Last week, in one of the most densely populated areas of the United States, thousands of people lined up in a queue, blocking traffic, to have the opportunity to look at Saturn through an amateur telescope.
Amateur astronomer Joe Delfausse, who resides in Brooklyn, has become a local celebrity due to his habit of setting up his telescope on the street on clear nights, allowing anyone passing by to take a glimpse at the sky.
A recent video of this event went viral on social media. It shows a massive line of people waiting to view Saturn through the telescope. It’s an incredibly striking illustration of our boundless fascination with what lies beyond our blue planet.
This man who placed his telescope in the middle of a Brooklyn road to show strangers what Saturn looks like has done more for traffic calming than any elected official in the lower 48. Let’s protect this man at all costs. pic.twitter.com/sbYC8nqBRj— Hayden Clarkin (@the_transit_guy) August 24, 2023
According to the accounts of those who decided to stop and see Saturn with their own eyes, it was an incredible experience. In a modern world filled with various distractions, amusements, worries, and obligations, we rarely take the time to look up at the sky.
“He was like a spiritual guide to space, leading a group of young people just out of a concert. Seeing the telescope, the youth lined up to gaze into space. The line even stopped the flow of cars,” a local musician Daphne Juliette Ellis shares, having captured this scene on video. Her video went viral on TikTok and has been viewed over 4 million times.
Delfausse fell in love with astronomy back in 1995 when he joined a local group of amateur astronomers in New York.
“The main thing I do is bring out my telescope where I know there are going to be people, so I can show them the heavens. When people look through the telescope, they are all equally enchanted. I’m in my 80s, and you want to do something meaningful in your life,” Delfausse said. “I can’t think of anything that’s more meaningful than this kind of stargazing with people,” he said in an interview with The Guardian.
Previously, we reported on how an amateur astronomer made a remarkable discovery.