Champaign County Dark Sky Week

Did you know that Middle Fork River Forest Preserve was the FIRST Dark Sky Park in the state of Illinois and is recognized as one of the darkest spots in Champaign County? Use this guide as a go-to source to learn more about the precious natural resource that is our dark night skies.

The guide includes fun activities to help the younger generation learn about light pollutions, phases of the moon, why dark skies are important and more!

 

Monday, April 5th, 2021

DARK SKY RESOURCE & ACTIVITY GUIDE RELEASE

Guides are available to download or printed copies will be available outside of the:

  • Homer Lake Interpretive Center at Homer Lake Forest Preserve
  • Museum of the Grand Prairie at Lake of the Woods Forest Preserve
  • Campground Host Cabin, Middle Fork River Forest Preserve

One of our greatest natural resources is the wondrous night sky. Check out this resource for all ages to learn what can be found in the sky, the effect of nighttime on humans & wildlife, grow your appreciation for dark skies, and many other ways to enjoy the night sky. Download the activity guide or pick one up at one of our facilities to help you appreciate the night sky at the preserves or even your own backyard. Fix your eyes to the sky and start exploring! FREE. For more info: (217) 586-2612 or pcain@ccfpd.org.

Tuesday, April 6th, 2021

BATS OF ILLINOIS
Online Event, Streaming via ZOOM, 6 p.m.
Hosted By: CCAS

Tara Hohoff, mammalogist with the Illinois Natural History Survey and the Illinois Bat Conservation Program, will give us a background of the bats of our Illinois skies and what people can do right in their own backyards to help bats, which face many threats. She will leave time for a Q & A at the end to answer all of your batty questions. Come learn more about these fascinating nocturnal creatures and why they are essential to healthy ecosystems.

Click here to join the Join Zoom Meeting

Meeting ID: 894 1182 2990

Password: 504440

Wednesday, April 7th, 2021

PREVENTING BIRD WINDOW STRIKES AT THE UNIVERSITY OF ILLINOIS
Online Event, Streaming via ZOOM, 5:30 p.m.
Hosted By: Chambana Science Cafe

Join us for the next edition of Science Café on Wednesday April 7th at 5:30PM!

Sarai Stuart will talk about her work in a talk titled “Preventing bird window strikes at the University of Illinois” You can listen to the talk on zoom or YouTube live with the links below.

Join Via Zoom:

Meeting ID: 840 5578 3561

Password: 264078

Join via YouTube live

Wednesday, April 7th, 2021

LIGHT POLLUTION, HOW IT AFFECTS YOU AND WHAT YOU CAN DO ABOUT IT
Online Event, Streaming on CCFPD Facebook and YouTube pages, 7 p.m.

It’s International Dark Sky Week, but what does that mean? Is it more than shutting your lights off? Retired Director of William M. Staerkel Planetarium at Parkland College, Dave Leake, will give an overview of why International Dark Sky Week exists, activities you can do to celebrate it, and what YOU can do to contribute to an international cause. He’ll give you a checklist of things you can do to improve the lighting efficiency of your own home and ways for all ages to enjoy the sky. Then, venture out to Illinois’ FIRST International Dark Sky Park, Middle Fork River Forest Preserve, to appreciate the night sky in one of Champaign County’s darkest locations! FREE.

For more info: (217) 586-2612 or pcain@ccfpd.org.

Friday, April 9th, 2021

PRAIRIE SKIES
Online Event, Streaming on via ZOOM, 7 p.m.

A live‑narrated tour of the wonders of tonight's sky, accompanied by some of the legendary stories of the ancient sky. Find out what constellations and planets are visible tonight and how to find them. This show is updated seasonally and is intended for all ages.

Showing every other Friday at 7 p.m.

Click here for the link to the Zoom meeting for these shows.

Sunday, April 11th, 2021

CHAMPAIGN COUNTY LIGHT'S OUT
Self-Guided Activity

Pledge to be part of our very own "Earth Hour" in Champaign County! Switch your lights off for at least one full hour at 8:00 pm your local time to send a message and help wildlife have safe passage through our skies. Find our pledge here