Night Sky Festival

The Milky Way Galaxy
Milky Way Galaxy

NPS/Greg Redfern

 

Second Annual Night Sky Festival
Friday, August 18th to Monday, August 21st, 2017

Join Us for a Fabulous Weekend Exploring our Starry Night Skies and the 2017 Solar Eclipse!

Celebrate the valuable resource of dark skies through guest presentations by astronomy experts, Ranger Programs, and viewing the beautiful night skies that Shenandoah National Park protects. The festival will include constellation tours, solar scope viewing, telescope viewing, Junior Ranger programs, audio-visual presentations, hands-on activities, and will culminate in viewing the 2017 Solar Eclipse! Activities take place in a variety of locations throughout the Park.

Night Sky Junior Ranger Explorer books are available for free throughout the weekend and can be picked up at Park visitor centers.

Featured Events

Friday, August 18th at 4:00 pm
James Webb Space Telescope: NASA's Successor to Hubble Space Telescope

Join NASA Jet Propulsion Laboratory Solar System Ambassador Greg Redfern for this engaging presentation about the 2018 space telescope successor to Hubble Space Telescope. Get up close and personal with the latest pictures and information direct from NASA. Byrd Visitor Center Auditorium (mile 51), 45 minutes

Saturday, August 19th at 5:00 pm
Evening Ranger Talk: The Last Frontier

We have come a long way since John Lederer became the first European to document his discoveries west of the Blue Ridge Mountains. Today we set our eyes on space. Come learn about recent discoveries and how we can all play a role in protecting our night skies. Dickey Ridge Visitor Center auditorium (mile 4.6), 45 minutes

Saturday, August 19th at 8:30 pm
Big Meadows Evening Program: The Lives of Stars

Join NASA Jet Propulsion Laboratory Solar System Ambassador Greg Redfern for this engaging presentation about how the stars, including our Sun, shine. Explore how stars are born, live, and ultimately, die. You’ll never look at the stars the same after you learn their secrets. Dress for cool mountain nights. Big Meadows Amphitheater, in the picnic grounds (mile 51), 45 minutes, [Rain location: Byrd Visitor Center, mile 51]

Sunday, August 20th at 8:30 pm
Big Meadows Evening Program: Stories in the Stars

Discover the value of preserving dark skies as you take a constellation tour highlighting stories with some surprising modern connections. Dress for cool mountain nights. Big Meadows Amphitheater, in the picnic grounds (mile 51), 45 minutes
 

Stargazing

Friday, August 18th and Saturday, August 19th at 9:30 pm
Under the Stars at Shenandoah National Park

Join us for stargazing and constellation tours. Meet inside Rapidan Fire Road gate (mile 51), 1 hour

Sunday, August 20th at 9:30 pm
Under the Stars at Shenandoah National Park

Join us for stargazing and constellation tours. Dickey Ridge Visitor Center (mile 4.6), 1 hour

 

Monday, August 21st, 2017
The Solar Eclipse

On August 21st, 2017, a solar eclipse will cross the continental United States. This event last happened in 1979! While Shenandoah National Park will only experience 80-85% coverage of the sun at approximately 2:40 pm, and will not experience a total eclipse, it is still a great place to join a Ranger to learn about why a solar eclipse happens, what to expect, and how to view it safely. Dickey Ridge Visitor Center (mile 4.6) AND Byrd Visitor Center (mile 51)

Learn more about the 2017 solar eclipse and discover which national parks are in the path of totality.

 

To Learn More about Astronomy Here at Shenandoah


The Shenandoah National Park Association (SNPA) features a full range of astronomy and night sky related products. Visit the Park bookstores located in the Dickey Ridge and Byrd Visitor Centers or visit the SNPA website at http://www.snpbooks.org. All proceeds support the Park. Park bookstores are open until 6 PM on Friday and Saturday and 5 PM on Sunday and Monday.

Delaware North at Shenandoah National Park also offers a variety of stargazing and night sky opportunities. For information on other astronomy events, see http://www.goshenandoah.com/activities-events/astronomy.


 

Spot the Station from Shenandoah

Last updated: August 13, 2017

Contact the Park

Mailing Address:

Shenandoah National Park
3655 U.S. Highway 211 East

Luray, VA 22835

Phone:

(540) 999-3500

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