Youth Astronomer Observing Program

Youth Astronomer Observing Program Coordinator:

Maynard Pittendreigh
3208 Little Oak Way
Orlando, Florida 32812
Telephone: 321-400-4312



Perhaps you have completed the Sky Puppies Observing Program.  Perhaps you are new to astronomy.  Either way, you are wondering where to go from here.  The Astronomical League has about 70 different Observing Programs to choose from, but which one will help you unlock the mysteries of the universe?

The first step in the Master Observer Progression, the Observer Award is a suitable way to continue down your observing path.  But maybe you are not ready to jump in with both feet and commit to a single full-scale Observing Program. 

There are three starting points depending on your age:

  • The Sky Puppies Observing Program – for those age 10 and under.
  • The Youth Astronomer Observing Program – for those age 17 and under.
  • The Beyond Polaris Observing Program – for any one of any age.

This Observing Program is for those age 17 years old or younger.  It is designed to let the young astronomer dip their toes into various Observing Programs prior to making the commitment to pursue specific ones.

Requirements and Rules

  • You must be a member of the Astronomical League, either as part of a member society or as a member at large.
  • Make 100 observations of different objects.
    • From 20 different Observing Programs.
    • With 5 observations from each of the Observing Programs that are required and those that you select.
    • Observations must include this information:
      • Observing Program that includes your object.
      • Object Observed.
      • Date and Time (Local or Universal Time).
      • Seeing and Transparency
      • Your Latitude and Longitude
      • A sketch or image of the object.
      • A brief description of what you saw.


The Process

To see step by step details on the process to follow, click here.


Submitting for Certification

COPY of of your observations should be submitted to the Observing Program Coordinator,  An electronic copy in an email is encouraged.  This information must also be provided:

  • Your name
  • Your astronomy club affiliation (or Member at Large)
  • Your mailing address
  • Your email address
  • Your telephone number
  • Whether you want the certificate and pin mailed to you or your club's Award Coordinator and the name and address of that coordinator

Upon verification of your submission and of your active membership in the Astronomical League, your recognition (certificate, pin, etc.) will be sent to you or to the awards coordinator for your society, as you specified.  Your name will also appear in an upcoming issue of the Reflector magazine and in the Astronomical League’s on-line database.  Congratulations.  Good luck with your next observing challenge.


Youth Astronomer Observing Program Coordinator:

Maynard Pittendreigh
3208 Little Oak Way
Orlando, Florida 32812
Telephone: 321-400-4312