Summer can mean a lot of different things to a lot of people: there’s the requisite picnicking, summer music festivals, trips to secluded swimming holes, etc etc. But if there’s one outdoorsy excursion we tend to overlook in our pursuit of places to drink beer outside, it’s finding a nice, clear place to get a better look up at those shimmery things in the sky. Which is why I was excited to find out that Northern California’s most active observatory is right in our backyard, just a short drive out of the city to Sonoma at Robert Ferguson Observatory.
Although the observatory is usually closed to the public, they open their doors once a month for Public Observation Nights that will only cost you $3 to get in. (If you’d rather stare at the sun, the Solar Observation periods are in the afternoon on the same days and will cost you $0.) They’ve got four big-boy telescopes with which you can stare up at the heavens and plenty of Docents on hand to tell you what you’re looking at.
And if you find out that’s not enough explanation, they also offer classes and observation labs that will give you some background on what you’re looking at an the mythology behind all those names.
Public Observation Nights:
July 10, August 14th, September 11
Starting at 9pm
$3 to the general public, FREE if you’re under 18
Robert Ferguson Observatory
Suger Loaf Ridge State Park [Sonoma]
Check the site for more info.
Hat tip to Weekend Sherpa, who have great advice on more outdoorsy excursions in the Bay.
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