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Night Sky Program and afternoon workshop offered at Fort Larned NHS
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Jerelyn Ramirez, president of the Kansas Astronomical Observers, Wichita, shares a funnel projector she built herself to observe the sun.

Fort Larned NHS – On Saturday, Feb. 22, the Fort Larned staff will have a night sky program including the measuring of light pollution at the fort. Jerelyn Ramirez, president of the Kansas Astronomical Observers, Wichita, will be our special speaker that night. Ramirez will be bringing the proper implements to measure light pollution. Even if there are clouds blocking our view of the stars above, we will still have a good program indoors.

Ramirez’ program will run from 7:00 p.m. to 8:30 p.m. in the Visitor Center. During Ramirez’ program she will use her equipment to measure the light indoors. The fun will continue outside where we will be able to measure the amount of light pollution in our night sky. Ramirez will also discuss a project called Globe at Night — including how you can be involved. In the afternoon before Ramirez’ night program there will be a Galileoscope Workshop from 3:00 – 4:30 p.m. Citizen scientists or anyone interested in the magic of night sky can make a scope to keep. There are only 24 slots open and the participants must be 10 years old or older. The program is free, but you must make a reservation in advance if you want to assemble a scope to take home. 

In the accompanying photo, Ramirez is sharing a funnel projector she built herself to observe the sun. A yellow filter has been added to the eyepiece which changes the color of the sun from white to yellow, making it easier to see sun spots. The funnel projector makes it easier for a group of people to see at once when you have partly cloudy skies; when the Sun ducks behind a cloud it will limit how many can view through the eyepiece one at a time using a solar filter.

The fort staff strives to provide opportunities for the public to observe the beautiful night sky and the mysteries of the night sky. All events and activities are free.  For reserving a spot at the Galileoscope Workshop please call 620-285-6911.

Fort Larned National Historic Site is located six miles west of Larned on Kansas Highway 156.  Information on visiting is on the internet at, or by calling 620-285-6911, or email to  For information on area tourism partners, lodging, dining, and community services go to or call (620) 285-6916.