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Western Slope Skies: LAKE CITY’S 2024 STARFEST

Lake City astronomy event under the Milky Way.
Michael Underwood.
Lake City astronomy event under the Milky Way. 

Greetings KVNF listeners! My name is Phillip Virden, an amateur astronomer in Lake City, Colorado.

This year’s Lake City Star Fest will be held June 7-9. We invite the public to celebrate the incredible starry night skies in our area along with some of Lake City’s rich and colorful cultural heritage. In 2020, the Lake Fork Valley Conservancy’s Earth and Sky Center was designated a Dark Sky Park by Dark Sky International.

Whether you are a casual observer or an experienced astronomer, this free event has something for everyone. Enjoy cosmic activities, telescope exploration, educational programs, networking opportunities, and more.

The schedule for Lake City Star Fest includes a welcoming gathering at Packer’s Saloon and Cannibal Grill on Friday evening, June 7th from 6 to 8 p.m. Then, participants will walk a block over to Lake City’s Town Park to “Lights Out Lake City” and to enjoy viewing the starry night sky.

On Saturday morning, June 8th, there will be an astronomy networking gathering at the Lake Fork Valley Conservancy’s Earth and Sky Center. The guest speaker will be Kyle Davis, an astrophysicist and astronomy educator from Englewood, Colorado.

Later that morning, there will be a solar viewing session at the Lake City Public Library’s yard followed by a special afternoon program at the Mountaineer Movie Theatre.

On Saturday evening, a star party will take place at the Slumgullion Observation site. Featured speakers will include Dani Robben, chairperson for Dark Sky Colorado and Bryan Cashion, President of the Black Canyon Astronomical Society. The Slumgullion Observation site features a light pollution free sky.

Lake City Star Fest concludes Sunday morning with a birdwatching session with birdwatcher Judy Boyce.

In addition to these activities, folks are encouraged to enjoy the Lake City Arts Artwalk on Friday from 4 to 6 p.m., the Hinsdale Historical Museum, and Lake City’s many shops and restaurants.

The Lake City Star Fest is sponsored by the Lake Fork Valley Conservancy, the Lake City/Hinsdale County Chamber of Commerce, and Lake City Skies.

For more information and to register for Lake City Star Fest, please visit www.lakecitystarfest.org. For information on lodging and other activities, please go to www.lakecity.com.

Western Slope Skies is produced by the Black Canyon Astronomical Society and KVNF Community Radio. This feature was written and voiced by Phillip Virden.