Squeeze the most you can out of the summer by looking to the skies.
There is beautiful stargazing year-round in Colorado, but it sure doesn’t hurt when the weather outside is just as majestic. Late summer and fall is a wonderful time to get out there and enjoy the heavens. We’ve got you covered with a few events coming up in the next month to soothe the stargazer within. And in case this is your first time attending a star party or gazing gathering, check out these etiquette tips from the Colorado Springs Astronomical Society so you can fully enjoy the experience.
Star Parties - Colorado Springs Astronomical Society
Each month the Colorado Springs Astronomical Society sets up telescopes in local parks to share the night skies with the community. These parties ensure that beginning astronomers won’t miss a sight to behold!
Where: Mueller State Park Visitor Center, 21045 Hwy. 67 South, Divide
When: Sept. 1, 8-10 p.m.
Where: Bear Creek Regional Park Eastern Gardens, 2002 Creek Crossing St., Colorado Springs
When: Sept. 22, 8-11 p.m.
Where: Space Foundation Family Star Party, 4425 Arrowswest Dr., Colorado Springs
When: Wednesday, Sept. 26, 7-9 PM
Cost: Open to the public and free
Ales and Astronomy - Copper Mountain Resort
This 21-and-up event marries two favorite pastimes: sipping beer and stargazing. Hosted by REI, you will enjoy adult beverages at a private venue while experts will guide you through the ins and outs of the skies.
Where: REI Adventure Station, Center Village, Copper Mountain Resort, 509 Copper Rd., Frisco
When: Sept. 1 and Sept. 7, 7:30-11 p.m.
Cost: $99 for REI members, $119 for non-members
More Info and Tickets
Stay up with the Stars - Denver Museum of Nature & Science
Families will love to stay up late and with museum educators and an astrophysicist or two, as they walk you through the incredible Colorado night sky. Enjoy dinner, watch planetarium shows, see fall constellations through high-power telescopes (weather permitting), and make star-studded crafts.
Where: Denver Museum of Nature & Science, 2001 Colorado Blvd., Denver
When: Sept. 6, 6- 9 p.m.
Cost: $20 adult, $15 child (members); $25 adult, $20 child (nonmembers)
More info and tickets
Amateur Astronomy Night - Great Sand Dunes
Take a road trip to the Great Sand Dunes and enjoy both the park at night (which is an experience in itself!) and unspoiled, bright starlight. Bring your own telescope for the best views or simply enjoy gazing with your eyes. And don't forget, the San Luis Valley is considered a UFO hotspot. Is the truth out there?
Where: Great Sand Dunes National Park and Preserve, 11999 State Highway 150
When: Sept. 8, 8:30 p.m.
Cost: $20 per vehicle for park entry
Public Star Party: The Milky Way - Smokey Jack Observatory, Westcliffe
It’s hard to see stars with city lights shining like a beacon in the night. Westcliffe, about an hour west of Pueblo, was among the first communities in Colorado to be designated as a dark-sky city by the International Dark-Sky Association. You can enjoy a full view of the night sky at the Smokey Jack Observatory’s public star-viewing events.
Where: Smokey Jack Observatory, 100 South Adams Boulevard, Westcliffe
When: Sept. 14, 8-11 p.m.
Cost: Free and open to the public
The telescope at the Chamberlin Observatory. Courtesy of Chamberlin Observatory (Facebook).
Year-Round Star Gazing: Public Nights -DU's Historic Chamberlin Observatory
If you can’t make it to the events in September, not to worry. There’s much to see in the clear, crisp winter skies. If you’d like to stay warm and still witness all the astronomical glory, observatories are for you!
On Tuesdays and Thursdays throughout the year, you can participate in a 120-year-old tradition. Public Nights are a Denver tradition that began on the night of August 1, 1894. The Denver Astronomical Society hosts the nights at the observatory to educate, entertain, and enlighten all ages. They are very popular, so try to get tickets very early.
Where: Chamberlin Observatory, 2930 E Warren Ave., Denver
When: Tuesdays and Thursdays (subject to change)
Cost: $3 for children, $4 for adults
More info and tickets
Are there other stargazing events happening near you? Share them with us in the comments below.