“Earth Hour” will be on the 29th at 8 PM. The tallest towers in Atlanta and Chicago, the Phoenix Suns’ arena and the Golden Gate Bridge will join sites that are turning off the lights for an hour. The amount of reduction in light pollution and the energy saved will be measured.
On March 25, the city of Harmony, Florida will join many other cities around the world as part of the Earth Week activities. The town will hold its 6th annual Dark Sky Festival from 6-11 PM. In Harmony, their event is a family fun event where the town lights will be dimmed for the festival and families are encouraged to bring blankets to sit on the lawn and gaze at the stars to create awareness of not just astrology, but just how much light pollution is really taking from us. If I could be in Florida that weekend, I would definitely be at the festival in Harmony!
I love stargazing and I definitely know that more rural areas are much better for it. Living in the city, we seldom see many stars, even in suburbia when I was in Michigan, I could usually see Orion, sometimes the Big Dipper, but the glow from Detroit was much more pronounced in the night sky.
When I am in a more rural area I can see so much more clearly the stars. I thought the Little Dipper had gone away until one night traveling “up north” in Michigan I found it and Cassiopeia too. When Mars was close enough to see it brightly with the naked eye, I still had to squint to see it in Northville, but in the country, you even got a hint of the red glow!
According to an article at USNews.com, studies have shown that the same light pollution that blinds us to the stars can also cause some health risks to us and wildlife. Darkness enhances the deepness of sleep, rest which is essential for brain function. They’ve also noted that there is documentation that supports safety and security lighting may not be a safe or secure as people think. The lights hitting the human eye cause momentary blindness, let alone a false sense of security. The same lights that can scare off an intruder can also light their way!
In Harmony, they will dim the lights and spend some time actually seeing the stars on the 25th. They’ll save some energy too and for a few hours, get a look at what the world REALLY looks like at night.
Dark Sky Festival in Harmony Florida