Geauga Park District’s Observatory Park in Montville Township is open daily 6 a.m. to 11 p.m. Labor Day through Memorial Day, and naturalists including “Astro-Nat” Chris Mentrek are eager to lead the way around your International Dark Sky Park this fall.
Please note that registration is required for all the following programs, with the exception of guided night sky viewing and the lunar eclipse, at geaugaparkdistrict.org under Programs & Activities, or by phone at 440-286-9516 between 10 a.m. and 4 p.m. daily.
Observatory Park is an evening hot spot these Fridays and Saturdays for guided night sky viewing opportunities: October 22 and 23, November 12, 13, 26 and 27, and December 10 and 11 at the park’s main campus (naturalist-led), as well as October 16, November 20 and December 18 at Nassau Astronomical Station (Chagrin Valley Astronomical Society volunteer-led).
Did you know that Ohio will experience a near-total Lunar Eclipse in the wee hours of November 19? Wake up to appreciate this rare spectacle in the park! The eclipse lasts from 1 to 7 a.m. early Friday morning, but the most dramatic part of the eclipse will occur from 2 to 4 a.m., as our moon passes into darkness, so that’s when a naturalist will be on hand at the park – that is, unless it’s too cloudy.
Naturalist Chris presents astronomy education onsite these Fridays at 7 p.m.: November 12 (All About Eclipses) and December 10 (Henrietta Leavitt: Astronomy Pioneer), as well as virtual Zoom programs these following Fridays at 7 p.m.: October 22 (Ohio’s Ancient Astronomers) and November 26 (All About Eclipses).
Feel inspired by outer space? Learn basic journaling techniques at Nature Journaling: Night Sky on Monday, November 22, with sessions available in the morning and afternoon. A one-time registration fee covers the cost of a journal, pen and pencil.
Certain age groups get extra-special access to Observatory Park this season. Youth ages 3 to 5 with an adult can sign up for Astrotots: Super Stars on Friday or Saturday, November 5 or 6, with three sessions available each day. And youth ages 6 to 11 with an adult can sign up for Nature Explorers: Astronomy on Saturday, November 20.
Geared toward grades 6 through 12 — though all are welcome — the Geauga Skywatchers Club has returned to in-person meetings, traveling to a different branch of the Geauga County Public Library each month. All those interested can register through geaugalibrary.libcal.
“Astro-Nat” Chris presents his The Sky Tonight Planetarium Shows on Sundays, October 24, November 28 and December 12, during two sessions afternoon.
Don’t forget 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 geaugaparkdistrict.org, Facebook, Twitter, Instagram or YouTube.