Rockford area “Star Party” will provide an opportunity to view the Perseid meteor shower beyond the city lights

Saul Lake Bog Preserve

The Land Conservancy of West Michigan and Boy Scout Troop 228 of Rockford are cohosting a “Star Party” for the annual Perseid meteor shower.  The family-friendly event is open to the public and will be held on August 10, 2013 at the Land Conservancy’s Saul Lake Bog Preserve (10469 Six Mile Rd., Rockford, MI).  Activities will begin at 8:00 p.m.

The Perseid meteor shower is considered to be among the best meteor showers of the year with the potential to see over 50 meteors per hour (best viewing will occur after midnight).  Several members of the Grand Rapids Amateur Astronomical Association (GRAAA) will be attending the event with telescopes for the public to use for a closer look at the night sky.  They will also be available to answer questions about astronomy.

“We are delighted to partner with Boy Scout Troop 228 to host this Star Party at Saul Lake Bog Preserve.  It gives West Michigan residents an opportunity to get away from the city lights in order to enjoy the meteor shower in a natural setting.  And with members of GRAAA in attendance as well, it should be both a fun and educational night.”

While the evening’s feature show will be stargazing and the meteor shower, some additional activities are planned.  During Boy Scout led night hikes through the preserve, participants will get the opportunity to use their other senses to navigate as well as learn nighttime orienteering skills. Local naturalist Ranger Steve Mueller will see if he can lure some moths in for a closer look at this fascinating group of insects. Finally, guests will be able to relax around a campfire and enjoy songs and stories.

As co-hosts of this Star Party, members of Boy Scout Troop 228 will earn credit toward an astronomy merit badge.

“One of the purposes of the Boy Scouts of America is to train boys and young adults to be participating citizens,” said Eric Lehman, a committee member with Troop 228.  “Helping the Land Conservancy of West Michigan and the Grand Rapids Amateur Astronomy Association with this Star Party is a way for some of the boy scouts from Troop 228 to give something back to their community while they are learning more about their natural world.”

Registration for the “Star Party” event is required.  Please visit or call 616-451-9476.

Troop 228 is chartered by the Bostwick Lake Congregational Church and has been part of the Rockford community for 59 years.

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