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 (439 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

    Lifelong Superior resident and veteran firefighter John Paul Perez hired as town’s new fire chief

    August 17th, 2016
    by

      John Paul Perez, a lifelong resident of Superior and a 20-year veteran of the Superior Fire Department, has been […]


    Mt. Vista’s Spirit Rock ready for parents to rent

    August 17th, 2016
    by

    Oracle – This year, students of Mt. Vista School will be starting their own “spirit rock” tradition, with a boulder […]


    Grief support group for Tri-Community area

    August 17th, 2016
    by

    Oracle –  Starting, Sept. 14 and running through Nov. 9,  a nine-week long course, utilizing the book Understanding Your Grief […]


    New Miners’ coach ‘excited’ for upcoming season

    August 17th, 2016
    by

      The San Manuel football team will have its third head coach in as many seasons roaming the sidelines when […]


  • Additional Stories

    Community Church learns about Tri-Community Food Bank

    August 17th, 2016
    by

      The Community Church of SaddleBrooke (CCSB) Mission Committee had the pleasure of having Judy Haberski of Tri-Community Food Bank […]


    Oracle Firewise awards local citizens

    August 17th, 2016
    by

      Last week, three citizens of Oracle were awarded the Firewise award for making sure their commercial and residential properties […]


    Kearny property tax to remain the same

    August 17th, 2016
    by

      The Kearny Town Council voted not to raise the primary property tax percentage during its special council meeting last […]


    Prickly Pear Festival in Superior: two days of fun and food

    August 17th, 2016
    by

      The Superior Chamber of Commerce will be hosting its fifth annual Prickly Pear Festival and this year the event […]


  • Copperarea

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

  • Arizona Headlines & Current Weather