About me the owner

ABOUT THE OWNER

Hi, I’m James

I have been an amateur astronomer since 1983 when I got my first telescope, a Jason 76mm Schmidt/Newtonian table top model, for Christmas.  I fell in love with astronomy and read as many books and astronomy magazines as I could find.  I joined the Everett Astronomical Society in 1991, and began to learn the night sky.  With my new telrad finder and a Bausch and Lomb 4″ SCT, I was able to find anything.  I quickly became President of the Everett Astronomical Society and served for 3 years until I moved to Olympia.

I started a small astronomy business in 1994 with my friend, Bill Borsheim.  We bought and sold new and used products.  I set up the business as a partnership and handled all the ordering and bookkeeping.  Bill and I went to Table Mtn Star Party, Oregon Star Party, and Montana Sky Watch in the first year.  Later, I went to Texas Star Party, Central Texas Star Party, Grand Canyon Star Party and Riverside Telescope Makers Conference to sell our wares.

In 1997, I moved to Arkansas to work with Rex’s Astro Stuff in Russellville.   While working with Rex, we participated in over 30 star parties as well as negotiating conventional retail phone sales.

I went to work for a new company in Washington State, Anacortes Telescope, and moved back in August 1998.  I was with Anacortes Telescope until August 2006 as the only amateur astronomer on the staff and I helped grow the business into one of the bigger astronomy stores in the country.

Aurora Astro Products was born in November 2006, in Everett, WA, when I decided to open my own store.  I did well during first two years realizing 150% growth but when the economy tanked, so did the online and retail business.   I closed my store at end of May 2010 and since that time, [SL1] I authored five telrad finder charts:   The Multiple Deep Sky Objects List by season: Spring, Summer, Fall, and Winter and Off the Beaten Messier Path 110 of brighter NGC Objects. Those are still available and another list is on the way.

I have over 34 years as an amateur astronomer. I can find anything in the night sky and remember what it is.  I also have over 17 years of selling astronomy products so you can trust that you are buying from someone that knows the hobby and will get you what you need.

The store is named after my daughter Aurora “Daddy’s Little Northern Light” – she’s not so little now she is 15.

James Bielaga-owner

13.1″ truss tube dob is my regular scope.