Update Oct. 12: The auditorium presentation on the James Webb Space Telescope scheduled for Friday night has been canceled. The telescope viewing event is still to take place 7:30-10 p.m. Friday as well as all events scheduled for Saturday.
Night sky enthusiasts will have two astronomy nights to check out this month at Cape Lookout National Seashore, a certified International Dark Sky Park.
At 6:30 p.m. Friday, Oct. 14, NASA Solar System Ambassador Matthew Bruce will provide an introduction to the new James Webb Space Telescope in the Harkers Island Visitor Center Theater. A chance to view the night sky with the the Crystal Coast Stargazers, a NASA Night Sky Network astronomy club, will follow, ending at 10 p.m.
Club members will be on hand to answer questions and share their telescopes. The Solar System Ambassador program will take place regardless of weather. The telescope viewing depends on the weather.
Island Express Ferry Service will host Saturday, Oct. 15, a starlight cruise to the Cape Lookout Lighthouse.
At the lighthouse, NASA Solar System Ambassador Brandon Porter will give a laser-pointed tour of the celestial objects in the night sky.
The ferry departs the Harkers Island Visitor Center promptly at 6:15 p.m. and will return from the lighthouse at 8:30 p.m. The program is free but the ferry is $27 for adults and $17 for ages 11 and younger. Space on the cruise is limited and reservations, which are required, can be made by calling the ferry at 252-728-7433.
The Crystal Coast Stargazers will be back 7 to 10 p.m. Oct. 15 with their telescopes for a second night of public stargazing near the Harkers Island Visitor Center.
All events are kid-friendly, but organizers ask no pets. Stargazing and ferry transportation is weather dependent. Call the Harkers Island Visitor Center at 252-728-2250 by 5 p.m. to confirm that day’s events.
Organizers recommend checking the weather and dressing accordingly, bringing a lawn chair or blanket, water, snacks, bug repellent, and flashlight with a red filter to help maintain everyone’s night vision.
For more information, visit http://go.nps.gov/astronomynight.