Gateway to the Stars is Back for the Season at Elk Island National Park

Gateway to the Stars Elk island national park

Experience the wonder of Elk Island’s night sky. In the heart of the Beaver Hills Dark Sky Preserve during Gateway to the Stars. You will escape the city to gaze upon the countless stars in our galaxy and learn to navigate from one constellation to the next. Campfire and a friendly park interpreter are included.

When, where and how to register:

Dates: Fridays and Saturdays – September 18, 19, 25, 26 | October 2, 3, 9, 10, 16, 17, 23, 24

Time: 9:00 pm to 10:00 pm

Location: Astotin Day Use area

Cost: $11.70 per person, plus valid park pass

Register: 780-922-2965 or email Registration is required; max of 20 participants. Registrations are managed on Tuesdays and Thursdays. Please contact us on one of those days, send an email, or leave a message and we will get back to you on the next booking day.

These events sell quickly! They’re such an affordable way to get out an experience something new at the Beaver Hills Dark Sky Preserve, and are an incredibly kid-friendly way to explore the night sky. Interpreters are on hand to enthusiastically answer any of the questions that our kids have had through the experience, and you’ll stay warm by campfire.

TIP: Find more inspiration for exploring Alberta, here.

Here’s what you should know before you go: 

  • There is no age limit mentioned in this year’s event, but we suggest kids 6+ with an interest in the night sky to ensure that they’re going to be engaged enough
  • Bring a thermos of hot cocoa with you to enjoy and keep warm, as well as dressing in layers, bringing chairs and blankets, to keep everyone comfortable while you view the night sky
  • Download the Night Sky app, where you can engage kids and they can learn more on the way home about the constellations in the night sky that they just had the chance to view.
  • It’s a late night, so consider dressing younger children in pyjamas, so they can sleep on the way home from Elk Island National Park, and you can easily transfer them into bed at the end of the night.

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