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Utah Travel Headlines

Wednesday, September 04, 2013

Experience the Night Sky at Dinosaur National Monument

There are few places left in American where the night sky is truly dark. Areas with dark skies located within the US National Park service the feature dark skies are celebrated and protected. One such places is Dinosaur National Monument, located in northeastern Utah and northwestern Colorado.

The Monument will host a night sky event this weekend, Friday, September 6 through Sunday, September 8. Staff at the Monument, along with local astronomers, will offer a variety of programs to help visitors explore and understand the wonders the universe.

The monument provided this news release:
Contact: Dan Johnson, (435) 781-7702
Contact: Sonya Berger, (435) 781-7701

Dinosaur National Monument has some of the darkest night skies in the United States. This darkness allows us to enjoy the stars just as people would have hundreds or even thousands of years ago. From Friday, September 6 through Sunday, September 8, staff at Dinosaur National Monument, along with local astronomers, will offer a variety of programs to help you explore and understand the wonders of our universe. Discover why the skies above the monument are just as important to enjoy and protect as the fossils, stunning scenery, and wild rivers. A variety of programs will be offered both during the day and night. See the activities and times below.

See the Sun
Did your mom ever tell you to never look at the sun? With proper equipment, like our specially designed solar telescopes, feel free to stare as long as you like at sun spots and prominences on the closest star in our sky. Join us on the back patio of the Quarry Visitor Center on Friday, September 6 from noon to 2:00 pm; Saturday, September 7 from noon to 2:00 pm; and Sunday, September 8 from 10:00 am to 2:00 pm.

Meet the Telescopes
Learn how different designs and sizes of telescopes can open your eyes to new worlds at the Quarry Visitor Center back patio on Saturday, September 7 from 3:30 pm to 4:30 pm; and on Sunday, September 8 from 3:30 pm to 4:30 pm.

Be a Junior Astronomer
Explore our solar system and the stars around us though hands-on activities and stories. This program is good for all ages and counts as a Dinosaur Junior Ranger Program. We will meet at the Quarry Exhibit Hall shuttle area on Saturday, September 7; 10:30 am & 2:30 pm and Sunday, September 8; 10:30 am & 2:30 pm.

Also, at any time for any age, you can complete at least three pages (five if you are over 12) in our free Junior Ranger Night Explorer Activity book to earn a Night Explorer badge.

Campground Evening Program
Join a ranger at the Green River Campground campfire circle for a 30-45 minute program that will help you make the most of enjoying the sky once the sun sets. Offered on Friday, September 6 at 7:00 pm and Saturday, September 7 at 7:00 pm

Stories Behind the Stars & Telescope Viewing
A variety of telescopes will be available for you to seek out star clusters, nebula, and other galaxies. Rangers and volunteers will offer naked-eye stargazing programs at 9:00, 9:30 & 10:00 pm. Children must be attended at all times and pets are not allowed in the stargazing area. If you have your own telescope and wish to join us, please contact Sonya Berger 435-781-7701. Meet at the south end of the Split Mountain Campground (look for signs) on Friday, September 6 from 8:30 pm to 10:30 pm and Saturday, September 7 from 8:30 pm to 10:30 pm 

Programs may be added, altered or cancelled due to staffing or weather conditions. Check for updates in person at our visitor centers, call (435) 781-7700, or visit us at Specific topics for Junior Astronomer, Campground Evening Program, and Stories Behind the Stars programs will be posted at the Quarry Visitor Center.


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