Geauga Park District’s Observatory Park in Montville Township offers a variety of special programs this summer and Naturalists including “Astro-Nat” Chris Mentrek are eager to lead the way around your International Dark Sky Park. The Park is open daily 6 a.m. to 1 a.m. through Labor Day, then till 11 p.m., giving you plenty of time to explore.
Nights Out in the Park outdoor movie nights include “Apollo 13” on Saturday, July 24, and the original “Mary Poppins” on Saturday, August 7. Guests may arrive as early as 8:30 p.m. to enjoy free ice cream treats while supplies last, with films beginning at dusk. Bring blankets, lawn chairs, and your own refreshments to make it an awesome evening under these internationally renowned dark skies!
The evening of Wednesday, August 11, sign up to stay late or spend the night to watch the Perseid Meteor Shower during the Meteors & Moths Overnight Event. It is the one night when tent camping is allowed at Observatory Park, with peak meteor time between 1 and 3 a.m.! Cool moths will be attracted to our black light and mercury vapor lamps, helping to sample and survey nocturnal wildlife. Please check our website for camping guidelines. A naturalist will be on hand from sunset to sunrise.
Guided Night sky viewing is offered on Fridays (August 13th and 27th) and Saturdays (August 14 and 28th). Then again September 10, 11, 24, and 25 (naturalist-led).
The Nassau Astronomical Station (Chagrin Valley Astronomical Society volunteer-led) viewing will be on August 21 and September 18th.
Astronomy education will be presented onsite Friday, September 10, at 7 p.m., in a program about astronomy-centric citizen science projects and how you can participate, while virtual Zoom programs will be presented on these following Fridays at 7 p.m.: August 27 (Meteors for Beginnings) and September 24 (Citizen Science: Space Projects).
Naturalist-led hikes will be hosted on Monday, August 9 (Early Morning Nature Walks) and Sunday, September 27 (Nature Trek Fitness Hikes).
And did you know certain age groups get extra-special access? Young people ages 3 to 5 and their parents can sign up for Astrotots: Animals in Orbit on Friday or Saturday, August 20 or 21, and seniors can sign up for Elderberries: Astronomy Night on the evening of Thursday, September 16. Register for these popular programs soon; Elderberries registration is open now for Geauga County residents and begins September 1 for out-of-county residents.
Plus, last but certainly not least, “Astro-Nat” Chris presents his awesome The Sky Tonight Plantarium Shows on Sundays, July 25, August 29 and September 26, during two time slots each day.
Registration is required for the overnight event, education programs, Astrotots, Elderberries, Early Morning Nature Walks, Nature Trek Fitness Hikes and planetarium shows. The overnight event and Elderberries have special registration schedules for out-of-county residents. You can find more information and online registration at www.geaugaparkdistrict.org under Programs & Activities by filtering by Astronomy. You may also call 440-226-4695 or 440-226-4636 between 10 a.m. and 4 p.m.
Our mobile-friendly website is also available 24/7 to learn more about Observatory Park, its features, and its trails totaling almost four miles. By all means, enjoy!
For more on Geauga Park District offerings, please call 440-226-4695 or 440-226-4636 or visit Geauga Park District online via www.geaugaparkdistrict.org, Facebook, Twitter, Instagram or YouTube.