Dark Sky Star Party
July 27th 2019 at Dexter State Park
Every year we host a dark sky star party at Dexter State Park. Fifteen miles from Eugene, this site is far enough from the city sky glow to allow us to see many of the galaxies, nebulae, and other deep-sky objects that are obscured by light pollution when viewed from town. If you haven't seen a truly dark sky through a telescope before, you're in for a treat. For that matter, even if you have before, you're still in for a treat!
This star party attracts dozens of astronomers with telescopes, some as large as 20 inches in aperture. The view of Saturn, Jupiter, star clusters, nebulae, and distant galaxies is simply stunning. This is a don't-miss opportunity, and it's absolutely free. Just show up at dusk (about 9:00) and join us for a view of some of the universe's greatest hits.
We have an ongoing tradition of giving away telescopes at this star party. This year, we're giving away two telescopes: a 4.5" Orion Starblast and a 6" Orion Skyquest Dobsonian. Both are brand new telescopes with extra eyepieces to make complete observing packages. And bonus: we'll provide free instruction to the lucky winners.
To be eligible for the telescope giveaway, entrants must be between the ages of 8 and 18, inclusive, and they must be present to win.
Dark adaptation is very important at star parties, and white light or bright light of any color destroys night vision. We ask that you don't use white-light flashlights or cell phones or cameras with flash during the star party. If you need a flashlight, we will provide a red-filtered one for you, or we can cover your white light with red filter material. Stop at our information table on your way in for that service. But once you allow your eyes to adapt to the low light level, we think you'll be surprised at how well you can see to get around just by the light of the stars.
Star parties are very informal events. Just wander around the site and inquire what each telescope is looking at. If it's pointed at something you haven't seen yet, get in line and have a look.
If the star party is clouded out, check our website for a rescheduled event.