Have a starry, starry night at Hurricane Ridge — and a 'star party' Saturday

PORT ANGELES — Visitors can join a special “star party” at Hurricane Ridge on Saturday night.

Multiple telescopes and astronomers will be available to help park visitors see objects in the night sky.

If the weather allows, the event will start at 9:30 p.m. outside the Ridge's visitor center, 17 miles up Hurricane Ridge Road from Port Angeles in Olympic National Park.

If the sky remains clear, the event will last until at least midnight.

The star gazing will be coordinated by John Goar and other members of the Olympic Astronomical Society.

Park admission

The “star party” is free with park admission, $15 per vehicle and good for seven days.

Saturday night's event is part of a free astronomy program with telescopes that began earlier this summer and continues nightly through next week at the Ridge, one of the best light-restricted “dark sky” sites on the North Olympic Peninsula.

Led by Goar, the nightly stars-and-planets programs begin at the visitor center at 9:30 p.m. and last about an hour.

They run every night before winding up Friday night, Aug. 29.

With participants sharing use of the telescopes, Goar shows the planet Saturn and its moons, other planets and stars, globular star cluster M13, the Ring Nebula and the Andromeda Galaxy.

But if skies are cloudy, Goar's nightly programs are canceled.

For program status, phone the Hurricane Ridge Road hotline at 360-565-3131 after 4 p.m. the day of the program.

“Dress warmly,” said Goar, noting that the visitor center is situated at 5,242 feet.

For more information, visit www.olympictelescope.com.

Last modified: August 21. 2014 10:28PM
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