The time has come – Observatory Park’s Nassau Astronomical Station is ready for its close-up.
Join Geauga Park District for the reopening of this historic building, restored with its huge 36” Warner & Swasey telescope YOU can use to observe the heavens, on Saturday, August 19, in Montville Township!
Free events and activities for the whole family will include shuttles to tour the Nassau Astronomical Station and its telescope from 6 to 11:30 p.m., music and entertainment, trail rides, face painting, make-n-take craft projects, games, costumed characters, hot dog dinners and more! View the complete event schedule at bit.ly/gpdspecial.
Nassau Astronomical Station was built in 1957 by the Warner & Swasey Company of Cleveland; researchers at Case Western Reserve University used it for visual study of the heavens through the ‘80s.
Geauga Park District teamed with CWRU to offer public Astronomy Nights at Nassau from 1994 to 2005, and after CWRU discontinued use of the station, it sold the facility to Geauga Park District in 2008.
“Nassau Astronomical Station’s 36” Warner & Swasey telescope is one of the largest, if not the largest, public viewing scopes in the state of Ohio,” said John Oros, executive director. “We are excited to provide opportunities to experience astronomy and the night skies to our residents now and for many, many years to come.”
Fundraising efforts made it possible to restore the facility and telescope to their former glory in 2017.
In addition to the restoration of the area’s largest publicly accessible research-grade telescope and refurbishment of the equipment necessary for its operation, renovations to Nassau included the addition of museum features, redecorating in the historic living quarters, wheelchair accessibility to the upper telescope floor, and restrooms.
Today Observatory Park is an International Dark Sky Park, and a new era of public Astronomy Nights has dawned with night sky viewing scheduled at the new facility on Saturdays 7 to 11 p.m. on August 26 and September 9, 16 and 23. Daytime open houses are also on Sundays 10 a.m. to 1 p.m. on August 27 and September 10 and 24.