Maui News

Haleakalā National Park to Host Stargazing Program

February 26, 2020, 1:54 PM HST
* Updated February 27, 6:41 AM
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Photo courtesy: Haleakalā National Park.

The National Park Service is inviting the local community and visitors to the Haleakalā National Park for stargazing during the new “Stars Above Haleakalā” Night Sky Astronomy Program Series.

“Haleakalā has long been considered a world-class spot for stargazing, and these new astronomy programs will enable people to learn more about the stars above us and deepen connections to the night sky,” Night Sky Ranger Laurel McKenzie said in a press release.

Programs will include star talks, full moon hikes, and telescope parties. Program times and information are available here and on the park’s social media platforms. All programs are free to the public however park entrance fees still apply. Participants should dress warmly, bring something comfortable to sit or lay on, and are encouraged to bring a pair of binoculars. To preserve night sky vision, only red lights will be permitted during the programs.

Here is the 2020 “Stars Over Haleakalā” Program Schedule:

  • Star Talk on Saturday, March 21 at 7:30 p.m.
  • Full Moon Hike on Wednesday, April 8 at 7:45 p.m. (sign-up required)
  • Star Talk on Saturday, May 23 at 7:45 p.m.
  • Star Talk on Saturday, June 13 at 8 p.m.
  • Star Talk on Saturday, June 20 at 8 p.m.
  • Full Moon Hike on Saturday, July 4 at 8 p.m. (sign-up required)
  • Telescope Party on Saturday, July 25 at 8 p.m.
  • Perseid Meteor Shower Observation on Wednesday, Aug. 12 at 8 p.m.
  • Telescope Party on Saturday, Aug. 29 at 7:45 p.m.
  • Star Talk on Saturday, Sept. 19 at 7:45 p.m.
  • Telescope Party on Saturday, Oct. 17 at 7:30 p.m.
  • Full Moon Hike on Saturday, Oct. 31 at 7:30 p.m. (sign-up required)
  • Star Talk on Saturday, Nov. 14 at 7:30 p.m.
  • Geminids Meteor Shower, Sunday, Dec. 13 at 7:30 p.m.

Below is a description of each activity: 

  • Star Talk— Take a seat and look to the sky for stargazing with the naked eye. Discover constellations, current science, and cultural significance of Hawai’i’s night skies. This is a 45-minute program at the Haleakalā Visitor Center (at 9,740 feet).
  • Full Moon Hikes— Take advantage of the moon’s light on a guided ranger-led hike along the Keonehe’ehe’e Trail into Haleakalā crater. This trail is considered strenuous due to the change in elevation. All participants should dress for a hike, including comfortable walk shoes, and bring water. Red lights will be provided. The hike is limited to the first 12 participants. To sign-up for the hike, visit the Haleakalā Visitor Center (at 9,740 feet) Information Desk on the day of the program. Sign-ups are first come, first served, and cannot be made in advance. This is a 1.5-hour program beginning at the Haleakalā Visitor Center (at 9,740 feet).
  • Telescope Parties— View various solar system and deep space objects with the help of a telescope. This is a 1-hour program at Haleakalā Visitor Center (at 9,740 feet). Prior to attending the program participants should check the park’s social media for any last-minute cancellations due to weather.

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