Make the stars your friends by watching the great celestial show in the skies over Lake Elmo Park Reserve from 8:15 to 10:30 p.m. Aug. 31, at a “Minnesota Starwatch Party” with Mike Lynch of WCCO-AM 830.
This night among stars, constellations, planets, star clusters, galaxies, and nebulae starts with an indoor orientation followed by time outside under the sky. Learn about famous constellations like the Big Bear, Cygnus the Swan, Scorpius the Scorpion and hear legends based on them. The group will also use large, reflecting telescopes including two 20-inch reflectors that are among the biggest mobile telescopes in Minnesota. See up-close views of the moon, star clusters, nebulae, galaxies and other wonders of late-summer skies.
The group will also use a new astronomical camera-telescope system for extra special views of more distant universe. Participants receive a handout package with a user-friendly star map and constellation chart, website list, a telescope-buying guide, and more.
Lynch is a WCCO Radio meteorologist and has been hosting “starwatch parties” and teaching astronomy classes for more than 40 years. He also writes a weekly stargazing column for the St. Paul Pioneer Press and is the author of the book “Mike Lynch’s Minnesota Star Watch” that is available for purchase at a discount. Even if it’s cloudy out, participants will learn a lot, have a great time and get a Mike Lynch “Cloud Check” for a future Minnesota Starwatch Class.
This program will meet at the Beach near the Beach Building. Participants are encouraged to bring lawn chairs and blankets. All are welcome. This program is free with a valid parks vehicle permit that cost $5 per day or $25 annually. Permits may be purchased at the park contact station. This program will be cancelled in case of rain or severe weather.
Lake Elmo Park Reserve is at the intersection of County Road 19 and County Road 10 one mile north of Interstate 94 in Lake Elmo.
For more information on this and other park programs, see www.co.washington.mn.us/parks or call the Lake Elmo contact station at 651-430-8370.