An exciting new winter stargazing programme has been launched at Scotland’s cosmic artland, Crawick Multiverse.
The events programme has been devised by the site’s new executive director Steve Owens – an astronomer, science communicator and author – and kicks off now the clocks have gone back.
Steve says: “We are so excited to launch our stargazing programme and this is the perfect time of year. Because the clocks have just gone back an hour we will see an earlier sunset, and as the nights draw in this creates plenty of opportunity for sky-watching.
“Whether you want the chance to catch a glimpse of a meteor or you want to know how to spot a satellite, there’s something on the programme for you! The dark skies of the stunning Crawick Multiverse make it the perfect place for stargazing.”
Crawick Multiverse will host a series of stargazing evenings timed to coincide with astronomical highlights.
A guided walk entitled ‘The Multiverse by Moonlight’ will kick-start the programme on Friday 3 November from 7pm-9pm. Led by astronomer Steve, visitors can view the dramatic other-worldly landscapes across the site while exploring the connection between the earth and heavens above. This event will be repeated on Sunday 3 December from 7pm–9pm.
Also on the schedule are two ‘Dark Sky Stargazing’ events, on Saturday 18 November and Saturday 16 December from 7pm-9pm. Attendees will get the chance to watch for satellites, shooting stars, constellations and galaxies on a guided evening tour of Crawick Multiverse.
Arguably the highlight of the winter programme is a guided ‘meteor watch’ of the Geminids on Wednesday, 13 December, from 9pm with a chance to witness spectacular shooting stars.
The Geminids meteor shower is one of the most active and reliable meteor showers of the year and – provided there are optimal conditions of clear skies on the night – may provide the chance to see as many as 60 meteors every hour, perhaps even more.
The stargazing events at Crawick Multiverse are suitable for ages eight and above and attendees are urged to dress appropriately with warm, waterproof clothing, and stout footwear. All events are weather dependant and in the case of a gloomy forecast, visitors will be directed to an alternative venue for an illustrated astronomy talk and to wait for the skies to clear.
Tickets for the stargazing events can be purchased from Midsteeple Box Office, Dumfries, or are available online with Ticket Source.
You can keep track of what’s happening at Crawick Multiverse via the Facebook page at www.facebook.com/crawickmultiverse or check out @CMVerse on Twitter or #CrawickMultiverse on Instagram.