Endorsed by Curators:
UPDATE 1/13: The only rooms left at Edgefield are the mens and womens Hostile rooms for $35 and there are private lockers in the rooms, but there are rooms in some very nearby hotels still available.
Don't ask me how this is possible, but I didn't know that one of the LIGO gravitational wave detectors sits nearly in our own back yard in Hanford, Washington! I was watching physicist Jim Al-Khalili's new 2 part series on gravity on Curiosity Stream and he brought up LIGO and I decided to visit the LIGO web page for fun, and it's like OMG Are you kidding me? LIGO sits only 5 hours away from Bend and they give tours! And now here I am, thinking how to put this together. There are two tours on the 2nd Saturday of each month. One is from 1:30-2:45, and the second is 3:30-4:45, with a 3:00-3:30 presentation in between. The tours include the control room, where we can ask questions, so it should be amazing. For those that are not familiar, LIGO is the device that made the news recently by detecting warps in spacetime (gravitational waves) from first the collision of two black holes, then just a few weeks later from the collision of two neutron stars. Gravity waves stretch and bend your body and change your weight and the rate at which you age as they pass through you, so they are one of the most bizarre things in nature. My initial idea is to meet at 7:30 or so somewhere and carpool to LIGO for the 1:30 tour. Then afterwards drive out to Troutdale and party at the Edgefield McMenamins including some soaking in their awesome heated outdoor soaking moat. It's about a 3 hour drive from Hanford to McMinnys so we should be getting there by 7 or so. If you haven't been there it's amazing, with 7 bars, an herb garden, a spacious plantation , a large statue of Gerry Garcia, and to top it off, one of my very favorite solo artists, the ultra talented Ian Moore will be performing that night. Last time I saw him at the Father Luke room he got a well deserved standing ovation. I have never seen such a hypnotizing performance.
As of today, Edgefield has rooms available that night for $140, as well as men's and woman's hostile rooms where beds are $35. So what I need from you....First, if you want to go to LIGO, even if you don't want to stay in Troutdale, then RSVP right away. You can change your mind later by un-RSVPing before showtime. This way we can figure out transportation. Next, send me a PM through the meetup or just post below your intention to either go or not go to Edgefield for the party/soak/music/fun. And that's it. We'll figure out more as we get closer. WHO SAYS SCIENCE GEEKS CAN'T HAVE FUN!!!
What to bring
Important to know