Dark skies over Oracle? Committee has inaugural meeting

Facebooktwittergoogle_plusredditpinterestlinkedinmailby feather

The Milky Way rises over Oracle on June 3, 2013. Mike Weasner | Submitted

A time lapse photo of the northern sky taken June 2. 2013.
Mike Weasner | Submitted

Oracle resident and astronomer Mike Weasner (far left) addresses the Oracle Dark Sky Committee. John Hernandez | Miner

San Manuel Miner

The Oracle Dark Skies Committee had its kick off meeting Thursday, April 10 at the Kannally Ranch House in Oracle State Park. The meeting was well attended and plans are being developed to have Oracle State Park become a designated International Dark Skies Park (IDSP). Once Oracle State Park is designated as an IDSP, it will become the model for additional parks within the Arizona Parks system to follow. The IDSP designation will be good for Arizona, Pinal County, the Copper Corridor, Oracle, and the environment.

The Oracle Dark Skies Committee is being led by Mike Weasner of Oracle. He is an amateur astronomer with a BS degree in Astrophysics. Mike is a former fighter pilot, pilot instructor, former manager in the US Air Force Shuttle Program and a retired senior manager for a large aerospace company. The committee will be gathering support letters from politicians, businesses, organizations, government agencies and others as well as looking for sponsors.

The International Dark Skies Association (IDSA) is an organization dedicated to preserving and protecting the night time environment and our heritage of dark skies through environmentally responsible outdoor lighting. They are considered the authority on light pollution and are consulted by government agencies in developing lighting ordinances. The IDSA is the approving authority making Oracle State Park an International Dark Skies Park provided they meet the qualifications. It is believed that Oracle and the lower San Pedro Valley have some very good dark skies.

Achieving the International Dark Skies Park designation will bring recognition to Oracle State Park. The IDSA has thousands of members in 70 countries. They also have chapters and affiliates around the world. Other benefits the park would receive are:

• Increased educational opportunities for science projects for local schools.

• Oracle State Park and the community of Oracle would reap economic benefits from increased visitation to the area.

• County wide public relations and economic benefits from having an International Dark Sky Park in Pinal County. Visitors coming to the park would be exposed to the Copper Corridor area and Pinal County.

• Through the education of residents, light pollution will be reduced which will result in long term health, environmental, and economic benefits within Pinal County.

The Oracle Dark Skies Committee will be meeting every week on Thursday at 6:30 p.m. at the Kannally Ranch House in Oracle State Park. If interested in volunteering, sponsoring, or would like more information contact Mike Weasner at 520-289-3402 or email: mweasner@mac.com.

John Hernandez (503 Posts)

John Hernandez lives in Oracle. He is retired and enjoys writing and traveling. He is active in the Oracle Historical Society. He covers numerous public events, researches historical features and writes business/artist profiles.


Facebooktwittergoogle_plusredditpinterestlinkedinmailby feather
Facebooktwitterby feather

Comments are closed.

  • Additional Stories

    Holy Graphic Novels, Batman! There’s a new comic book store in Superior!

    March 23rd, 2017
    by

      Jessie Ybarra and Laura Rivas have opened Superior’s first comic book store—Superior Superhero Stuff. The sisters were born and raised […]


    Augie Hing named HOBY representative

    March 23rd, 2017
    by

      Sophomore Augie Hing has been selected to represent Superior High School in the HOBY State Leadership Seminar. The HOBY (Hugh […]


    Former Miners compete at UA’s Willie Williams Track & Field Classic

    March 23rd, 2017
    by

      Former Miner track and field athletes Cita Sweeney and Wayne Newman kicked off their 2017 College Outdoor track season competing […]


    Find out the buzz on buzzards at the Arboretum

    March 23rd, 2017
    by

    Superior – One sure sign of Spring’s return is the revisitation of the seasonal flock of Turkey Vultures at the […]


  • Additional Stories

    Annual CVRMC Health Fair & Get Fit Run set for Saturday, April 1 – No foolin’

    March 23rd, 2017
    by

    On April 1, 2017  Cobre Valley Regional Medical Center (CVRMC) will be hosting its annual Health Fair on the campus […]


    San Manuel swimmers compete at State Championship Meet

    March 23rd, 2017
    by

      The Arizona  Age Group State Championship Swim Meet was held March 9-12 at the Oro Valley Aquatic Center.   Johnny […]


    What does college, and career ready mean? Cobre Valley Institute of Technology (CVIT) provides answers

    March 23rd, 2017
    by

      College today means a lot more than just pursuing a four-year degree at a university. Being “college ready” means being […]


    Kearny pulls out of joint chief selection; Hayden and Mammoth to hire shared chief

    March 23rd, 2017
    by

      During a special Kearny Town Council meeting on Friday, March 10, the Kearny Town Council voted to no longer participate […]


  • Copperarea

  • [Advertisement.]
  • [Advertisement.]
  • [Advertisement.]
  • Southeast Valley Ledger