Joined the AAVSO this evening as a member, even though I've been submitting estimates off-and-on for nearly ten years now.
I joined as, well, I was feeling very sheepish about engaging in the forums with others that are having as much fun as I am without being a member. :D
But it goes beyond that..... the webinar and other videos the AAVSO has done this past summer have clearly showed that observers like myself -- those who do this because observing variable stars visually is just plain fun -- are reassuredly welcome in the organization. Thank you, Stella, Gordon, and Rich.
Rich Roberts presentation back in August about LPVs was perhaps the tipping point to making me want to commit to join.
What made me actually "write the check," as it were? It was a simple act, really. A few days ago Lindsay Ward sent all of us who had attained 100 observations a certificate. It seems at first a small thing, but I recognize the effort that goes into that -- the mail merge, the syncing with the PDF, all of that. Thank you.
Furthermore, I know there are others like me out there readings these words. If you have the discretionary funds, please join up with me. If not now, perhaps later next year. A decade ago, I would have laughed at you if you told me I would be into this. But today, visual -- and especially binocular -- variable star observing lets me have a connection to the night sky from the fourth largest city in the US....on a weeknight!!
It is awesome and so much fun. :)
--Michael in Houston (RMW)
Michael, thank you for your post. Staff and volunteers, we all appreciate hearing what our members value from our programs and how we can serve you all more. Messages like yours give us more energy to work harder to make the AAVSO an organization you are proud to associate with. YOU are the AAVSO!
Thank you for being in our corner!
Best wishes - clear skies,