Programs & Events
Dark Sky Park Program Coordinator
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 Headlands will kick off its “Evenings Under the Stars” series of programs on Friday, April 17! Alpena’s Besser Planaterium Director Johnathan Winckowski will give a presentation in celebration of Statewide Astronomy Night. The event runs from 7-9 p.m. and is free to the public.
Beginning at 8 p.m. on Wednesday, April 22, our astronomy assistants will deliver a presentation and then help guests in viewing the Lyrids Meteor Shower through binoculars. Binoculars will not be provided and guests will need to bring their own. Observation is weather-permitting. Cost is $5 a person.
The Lyrids is an average shower with about 20 meteors per hour at its peak runs annually from April 16-25. It is produced by dust particles left behind by comet C/1861 G1 Thatcher discovered in 1861. The shower peaks in 2020 on the night of the night of the April 22 into the morning of April 23. The meteors radiate from the constellation Lyra though they may appear anywhere in the sky and sometimes produce bright dust trails lasting for several seconds. A nearly-new moon this year will ensure dark skies to help with the Lyrids show.
Beginning at 6 p.m. on Saturday, May 23, our astronomy assistants will deliver a presentation about the Structure of the Solar System, followed by guided night sky observation with telescopes out on the viewing platform. Observation is weather-permitting. Cost is $5 a person.
On Friday, June 19, Professor Sally Oey of the University of Michigan will be at the Headlands’ Waterfront Event Center on for a special presentation in another of our “Evenings Under the Stars” series. Professor Oey will be discussing about “The Importance of Michigan Dark Skies” and the effects of light pollution on humans and wildlife. The event runs from 7-9 p.m. Cost is $5 per person.
On Friday, June 26, Professor Norbert Vance of Eastern Michigan University, director of the EMU Sherzer Observatory, will join us at the Headlands Waterfront Event Center for a special presentation on the impact of the Apollo missions, NASA’s attempts from 1963-1972 to land humans on the moon. Professor Vance will talk about the advances and discoveries the missions made, and the program’s effects on the field of astronomy. The event runs from 9-11 p.m. Cost is $5 per person. Guided night sky observation, with telescopes out on the viewing platform, will follow Professor Vance’s presentation, weather-permitting.