“Universe in the Park” Summer Telescope Observing Program

Universe In The Park

The Minnesota Institute for Astrophysics hosted in 2022 another “Universe in the Park,” the second summer telescope observing program after missing 2020 due to Covid-19 concerns.

These star-gazing evenings at Minnesota parks and nature centers were presented in association with the Minnesota Department of Natural Resources, the Three Rivers Park District, and the Dodge Nature Center not-for-profit organization.

Date Day Venue
July 1 Friday William O’Brien State Park
July 8 Friday Dodge Nature Center (West St. Paul)
July 9 Saturday Lowry Nature Center (Carver campground)
July 16 Saturday Eastman Nature Center
July 22 Friday Afton State Park
July 23 Saturday Nerstrand Big Woods State Park
July 29 Friday Dodge Nature Center (Cottage Grove)
July 30 Saturday Eastman Nature Center
August 5 Friday William O’Brien State Park
August 6 Saturday Lowry Nature Center (At the nature center)
August 12 Friday Gooseberry Falls State Park
August 13 Saturday Tettegouche State Park
August 19 Friday Mille Lacs Kathio State Park
August 20 Saturday Father Hennepin State Park
August 27 Saturday Afton State Park

The Institute for Astrophysics, part of the University of Minnesota’s College of Science and Engineering, hopes to convey the excitement of astronomical research and amateur astronomy.

The Minnesota Space Grant Consortium helps support Universe in the Park.

Each viewing evening began with a short talk and slide show, and questions from the audience were encouraged. After the presentation, if weather allowed, attendees were able to view the sky through multiple 8-inch reflecting telescopes. Free star maps from Skymaps.com were provided.

Presentations covered a wide variety of astronomical topics, including the history of matter, the solar system, galaxies, and how astronomers “see” outside the visible spectrum.

Universe in the Park is headed by University of Minnesota faculty member Evan Skillman and graduate student Nico Adams.

The events returned in Summer 2021 after missing Summer 2020 due to concerns over the Covid-19 pandemic.

Universe in the Park presentation

“Universe in the Park” website
“Universe @ Home” website
Public Telescope Viewing website

“Universe @ Home” YouTube Channel

Dodge Nature Center
Three Rivers Park District
Minnesota Department of Natural Resources

July 21, 2020 – Minnesota Institute for Astrophysics
Introduces “Universe @ Home” – mspmag.com

University of Wisconsin “Universe in the Park”

Universe in the Park presentation