Green Laser Pointers for locating Eps Aur
I think that using a green laser pointer on a clear dark sky will be a great way to point out Eps Aur and the comp stars, along with the entire constellation of Auriga. However, we must teach about the safe use of laser pointers. I use laser poiinters in the classroom and under the sky at astronomy presentations at Riverwoods Field Lab. I am always VERY nervous when a student wants to borrow the green laser pointer and use it on the sky. I really give a strong lecture about not shining it at people, or at people's eye's, or even at airplanes.
A daytime case in point: The other day I was watching a ballgame on TV, the Phillies and the Cardinals. All of a sudden there was a green point of laser light on the batter, flashing on his uniform and face. He was very distracted. The umpire called time out, and went over to the dugout and got the manager out, then called security guards from all around, to try to find the fan who was zapping the batter with a green laser pointer. The game was held up for a good 15 minutes. And that was in daytime. Think what the laser can do at night.
So, at the conference, let's suggest the use of green laser pointers, but really stress the importance of safety and respect of other people.