Minnesota Starwatch at Washington County parks

Visit Big Marine Park Reserve 8:30 to 10:30 p.m. Friday, Aug. 11, and Lake Elmo Park Reserve 9 to 11 p.m. Friday, Sept. 1, to watch the great celestial show in the sky with Minnesota Starwatch hosted by Mike Lynch of WCCO.

The group will meet at the beach building at Big Marine Park Reserve and on the Swim Pond grounds at Lake Elmo Park Reserve. Get to know the constellations like The Big Bear, Cygnus the Swan, Scorpius the Scorpion, and some of the stories behind them. View natural wonders of the sky — constellations, planets, star clusters, galaxies, nebulae and more.

Visitors will use large reflecting telescopes, including two 20-inch reflectors that are among the biggest mobile telescopes in Minnesota, and a new astronomical camera-telescope system for views of the more distant parts of the universe. Participants will receive user-friendly star maps and constellation charts for personal use.

Mike Lynch is a meteorologist at WCCO Radio 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.” If it’s cloudy, visitors will still learn a lot and get a Mike Lynch “Cloud Check” for a future Minnesota Starwatch Party.

The program is fee with park entrance fee, $7 daily or $30 annually. No registration required. Feel free to bring lawn chairs, blankets, snacks, bug spray, etc., for a more enjoyable experience. For questions, call 651-430-8370 or email at parks@co.washington.mn.us.


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