Programs & Events

Dark Sky Park Program Coordinator
Call 231.427.1001

Welcome to the Headlands International Dark Sky Park! The grounds, trails, and viewing areas at Headlands are open 24 hours a day, every day. Visitors are welcome to stay out through the night for dark-sky viewing opportunities, but camping is not permitted. Units like tents and campers are not allowed in the park. The Headlands is not intended as an overnight sleeping destination but instead is designed as a place to stay awake and view the stars. You may bring blankets, sleeping bags, chairs, food, beverages, etc. When packing, keep in mind that temperatures are typically 10 degrees lower than expected due to our proximity to the lake shore.

To protect the darkness of the park, please use red-filtered flashlights during your visit to the Headlands. Learn more here.

Our programs take place rain or shine, and no reservations are required unless otherwise noted.

Please save some time during your visit to stop by our “Out of This World” Gift Shop!

The Observatory is limited to park staff and researchers. Visuals when the Observatory is open are projected onto the big screen monitors on the main level. Professional star-gazers and astronomers are available on site to enhance your viewing experience during scheduled observing nights.

While the grounds, trails, viewing areas and restrooms at Headlands are always open and freely accessible, the Waterfront Event Center is only open to the public during scheduled programming and gift shop hours. The Waterfront Event Center at the Headlands is available for private rental.

To stay up-to-date on news and events at the Headlands International Dark Sky Park, register for email blasts by contacting scox@emmetcounty.org and be sure to follow our Facebook page for more news and photos.

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Crescent Moon Monday with Norbert Vance, Professor of Astronomy, Eastern Michigan University 9:00 pm
Crescent Moon Monday with Norbert Vance, Professor of Astronomy, Eastern Michigan University
Jun 18 @ 9:00 pm – 10:30 pm
Crescent Moon Monday with Norbert Vance, Professor of Astronomy, Eastern Michigan University
Throughout the summer we will gather at sunset with special guests who will inform, inspire, and entertain us with their passion for the stars, while the Crescent Moon sinks with the sunset into the lake.[...]
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A Celebration of Native American Seasonal Traditions 4:00 pm
A Celebration of Native American Seasonal Traditions
Jun 21 @ 4:00 pm – 11:00 pm
A Celebration of Native American Seasonal Traditions
COST $5 LIMITED PREFERRED PARKING $10 The Sun reaches its highest hour ~ called its Solstice ~ at dawn on June 21st, and then appears to rest for several days before beginning the long trek[...]
Free Observatory Viewing 11:00 pm
Free Observatory Viewing
Jun 21 @ 11:00 pm – Jun 22 @ 1:00 am
Real-time remote observatory telescope viewing from main level big screen monitors. Professional star gazers and astronomers on site to enhance your viewing experience. If you wish, bring your own binoculars or telescope to see more.[...]
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Free Observatory Viewing 11:00 pm
Free Observatory Viewing
Jun 23 @ 11:00 pm – Jun 24 @ 1:00 am
Real-time remote observatory telescope viewing from main level big screen monitors. Professional star gazers and astronomers on site to enhance your viewing experience. If you wish, bring your own binoculars or telescope to see more.[...]
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Free Observatory Viewing 12:00 pm
Free Observatory Viewing
Jun 24 @ 12:00 pm – 2:00 pm
Free Observatory Viewing
Real-time remote observatory telescope viewing from main level big screen monitors. Professional star gazers and astronomers on site to enhance your viewing experience. If you wish, bring your own binoculars or telescope to see more.[...]
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Free Observatory Viewing 11:00 pm
Free Observatory Viewing
Jun 30 @ 11:00 pm – Jul 1 @ 1:00 am
Real-time remote observatory telescope viewing from main level big screen monitors. Professional star gazers and astronomers on site to enhance your viewing experience. If you wish, bring your own binoculars or telescope to see more.[...]