Festival Highlights & Hours
StarLight Festival Hours:
Saturday, May 24th from 10am - 11pm
Sunday, May 25th from 10am - 11pm
The 2014 StarLight Festival will be held at the Northwoods Resort & Conference Center, located at 40650 Village Drive, Big Bear Lake, California.
The Ballroom: An amazing array of speakers will share their insights on space exploration, robots, the Sun, and more in the first floor ballroom of the resort. And when we say amazing, we mean amazing! Hear one of America's true heroes, Story Musgrave, talk about being an astronaut back in the day, or listen to SETI's Seth Shostak discuss the probabilities of "finding ET" in our search for extraterrrestrial intelligence. Linda Spilker of JPL will enlighten you on our latest discoveries about Saturn, and Ellyne Kinney-Spano, the Image Processing Science Lead for OSIRIS-ReX, will talk about how us non-scientist types can become involved in the research surrounding the asteroid, Bennu. Then there's Andre Bormanis, the science research director for the current hit series, Cosmos, a Space-Time Odyssey, or David Levy, the discoverer of 23 comets, including Comet Shumaker-Levy 9, made infamous by slamming into Jupiter back in 1994. Yes, the StarLight Festival has an amazing speaker line-up...make sure you plan to stay both days!
Upstairs Conference Center: The Jet Propulsion Laboratory (JPL/NASA) will be on hand in the upstairs conference center with multiple exhibit pieces, including Moon rocks, models of spacecraft, aerogel, and satellites; and Astronomers Without Borders will introduce you to astronomy around the globe with a special media presentation. The art of Wally Pacholka and beautiful space jewelry will be upstairs as well, and so will our special STEM speakers venue...it will be a busy, happenin' place!
Outdoors you will find the STEM Zone...a tent dedicated to students and STEM (science, technology, engineering & math) education. Kids of all ages can build their own Saturn and planetary lander, or learn about impact cratering and meteorites vs meteorwrongs. Surrounding the STEM Zone will be a plethora of tents with exhibitors from the world of science & astronomy. See how a telescope is made, and then look through them yourself both day and night to see the Sun in all its glory, or beautiful deep sky objects like the giant globular star cluster, M13, or our sister galaxy, Andromeda.
Big Bear Solar Observatory: Get a chance to see the inner workings of the BBSO, home to the world's largest aperture (and highest resolution) solar telescope. The Big Bear Solar Observatory is usually closed to the public, and tours are rare. Visit the BBSO booth for free tickets. Space is limited, so get your tickets early!
Hungry? We hear that Mike Murray's BBQ is the best on the mountain, and he will be cooking up some great food on-site. Dominos will also be there so that you can grab a quick piece of fresh pizza, and the Copper Q, a Village institution on Pine Knot, will be at the Festival to round out your refreshment choices with fresh snacks & drinks.
Kids have a bit too much energy? Let them burn some of it off in our bounce houses while you sit in the shade of an umbrella and enjoy the show.
Once evening falls, all of our telescopes will be turned to the heavens. Get great views of Saturn, Mars, Jupiter and even a comet or two. Stick around and enjoy the ambiance created by live music from Arizona's own Stephen Pike. Stroll from scope to scope, wind down under the amazing skies of Big Bear, and end the day on a contemplative note.