Welcome to the Ontario Parks “Eyes on the Skies” series. This space (<– see what we did there?) will cover a wide range of astronomy topics with a focus on what can be seen from the pristine skies found in our provincial parks.
While spring “technically” begins in March, most of us living in cold climates tend to celebrate May as the true start to the season.
The lakes open to allow the first paddle strokes, and the songs of migratory birds can be heard throughout the land. Staying up through twilight lets you see the splendors of the evening sky whilst being serenaded by the lovely sound of Spring Peepers and Chorus Frogs.
Here are our astronomical highlights for May, 2019:
Continue reading Eyes on the skies — May
In last month’s constellation post, we discussed the Bears and a Dragon.
In this month’s edition, we will talk about constellations that are ideal for warm weather observation.
Continue reading Featured constellations: Boötes the Herdsman, Virgo the Maiden and Libra the Scales
Valentine’s Day can be about more than roses and champagne.
Why not surprise your loved one(s) with a trip to the great outdoors? It’s a great opportunity to get in touch with nature and spend some quality time together.
If you’re not sure where to go, we’ve got you covered! Take a look at some of the romantic activities here at Ontario Parks:
Continue reading 7 ideas for romantic in-park dates
For thousands of years, humans have looked up at the stars. The stars helped them try to understand their purpose, and the role they play in our lives.
To help memorize the different stars, patterns of connect-the-dot figures were created by many different cultures. Today, we recognize 88 official patterns or “constellations” of stars.
Today we will explore one of the most well-known constellations: Orion.
Continue reading Featured constellation: Orion
Welcome to the Ontario Parks “Eyes on the Skies” series. This “space” will cover a wide range of astronomy topics with a focus on what can be seen from the pristine skies found in our provincial parks.
The cold, crisp days of the New Year often reward us with fantastically beautiful nights, rich with bright stars and interesting sights.
Of the 17 brightest stars seen from Ontario, nine of them are visible during winter nights and many interesting objects await the observer who is prepared to brave the cold.
Here are our astronomical highlights for January:
Continue reading Eyes on the skies – January
November is the perfect time for stargazing.
Even though the temperatures are cooling down, the early sunset and later sunrise provide us with almost fifteen hours of darkness in which to observe nighttime splendors. Plus, there are some exciting occurrences lighting up the skies all month long.
Why not take some time this month to view these celestial splendours?
Continue reading Celestial objects of interest in November
Welcome to the Ontario Parks “Eyes on the Skies” series. This will cover a wide range of astronomy topics with a focus on what can be seen from the pristine skies found in our provincial parks.
November usually brings our first snows and the opportunity for some great outdoor adventures.
The early sunset and later sunrise provides us with almost fifteen hours of darkness in which to observe nighttime splendors.
Here are our astronomical highlights for November:
Continue reading Eyes on the skies — November
What happens when two great organizations work together to promote astronomy and dark skies? An incredible experience that captivated visitors from all over Ontario and beyond.
On September 22, 2018, we launched Ontario Parks’ first Dark-Sky Preserve in Killarney Provincial Park (the other is in Lake Superior Provincial Park) with a special “Stars over Killarney” program. Joining us as co-hosts for this special event were our friends at Science North, one of Canada’s best hands-on science museums.
Continue reading Stars over Killarney 2018
On July 17, 2018, Lake Superior Provincial Park was officially recognized as a nationally certified Dark Sky Preserve by the Royal Astronomical Society of Canada, becoming our second provincial park to earn this prestigious designation.
Continue reading The Lake Superior Provincial Park Dark Sky Preserve
Stars as seen in midnight’s gaze
Stars shining upon shoreline’s haze
Guiding us, teaching us with stories manifold
About ourselves, stars speak, from birth till old.
Their permanence ties us to days gone by
But to hide their secrets, they still do try
To gaze upon them brings dreams of futures bright
But to see them vanish, is to lose much delight.
At Ontario Parks, we’re committed to the protection and preservation of our province’s biodiversity. The night skies in their natural splendour is an important part of that protection.
Continue reading Do the skies need our protection?