Aerial view of campus with Williamsport, the Susquehanna River and Bald Eagle Mountain as a backdrop

Children and families invited to view the night sky during event planned by students

School’s out for summer, so bring the kids to the park after dark. They’ll look millions of years into the past as they use telescopes and binoculars to gaze at stars, planets, the Milky Way and more at Muncy Heritage Park and Nature Trail when Muncy Historical Society hosts its “Under the Night Sky” on June 14.

The event was planned in part, with the help of two Lycoming College communication students, Katie Redman and Bronwen Klem, in collaboration with the Muncy Historical Society.

Chris Dalla Piazza, an amateur astronomer and astrophotographer since 1992, will lead the night-sky viewing program at the society’s Heritage Park and Nature Trail location, 601 Pepper Street, Muncy.

As darkness falls, park guests will be invited to join Dalla Piazza at the Educational Pavilion where he will discuss what will be visible through the park-provided telescope experience. At a minimum, the telescopes will search out double stars or perhaps a star cluster and, if Saturn and the Moon clear the tree line, they, too, might be viewable.

The park is the ideal location to explore the night sky outdoors. As a river community, Muncy’s historic and cultural heritage has always been tied to the Susquehanna River, and the park’s location is ideal to celebrate its legacy. Guests are encouraged to arrive at the park at 7 p.m. to give their eyes an opportunity to adapt to the lack of light. Flashlights covered in red cellophane will be made available and red candle luminaries will line the pathways to the telescope viewing areas. To encourage further learning, a “Glow in the Dark Star Finder” will be given to the first 25 young people so they can continue night sky exploration on his or her own.

The society’s meetings and events are always open to the public, with free admission unless stated. This is an all-outside event so dress appropriately. The decision to cancel the evening’s activities because of inclement weather conditions will be made by 5 p.m. The rain date is June 23. Call (570) 564-5917 for an update when weather is a consideration.

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