2015 Grand Canyon Star Party
Tyler Nordgren, University of Redlands.
Star Party June 13–20, 2015
Due to its dark skies and clean air, Grand Canyon offers one of the best night sky observing sites in the United States.For eight days in June, park visitors explore the wonders of the night sky on Grand Canyon National Park's South Rim with the Tucson Amateur Astronomy Association and on the North Rim with the Saguaro Astronomy Club of Phoenix.
Amateur astronomers from across the country volunteer their expertise and offer free nightly astronomy programs and telescope viewing.
Visitors view the planet Saturn along with star clusters, galaxies, and nebulae by night; and the sun, Venus, or Mercury by day or just after sundown.
Experience spectacular views of the universe!
Dress warmly, temperatures drop quickly after sunset—even during summer months.
Events include a slide show nightly at 8 pm, followed by telescope viewing behind Grand Canyon Visitor Center. Park rangers offer constellation tours at 9, 9:30, and 10 pm.
The slide show, constellation tours, and at least one telescope are wheelchair accessible. Park in lot 4 for closest parking. Parking lots 1 through 3 offer additional parking but further away. The Village Route (blue) shuttle bus runs every half-hour until 10:30 pm. To make sure you get a seat at the slide show, arrive a few minutes early.
On the North Rim
Find telescopes on the lodge porch every evening; daytime scopes may be available. Visitor center bulletin boards list additional events such as star talks and slide show programs in the Grand Canyon Lodge auditorium.
Bring a flashlight
Make your way safely: use a red flashlight since event organizers discourage white ligths on the telescope lot. Make a red flashlight by covering any flashlight with red cellophane or painting the lens with red nail polish or a red magic marker. For more on why red flashlights are helpful, click here. Although many telescopes come down after 11 pm, on nights with clear, calm skies some astronomers continue sharing their telescopes into the night.
The event is free (other than paying the park entrance fee of $25 per vehicle, good for 7 days of coming and going to either rim.) No reservations needed except for astronomers wishing to share their telescopes, who register through the astronomy clubs sponsoring the event. Come for a night, or for the whole event. Explore Grand Canyon by day and the universe by night!
Experience the mystery and wonder of Grand Canyon National Park's night sky in Episode 4 of the Grand Canyon in Depth Video Series,"Night Sky."
National parks protect some of the last remaining dark skies in this country.
The National Park Service embraces night skies as one of the many scenic vistas to preserve.
Learn more: http://www.nature.nps.gov/night/
Grand Canyon Star Party Dates Through 2020
June 13-20, 2015