then out of know were i look up and realize I haven’t done what I enjoy most.
    I also live in Massachusetts ( Oxford ). And i am currently building a 6 foot dome for a small Oberatory in my back yard also. I am very much just a casual observer. No books or study’s, just love looking at the winter evening stars / planets / clusters and more. Kinda like a spiritual thing for me I think?

    Just wanted to say hello, and I’m glad the are others like myself here in Massachusetts. Great website also! I will use it once i am up and running. It will be helpful, thank you.


    • Thanks for the kind words Bill – I’m sure you’ll love your new observatoru – especially in a Massachusetts winter!

  7. Greg,

    You have a nice web site full of useful information for amateur astronomers of all levels of experience. Keep up the good work!

    Robert Lunsford
    Operations Manager
    American Meteor Society

  8. Impressive site!! Thank you!

    Chad E. Sykes, Sr.
    Redwood Falls, Mn.

  9. Hi, Greg:

    . . . too bad that I can only follow you and Brenda from a distance . . . I have enjoyed the “Stone” soup now for nearly forty years . . . and to say the least . . . what a continuous adventure . . . what scrumptious feast . . . what will be next . . . ?


    • Ahh . . . glad to hear you’re still out there and nothing has changed. We need to have breakfast one of these days!

  10. Hi greg

    enjoyed your site. We all seem to have different lay outs for observing the sky, but what catches my attention the most is our commonality for the the love of being under the night sky. The more I learn about what is up there the more excited I am. I see your main message as, lets get started. I’m 62 and have had a long relationship with the sky. It doesn’t matter if you are a beginner, or in the middle or at the end, its a great experience. I live in newfoundland canada

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