Beaver Hills Dark Sky Preserve 6th Annual Star Party

bhdsp_dark_skiesBeaver Hills Dark Sky Preserve
6th Annual Star Party

A Party under the Stars

Astotin Lake, Elk Island National Park

Sunday, Sep 4, 2011

Thank you for supporting your local national park by purchasing an entry pass at the park gates and campground kiosk. The event is free for all visitors with a valid park pass.

On the Labour Day weekend join us for our annual celebration of the Beaver Hills Dark Sky Preserve (BHDSP) hosted by:

  • Royal Astronomical Society of Canada – Edmonton Centre
  • Alberta Tourism, Parks and Recreation
  • Parks Canada Agency – Elk Island National Park
  • Strathcona Wilderness Centre
  • Ukrainian Cultural Heritage Village
  • Sherwood Park Fish and Game Ketchamoot Creek Recreation and Conservation Area

Sunday, September 4th marks the fifth anniversary of the creation of the Beaver Hills Dark Sky Preserve.

Outdoor activities include public stargazing with astronomers using a variety of telescopes, and children’s activities.

Indoor activities include a photography workshop, astronomical presentations, interpretative programs and red light flashlight assembly. Please join us as we welcome our new partner, Miquelon Lake Provincial Park, into the BHDSP.

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Beaver Hills Dark Sky Preserve 5th Annual Star Party

bhdsp_dark_skiesBeaver Hills Dark Sky Preserve
5th Annual Star Party

Wilderness Astronomy

Astotin Lake, Elk Island National Park

Sunday, Sep 5, 2010

Thank you for supporting your local national park by purchasing an entry pass at the park gates and campground kiosk. The event is free for all visitors with a valid park pass.

On the Labour Day weekend join us for our annual celebration of Beaver Hills Dark Sky Preserve (BHDSP) hosted by

  • Royal Astronomical Society of Canada – Edmonton Centre
  • Alberta Tourism, Parks and Recreation and Culture
  • Parks Canada Agency
  • Strathcona Wilderness Centre
  • Ukrainian Cultural Heritage Village

Sunday, September 5th marked the fourth anniversary of the creation of the Beaver Hills Dark Sky Preserve. The BHDSP  welcomed our new partner, Sherwood Fish and Game: Ketchamoot Creek Recreation and Conservation Area, into the BHSDP.

Outdoor activities included public stargazing with astronomers using a variety of telescopes, children’s activities, an unveiling ceremony, and guided hikes. Indoor activities included astronomical presentations and making red light flashlights.

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Beaver Hills Dark Sky Preserve 4th Annual Star Party

20090906_bhdsp_paintingBeaver Hills Dark Sky Preserve
4th Annual Star Party

A Place For The Future
Celebrating 2009 – The International Year Of Astronomy

Astotin Lake, Elk Island National Park

Sunday, Sep 6, 2009

The Royal Astronomical Society of Canada; Parks Canada Agency; Alberta Tourism, Parks and Recreation and Culture; and Strathcona County welcomed the Ukrainian Cultural Heritage into the Beaver Hills Dark Sky Preserve partnership protecting the night-time environment for all life in the region. The Labour Day weekend marked the third anniversary of the declaration of the Beaver Hills Dark Sky Preserve. Come and celebrate with us!

Indoor theatre presentations featured guest speaker Peter Strasser – International Dark Sky Association from Tucson, AZ; Dr Douglas P Hube – ‘The Nearest Star’; and presentations from the local astronomy community. Two special interpretive theatre shows for families – AcroBATS and Galileo’s House Arrest were performed by provincial and national parks staff.

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Beaver Hills Dark Sky Preserve 3rd Annual Star Party

20080831_IMG_2714a Beaver Hills Dark Sky Preserve
3rd Annual Star Party

Party under the Stars

Astotin Lake, Elk Island National Park

Sunday, Aug 31, 2008

by Bruce McCurdy

Two years after its declaration in 2006, Beaver Hills Dark Sky Preserve continues to thrive and grow. On August 31 an anniversary celebration “Party under the Stars”; was held at the Astotin Lake Campground in Elk Island National Park.

The highlight of this year’s event was the inclusion of another partner, Strathcona Wilderness Centre, to the expanding DSP. With this latest addition, Beaver Hills becomes the first DSP in Canada to involve three levels of government: Federal, Provincial, and Municipal. This cooperative status will facilitate important dialog within and among these groups, and with RASC.

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Beaver Hills Dark Sky Preserve 2nd Annual Star Party

bhdsp_dark_skiesBeaver Hills Dark Sky Preserve
2nd Annual Star Party

The Stars Belong to Everyone

Astotin Lake, Elk Island National Park

Sunday, Sep 2, 2007

by Sherrilyn Jahrig & Richard Huziak

The first anniversary celebration of the signing of the Beaver Hills Dark-Sky Preserve declaration was held in Central Alberta at Elk Island National Park, on September 2, 2007. Whereas the RASC Edmonton Centre did the majority of organizing for last year’s inaugural event: ”Many Cultures, One Sky’; Parks Canada staff did most of the organizing for 2007. The event was well attended with several hundred guests, a lower key event compared to last year’s gate count of over 2,500!

Alberta Parks participated this year with a constellation/star-lore presentation. In January 2008, Alberta Parks will be introducing a BHDSP Provincial Initiative in Astronomy and Dark Sky Preservation Education available to elementary schools. “D.S.I.: Dark Sky Investigators” includes a theatre performance, classroom component and field trip centered on astronomy and preservation of the nocturnal environment.

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Beaver Hills Dark Sky Preserve Inaugural Celebration

20060903_aurora_teepeeBeaver Hills Dark Sky Preserve
Inaugural Celebration

Many Cultures, One Sky

Astotin Lake, Elk Island National Park

Sunday, Sep 3 2006

by Bruce McCurdy

A partnership among Parks Canada (Elk Island National Park), Alberta Parks and Protected Areas (Cooking Lake/Blackfoot Provincial Recreation Area), and the Royal Astronomical Society of Canada, the Beaver Hills Dark Sky Preserve (DSP) was officially declared on September 3, 2006 at Elk Island’s “Celebration of the Century”, marking the hundredth anniversary of Canada’s first game preserve and still Canada’s only fenced national park.

In addition to the entirety of Elk Island National Park, which contains about 196 square kilometres, Beaver Hills DSP also encompasses Cooking Lake-Blackfoot Provincial Recreation Area for a total protected area of some 293 square km. Both the Elk Island National Park and the Cooking Lake-Blackfoot Provincial Recreation Area were shared recipients of the RASC Dark Sky Preserve Award.

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