Programs & Events


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.

SUMMER/FALL 2020 – NOTICE TO VISITORS – Due to limited staff and procedures put in place at the park to prevent the spread of the cororavirus, visitation into the park will be limited until further notice. Though we appreciate the interest in and enthusiasm for the Headlands, we have been experiencing significant crowds nearly every clear evening for the past two weeks. With the busiest time of year at the park now upon us, we must limit the number of vehicles into the park so we can ensure the safety of all our visitors and our staff. During the park’s busy hours (typically the golden hour before sunset and up to midnight), and on nights when events are scheduled, PLEASE BE PREPARED TO WAIT. When our 67-space parking lot near the Event Center is filled, additional vehicles will be held up by park staff at the Headlands entrance. Until further notice, parking outside the park’s entrance and walking in will NO LONGER BE PERMITTED. Additionally:
   • Guests will also be asked to socially distance from other guests outside of their household/group.
   • Masks are required to be worn inside the Event Center.
   • Only members of the same household or group, or a limit of two unrelated individuals, will be permit-ted inside the Headlands gift shop at one time.
Your cooperation will help us to not only keep our staff and visitors safe, but will help us continue to keep the park open.

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. In the past, professional star-gazers and astronomers have been available onsite to enhance your viewing experience during scheduled observing nights. However, due to restrictions put in place to prevent the spread of COVID-19, the Headlands staff will not be bringing telescopes out onto the viewing platform during the 2020 summer season. Visitors are welcome to bring their own telescopes and/or binoculars.

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 and be sure to follow our Facebook page for more news and photos.

Dark Sky Park Program Coordinator
Call 231.427.1001