This week, a crowd gathered in one of the most densely populated places in the United States to view Saturn via a telescope, even causing a traffic jam. Here’s what happened.
Man Sets Up Telescope In The Middle Of NYC Street So Everyone Can See What Saturn Looks Like
Joe Delfausse, an amateur astronomer from Park Slope, Brooklyn, has made it a routine to carry his telescope out into the streets on clear evenings so that everyone passing by might take a look.
A new viral video shows a big crowd waiting in line to peer through Delfausse’s telescope, in a wholesome and beautiful illustration of our never-ending wonder at what lies beyond our Blue Planet.
This man who placed his telescope in the middle of a Brooklyn road to show strangers what Saturn looks like has done more for traffic calming than any elected official in the lower 48. Let’s protect this man at all costs. pic.twitter.com/sbYC8nqBRj
— Hayden Clarkin (@the_transit_guy) August 24, 2023
And, based on the tales of people who went there to have a look, it was quite the occasion.
“He was really this kind of Zen Buddha in the space, shepherding a bunch of hippie kids who had just gotten out of a concert,” said Daphne Juliet Ellis, a local singer who recorded the event for The Guardian. Her TikTok video has been seen over four million times.
The man was happy to share his telescope
“I’m in my 80s, and you want to do something meaningful with your life,” remarked Delfausse. “I can’t think of anything more meaningful than stargazing with other people.”
Delfausse has been fascinated by astronomy since attending a non-profit Amateur Astronomers Association of New York meeting in 1995.
“The main thing I do is bring out my telescope where I know there are going to be people, so I can show them the heavens,” he told The Guardian.
“You don’t need a college degree or anything to see Saturn and those rings,” he continued. “When you look through a telescope, everyone looks the same.”
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