aurora borealis

The aurora borealis over Voyageurs National Park.

As part of an effort to preserve darkness for people and wildlife, a program at Voyageurs National Park Rainy Lake Visitor Center will offer an interactive tour of the known universe, and will present stories, insights, and adventures to help illuminate the mystery and beauty of the dark skies still found in Minnesota’s border country.

Voyageurs National Park Association, in partnership with the National Park Service and the University of Minnesota — Duluth, will host a free dark sky program on Feb. 27 for the community.

The program is a celebration of the effort to secure Dark Sky Park certification of Voyageurs National Park from the International Dark Sky Association.

“Cosmic tour and Dark Sky adventures with Travis Novitsky and Joel Halvorson,” will include a guided interactive tour of the universe using the Boreal Observatory and attendees will hear from Novitsky and Halvorson about the dark skies.

The program will end with a 30-minute award-winning film that tells the story of the first image captured of the Earth from space in 1968, as recalled by the Apollo 8 astronauts: “Earthrise — The Image That Shared Our World” and inspired the first Earth Day.

Novitsky is a life-long resident of the North Shore of Lake Superior and a citizen of the

Grand Portage Anishinabe Nation. A self-taught nature and wildlife photographer, he has been

photographing the night sky for over 20 years. Halvorson, UMD, has been teaching and

developing educational programs for 35 years. He is developing the Boreal Observatory as part of UMD’s support for Dark Sky preservation in the region.

About Voyageurs National Park Association

Voyageurs National Park Association was founded in 1965 and is the official charitable

partner of Voyageurs National Park. Led by a group of community leaders,Voyageurs National Park Association’s mission is “to connect people to Voyageurs National Park, enhance the visitor experience, and protect the park for present and future generations.”

VNPA accomplishes this by advocating for the park’s protection, raising funds for environmental

stewardship, and increasing community engagement by hosting education and outreach events.

More information about VNPA can be found at www.voyageurs.org .

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