Watch the ‘Great’ Conjunction of Jupiter and Saturn tonight!
The Winter Solstice brings a rare sight to the night skies. Jupiter and Saturn will appear closer to each other on Dec. 21 than they have been since the Middle Ages. Called a conjunction, the alignment between Jupiter and Saturn is rare indeed, occurring about every 20 years but usually too near the sun to be seen from Earth, as it was in 2000. The last time Jupiter and Saturn came this close to each other was 1623, but that conjunction was also too near the sun to be seen by Earthlings. So, 1226 is actually the most recent time such a close conjunction of Jupiter and Saturn was visible to humans. Tonight, even though hundreds of millions of miles apart, the planets will look like one.
Can you see this rare occurrence from Oakmont’s Valley of the Moon? Yes, if you gaze into the southwestern horizon just after sunset, the two gas giants will look like neighboring points of light and be visible through Dec. 25. Here’s what NASA recommends for the best viewing:
- Find a spot with an unobstructed view of the sky, such as a field or park. Jupiter and Saturn are bright, so they can be seen even from most cities.
- An hour after sunset, look to the southwestern sky. Jupiter will look like a bright star and be easily visible. Saturn will be slightly fainter and will appear slightly above and to the left of Jupiter until Dec. 21, when Jupiter will overtake it; and they will reverse positions in the sky.
- The planets can be seen with the unaided eye; but if you have binoculars or a small telescope, you may be able to see Jupiter’s four large moons orbiting the giant planet.
Board Election Update
It’s Nomination Time
OVA members who want to run for election to the Board of Directors must submit letters of intent to Dawn McFarland by Jan. 29. Interested members must be in good standing and not be felons and not served more than two terms in sequence. Candidates cannot be from the same household. Email letters to firstname.lastname@example.org.
In last week’s e-blast, it was incorrectly stated that there are six openings. There are five.
Sonoma County Reaffirms Stay-Home Order
SANTA ROSA, CA – Although the 11-county Bay Area region Wednesday was placed under a mandatory Stay-Home Order that will take effect on Dec. 17, Sonoma County health officials are reminding local residents and visitors that a Stay-Home order has been in effect here since Dec. 12. The local order took effect 32 hours after Sonoma County joined six other Bay Area counties and the city of Berkeley last week in proactively implementing the state’s Stay-Home order due to rising COVID-19 case numbers and hospitalizations..
Central Pool Closed 12/21
The Central Pool is closed for stool sterilization. We are following SCHD and NSPF guidelines for disinfecting. We currently expect to reopen at the normal time tomorrow, Tuesday, December 22.
All Pools Closed Beginning Christmas Eve & Through Christmas Day
All pools will be closed beginning December 24 at 4:30 p.m.
and through Dec. 25.
Clubs News & Online Events
It is only one vehicle, but it is delightful. Annually Oakmont Community Church members drive through the neighborhood with lights and music. In years past, it was a one-night, three-hour event. This year it will be two nights and one car will be out for approximately 2 hours. Look for it driving past your home on Monday night Dec. 21 and/or Tuesday night Dec. 22. The Oakmont Community Church Christmas Eve service will be at 5 p.m. on youtube (for link go to occsantarosa.org) or listen to the service on the low-band radio at 88.7 FM (limited locations). There is no parking lot Christmas Eve service this year.
The Oakmont Village Library with its over 100 volunteers wishes you and yours a safe and happy holiday. It’s been a difficult year but we have hope for the new year. Until it is safe for us to reopen, the library remains closed and unable to receive materials. Please continue to keep our books safe at your home until we can welcome both you and the books back. We encourage you to continue reading – reread old favorites, take advantage of the curbside pickup or online options at the Sonoma Public Library which also remains closed or consider exchanging books with a friend. Snuggle up with a good book and transport yourself to another world.
Pickle ball Play Restricted
Effective immediately, pickleball play is restricted to singles play only. It appears that this is the only restriction in the California “Regional Stay at Home Order” that affects OVA facilities. Residents are reminded that masks and social- distancing requirements continue.
The Community Educational and Transparency Committee (CETC) Brings Back Fireside Chats
Tuesday, Jan. 5, 1 P.M.
Perhaps you are feeling isolated after so many months of COVID or missing shared activities and special events in our facilities. Join with a small group (12) of your neighbors for a community conversation on what is on your mind and in your heart regarding living today and tomorrow in Oakmont. The hour-long conversation will be facilitated in a respectful, welcoming environment.
Because CETC is a Board committee, participants’ ideas and concerns will be shared with the Board members as a way for them to better understand what the pulse of the community is as 2021 takes off. This will be conducted in a confidential manner that respects the privacy of all attendees.
This Fireside Chat will be limited to the first 12 residents who make a reservation. Do so by leaving your name and phone number in an email to
Confirmation will be an email containing the Zoom link to the Fireside Chat on Tuesday, Jan. 5 at 1 P.M.
Free OHI Fitness Classes Continue on Zoom December 23, 9 a.m. – prerecorded session
Please go to the OHI weblink for access: https://oakmontvillage.com/article/ohi-class. Zoomed classes will resume live on Monday and Wednesday during the week of Dec. 28. JoRenee wishes you a healthy holiday.
Just For Fun Games Club
February 6, 1 p.m.
The Just for Fun Games Club will host Zoom Bingo on February 6 at 1 p.m. Plan to log onto Zoom 10-15 minutes early to get the bugs worked out and be ready to play.
Register to play by sending an email to: Just4FunGamesClub@earthlink.net. Include your name, email address and telephone number. (If you don’t use email, you may call or text Jeri Phillips at (714) 883-3126 to register.) We will then send you a link to print out your Bingo cards and the Zoom link to play.
If your club has an activity that you would like to have considered for notice in the e-blast, go to oakmontvillage.com/submit and follow the instructions on the screen.