About BPAA

Mission: BPAA’s mission is to increase public engagement in supporting the role of science and technology in our society by offering programs and services in astronomy, cosmology and space exploration to the general public, regional (PNW) educational institutions and researchers.

What We Offer:
– Educational classes and lectures
– Star Parties
– “Hands on” with telescopes
– Virtual Reality-based Astronomy
– Access to Ritchie Telescope


The Battle Point Astronomical Association (BPAA) is a non-profit corporation founded in 1992.  The BPAA’s Ritchie Observatory houses the 27-inch Ritchie Telescope, the largest telescope accessible to the public in the Pacific Northwest. The Ritchie Observatory was constructed from the shell of the Helix Building, a World War II relic that in 1992 was scheduled for demolition and removal by the Bainbridge Island Parks Department. Thanks to the vision of the founders of the Battle Point Astronomical Association, that demolition never took place; instead, through private volunteer community efforts an Observatory was created. The basic construction was completed in 1997 and supports a 27-inch telescope, planetarium, workshop, library, and meeting room. 

Check out these awesome virtual flyovers by Craig Hagstrom of the Bainbridge Amateur Radio Club.

A CGI depiction of the Naval antenna farm on Bainbridge Island in WWII, superimposed on the current park on that site. This video demonstrates the concept, but it’s not ready for prime time. Movements are jagged in some cases, and lighting is not optimal.
The Navy radio transmitter station on Bainbridge Island during and shortly after WWII. Still missing a lot of information, but getting better. Starting to fill in buildings.