Archive for the ‘Current Events’ Category


Sunday, June 19th, 2011

Right now, the team is working on the inaugural edition of the Almanac of Information, which will be published later this fall.
In the meantime, we’ve transported all of the old blog articles and various postings archived through the years to the Almanac’s new Journal section. The Regular Journal of the Almanac of Information will feature regular postings, including Items of Interest and Current Events.
In the next month we’ll be providing information on how to subscribe to the annual print publication.
Certain portions of Ross’s Almanac of Information may be posted on this site from time to time. The links will be noted below and announced in the Regular Journal.


Kirk M. Ross
Chapel Hill, NC

Fire in the Alligator River National Wildlife Refuge

Tuesday, May 10th, 2011

Update: Video Link appears to be gone.

Raw video via the Virgina Pilot of the wildfire in the Alligator River National Wildlife Refuge.
So far the fire has consumed more than 20,000 acres

Speech by Benjamin Chavis in Chapel Hill — January 2011

Friday, January 21st, 2011

Excerpt of a speech by Rev. Benjamin Chavis at the NAACP-sponsored Martin Luther King, Jr. Day service at First Baptist Church on Roberson Street in Chapel Hill on January 17, 2011.

Wiki page. More information. Story in The Citizen

In the sky this week

Thursday, January 6th, 2011

Sorry to be a little late with this.
Here’s the week ahead via the USNO, where the magic word for the week is perihelion:

This week also marks another milestone in our annual journey around the Sun. On January 3rd we reached perihelion, Earth’s closest point to Old Sol for the year. Our day-star’s center was a mere 147.1 million kilometers (91.4 million miles) from the center of Earth. This means that we are moving at our most rapid orbital velocity around Old Sol, which also means that winter is thus our shortest season in the Northern Hemisphere! Take heart, summer lovers.

And a little more about Venus from S&T:

In the coming weeks and months Venus will grow thickly gibbous while shrinking in apparent diameter; it’s pulling far ahead of Earth in its faster orbit and is beginning to swing around to the far side of the Sun.

(Note that the S&K link is not a permalink.)

Census data just released

Tuesday, December 21st, 2010

The sky this week: Frost Moon, Snow Moon, Beaver Moon

Thursday, November 18th, 2010

Full Moon occurs on the 21st at 12:27 pm Eastern Standard Time.
Here’s the rundown from the Navy:

The nights now are approaching their longest spans of the year, and winter’s constellations are now gaining prominence in the evening sky. Despite the bright illumination of the Moon, by 10:00 pm the striding figure of Orion is climbing into the eastern sky, surrounded by the other bright stars of the Great Winter Circle. As the nights become longer and chillier, it only seems natural that nine of the 25 brightest stars in the sky become prominent as the midnight hour approaches.

Backyard at the season change

Thursday, November 4th, 2010

Photographed October 30, 2010, Chapel Hill, North Carolina

Tar balls in N.C.

Friday, May 21st, 2010

A least some of BP’s massive oil leak in the Gulf is expected to enter the Gulf Loop and head up the East Coast, but officials investigating a clump of tar balls that washed up on Caswell Beach this week are saying they do not suspect its from the BP leak.

Brunswick Today: Coast Guard Checking the Beach for Tar Balls


Thursday, December 21st, 2006

7:22 p.m.  Eastern Standard Time
Spring is just around the corner.
From the Naval Observatory:

The Sun reaches his southernmost excursion among the stars on the 21st at 7:22 pm EST. At this moment the center of Old Sol’s disc stands directly above the Tropic of Capricorn about 650 miles (1000 kilometers) south of Pago-Pago in the South Pacific Ocean. The Sun will seem to hover at this latitude for a time, then gradually begin its inexorable northward trek toward the summer solstice half a year from now. Even though we experienced the year’s earliest sunset on the night of the 7th, the latest sunrise won’t occur until the first week of January. If we measure the length of time between sunrise and sunset on the 21st, we would indeed find it to be the year’s shortest day, with the Sun above the horizon for a mere 9 hours 26 minutes here in Washington. Alert skywatchers may have already noticed that sunset is starting to occur later than it did back on the 7th. On the solstice itself the Sun will set four minutes later than it did two weeks ago.

More at the Royal Observatory, Greennwich 

Dark night at the fair

Wednesday, October 18th, 2006


Not much was open. The rides were shut down. Some booths had lights on, but nobody was home. We walked through the cattle and goat buildings, where exhibitors were gathered around talking and grooming and shoveling. Saw the giant pumpkin, the unusual vegetables and all kinds of honey. Ate a barbecue sandwich in one of the few places that was open and went home. Click here or on the pic for a short film.