Contact the club

Email the River Bend Astronomy Club


Elected Officers

President: Jeff Menz

Vice-President: Joe Lopinot

Treasurer: Mike Veith

Secretary: Mary Hebert


Volunteer Administrators

WebMaster: Dan Brandon

League Correspondent: Rich Dietz

Outreach Coordinator: Terry Menz

Librarian: Rita Breeden


Founding Members

Ed Cunnius, Gary Kronk, Kurt Sleeter, and Eric Young


 A Little About Us

Our Mission

The River Bend Astronomy Club serves amateur astronomers from Southern Illinois and the St. Louis Metropolitan area,  and beyond, fostering observation, education and a spirit of camaraderie.

Observation: We encourage people of all ages and interest levels to look at the natural world. Sky watching uplifts the head and the mind, spurs greater personal awareness and deepens a sense of interconnectedness with the cosmos. Members use telescopes—sometimes connected to computers and imaging equipment—or binoculars and even their unaided eyes when making observations. Recording these perceptions through note-taking, drawing or photography can freeze a moment in time, can create meaningful data to share with others, and in some cases can serve as the basis for scientific inquiry.

Education: The club educates its members and others, especially young people, through an ongoing series of informal discussions, special presentations and public events. We strive to build a greater awareness of the wonders of space as well as a better understanding of the science of astronomy. There are no small questions in a vast universe.

Camaraderie: And last, but not least, we aim to have a good time. Astronomy is not just a solitary, noble pursuit; it’s also great fun and a wonder-full way to bring people together. If you’re gonna do it in the dark, why go it alone? Since earliest times, humans living in this part of North America have shared the sky, emerging from the shelter of bluffside caves to marvel at the sky’s beauty and ponder its mystery. Today, at the dawn of the 21st century, a friend’s encouragement helps draw us out of our insulated homes to stand in frigid cold or battle swarms of mosquitoes to experience sometimes ephemeral celestial delights. After all, the universe is expanding even faster than our waist lines: The best way to keep up is to exercise our sense of wonder.

Media Relations: The River Bend Astronomy Club promotes astronomical observation and education in the greater St. Louis, MO, metropolitan area, particularly east of the Mississippi River in southwestern Illinois. We are working to build relationships with editors, reporters, and science writers throughout the region. Club members are available to provide informed comment on astronomy and may be able to supply images and information for publication. Members of the media are welcome to attend our meetings and public events.