"Space isn't remote at all. It's only an hour's drive away if your car could go straight upwards."

– Sir Fred Hoyle


this section of the website is routinely updated to notify everyone of upcoming Events.



  • Open Every Saturday during April through October - The observatory will be open every Saturday starting at about sunset and running for about 2 hours. Individuals and families, just drop in. No cost, but we appreciate donations. If you have a group, please set up a group visit.
  • The next business meeting will be November 5th at the EIOLC beginning at 7:00pm. 
  • The next Public Event is October 10th beginning at 7:30 p.m.  
  • Download a Flyer with all of the 2015 Event dates and times (115 kB pdf)
  • Download a map (276 kB pdf) to Pal-Dows Preserve.
  • A listing of publications and media available in the EIOLC library are on the Documents page.


Welcome to the website of the Cedar Amateur Astronomers, Inc.

Thank you to all who attended our events!

As well as being a member society of the Astronomical League, the CAA is a member of NASA's Night Sky Network, a nationwide coalition of amateur astronomy societies committed to sharing their time, their telescopes, and their enthusiasm for astronomy with their local communities. The CAA hosts public viewing nights during the year and information about those public observing nights can be found on the Events page of the website.

The Society serves its members, the public, local school districts, youth groups, as well as college and university classes. We have also hosted state and regional conventions in Cedar Rapids. Since its founding, the Society's membership has grown from 12 members to over 100. Our members come from all walks of life and with all levels of interest in astronomy.

The Cedar Amateur Astronomers, Inc. was founded on September 29, 1979, and incorporated in 1980. Based in Cedar Rapids, Iowa, the CAA is a tax-exempt, non-profit 501(c)(3) organization. The Eastern Iowa Observatory and Learning Center at Palisades-Dows Preserve is jointly operated by the Cedar Amateur Astronomers and the Linn County Conservation Board. 





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Postal Address
Cedar Amateur Astronomers, Inc.
P.O. Box 10786
Cedar Rapids IA 52410

Society Officers
Vince Vella
Vice President,
Chris Michael
Wendell Clifton 
Carl Bracken



Night Sky Network logo



The Eastern Iowa Observatory and Learning Center at the Palisades-Dows Observatory.
The Eastern Iowa Observatory and Learning Center at the Palisades-Dows Observatory.
The Eastern Iowa Observatory and Learning Center at the Palisades-Dows Observatory. Winter aerial view.