Did you know that two-thirds of the United States population are unable to see the Milky Way at night from their home? The International Dark Sky Association (IDSA) did and created an event to allow people the opportunity to see our galaxy in all of its splendor. The hold an annual event known as a “Star Party” at Dripping Springs Ranch Park and Event Center in Dripping Springs, TX. This year, the Texas Big Sky Festival is being held on Saturday, March 18th from 2 pm to 10 pm and is an easy day trip from most places in the West Texas Hill Country. Read on to learn more about the Texas Big Sky Festival and why it is fun for the whole family to enjoy.
The Texas Big Sky
The IDSA is heavily invested in protecting our views of the night sky from light pollution caused by using the wrong kinds of lighting that can also harm wildlife. The festival boasts two mobile planetariums that provide you and your family an opportunity to learn about the solar system surrounding our planet. There is even a solar system walk that provides a virtual trail through the stars for explorers of all ages to embark on a trek through space. If that weren’t enough, there are solar telescopes set up that allow you to view the sun like never before without any damage to your eyes.
Spinning a Yarn
As part of the festivities for the day, the Texas Big Sky Festival features “Teepee Storytelling” that features stories about the night sky from a variety of sources. This year’s line-up features stories from Native American tradition as well as tales of the constellations and a reading of Cassandra and the Night Sky by the book’s author Amy Jackson. There will also be activities along with the stories, and this portion of the program is sure to be a hit with the younger members of your family. After dark, the stars come out to play, and the stories come to life as the constellations pop out and the stars twinkle.
It’s a Festival, Right?
What Texas festival is complete without live music and plenty of good food to eat? From 2 pm to 5 pm on the Jupiter Stage, you can hear live music from three different bands and there will be food trucks stationed throughout the festival with plenty of food to serve you and your hungry family. So why not bring a blanket, your telescope, and your family to make a day of it that they’ll remember for years to come.