Voyageurs National Park earns ‘dark-sky’ certification

8December 2020

Voyageurs National Park has become the second Minnesota location to receive official “dark-sky’’ certification by an international group.

The International Dark-Sky Association and nonprofit Voyageurs Conservancy announced the certification Monday. It followed the September certification of the Boundary Waters Canoe Area Wilderness as the state’s first official dark-sky designee.

Monday’s certification recognizes Voyageurs National Park “for the exceptional quality of its dark night skies and for the park’s commitment to preserving darkness and educating the public about this outstanding resource.”

The certification verifies Voyageurs as a great place to view constellations, northern lights and meteor showers.

To qualify as a dark-sky park, Voyageurs’ staff developed a comprehensive lighting management plan, which identifies how the park will minimize impacts to the natural night by retrofitting existing exterior lighting at park facilities.

Minnesota’s only national park, Voyageurs covers 218,000 mostly roadless acres along the Minnesota-Ontario border, much of it large lakes and most of it out of sight from urban lighting.

For more information on the International Dark-Sky Association, visit darksky.org.

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