Southwest Astronomy Festival

September 10, 2021

10:00 am

11:00 pm

Cedar Breaks National Monument (435) 986-7120

Southwest Astronomy Festival

Stargazing at Cedar Breaks National Monument (Photo by Mike Saemisch)

Annual Southwest Astronomy Festival will feature virtual and in-person programs and activities in Washington and Iron counties during the day and night throughout the weekend. Visitors will have the opportunity to participate in lectures, star parties, an open house at the Ashcroft Observatory, traditional storytelling, a portable planetarium, solar viewing, night sky photography workshops, and more. All programs are free and open to the public and will highlight the amazing dark night sky in and around the national monuments in Southwestern Utah and northern Arizona. For a complete listing of the locations, times, and more details, please visit www.nps.gov/cebr/planyourvisit/swaf-21.htm

The festival will feature many programs and activities presented by Grand Canyon – Parashant and Cedar Breaks National Monuments.

 

Friday, September 10th
Joyce Van Dyke: The Women Who Mapped the Stars (Virtual)
Description: The Women Who Mapped the Stars is the story of the pathbreaking achievements of five women astronomers who worked a century ago at the Harvard College Observatory. The play was commissioned and first produced in 2018 by Central Square Theater. Now adapted into a 50-minute version for schools, it will begin touring in Maine in 2022. Joyce Van Dyke’s plays put women center stage in stories about science and political conflict, and her work has received numerous commissions, productions, and awards. She is a MacDowell Colony Fellow and a Huntington Theatre Playwriting Fellow and teaches playwriting and Shakespeare at Harvard Extension School. For more information, please visit www.joycevandyke.com.

Location: Online event. Zoom Link
Time: 4:00 pm – 5:00 pm

 

Star Party Ashcroft Observatory, Cedar City
Description: At the Ashcroft Observatory, we will be observing a number of highlights in the Milky Way including the Lagoon Nebula and the Double cluster. The two largest planets of the Solar System, Jupiter and Saturn, will also be up, and Saturn’s ring will dazzle in the eyepiece. Additionally, the Moon will be in an attractive crescent phase that will be very favorable for viewing. The Ashcroft Observatory is located just off Westview drive near the SUU farm.

Location: SUU’s Ashcroft Observatory, 745 S Hillcrest Dr, Cedar City, UT 84720
Time: 8:00 pm

 

Traditional Stories of the Night Sky with Daniel Bulletts
Description: Daniel Bulletts, Tribal member of the Kaibab Band of Paiute Indians, will be sharing the Southern Paiute perspective of our traditional and cultural interaction with the night sky which includes songs and short stories. He is the Tribal Cultural Resource Director and in 2015 helped the Kaibab Band of Paiute Indians to become the first tribal nation to be dark sky certified though the International Dark Sky Association.

Location: Cedar Breaks Picnic Pavilion
Time: 8:15 pm

 

Cedar Breaks Star Party
Description: Come join us for talks about the night sky, a Grand Tour of the outer planets, and what makes Cedar Breaks so special for stargazing. The talks will be followed by a telescopic view of the outer planets, a constellation tour, and deep-sky objects viewing.

Location: Cedar Breaks NM, North View Overlook
Time: 9:15 pm

 

Saturday, September 11th
Astronomy for Kids: Explore the Skies
Description: Join the Cedar City Library, SUU STEM Center, and Ashcroft Observatory staff in exploring the night sky through a portable planetarium, astronomy activities, and storytelling.

Location: Cedar City Library
Time: 1:00 pm – 3:00 pm

 

Family Day at Southern Utah Museum of Art (SUMA)
Description: This month’s Second Saturday at SUMA is all about celestial bodies. Come learn about the science of sun prints and the stories of constellations while creating pieces of art you can take home. Chalk artists will be creating astronomical art on the museum plaza. Free and open to the public.

Location: Cedar City, SUMA, 13 S 300 W, Cedar City
Time: 2:00 pm – 4:00 pm

 

Star Party at the Ashcroft Observatory
Description: At the Ashcroft Observatory, we will be observing a number of highlights in the Milky Way including the Lagoon Nebula and the Double cluster. The two largest planets of the Solar System, Jupiter and Saturn, will also be up, and Saturn’s ring will dazzle in the eyepiece. Additionally, the moon will be in an attractive crescent phase that will be very favorable for viewing. The Ashcroft Observatory is located just off Westview drive near the SUU farm.

Location: SUU’s Ashcroft Observatory, 745 S Hillcrest Dr, Cedar City, UT 84720
Time: 8:00 pm

 

Astrophotography with SUMA
Description: Registration required, please email experiencesuma@suu.edu for more information. In partnership with the Cedar Breaks Astronomy Festival, SUMA is proud to present an astrophotography art adventure! Travel up to Cedar Breaks with us to learn about the night sky at one of the top dark sky viewing points in the nation!

Location: Point Supreme Campground
Time: 8:00 pm

 

Cedar Breaks Star Party with Special Guest Dr. Candice Hansen
Description: Come join us for a Grand Tour of the outer planets with special guest Dr. Candice Hansen-Koharcheck. Her job title on Voyager was “Imaging Team Experiment Representative”. One of her many responsibilities was to design all the images the Voyager mission took of the moons of Jupiter, Saturn, Uranus, and Neptune. She is a senior scientist at the Planetary Science Institute and works on NASA un-crewed (robotic) spacecraft missions. Candice has a Ph.D. in Planetary Science from UCLA and currently is a member of the flight teams for the Mars Reconnaissance Orbiter and Mars Trace Gas Orbiter, at Mars, the Juno mission, in orbit around Jupiter, and the Europa Clipper, in development. The talk will be followed by a telescopic view of the outer planets, a constellation tour, and deep-sky objects viewing.

Location: Cedar Breaks NM, North View Overlook
Time: 8:15 pm to 11:00 pm