A certified International Dark Sky Park, Cape Lookout National Seashore is staying open late May 6 for its monthly Astronomy Night.
The free program begins at 7:30 p.m. in the Harkers Island Visitor Center Theater with NASA Solar System Ambassador Matthew Bruce.
Bruce will provide a 45-minute presentation on the James Webb Space Telescope that NASA launched in December 2021. Webb is the largest, most powerful and most complex space telescope ever built and launched into space.
Following the presentation, park staff and local astronomers from the Crystal Coast Stargazers, a NASA Night Sky Network astronomy club, will host a Star Party on the visitor center grounds. Participants will be able to gaze at the moon, and other astronomical objects above the Southern Outer Banks through the lens of a telescope.
Enthusiasts can bring their own telescopes to learn how to get the most out of their own telescopic equipment from members of the Stargazers club.
This event is child-friendly, but leave the pets at home.
Stargazing is weather dependent. Solar System Ambassador programs are rain or shine. Call the Harkers Island visitor center at 252-728-2250 by 5 p.m. to confirm status.
Organizers recommend checking the weather and dressing accordingly, bring lawn chairs or blankets, water, snacks, bug repellent and flashlight with a red filter that helps in maintaining everyone’s night vision.