National Dark Sky Week

New Moon in April Each Year National Dark Sky Week

The National Dark Sky Week is celebrated in the United States every week of the new moon in April. This week-long celebration aims to promote the beauty of the night sky by encouraging people to turn off their lights, go outside, and stare at the starry night sky.

About the National Dark Sky Week

The National Dark Sky Week campaigns for important causes including the following:

  • The reduction of light pollution
  • Raising awareness about the effects of light pollution to the night sky
  • Encouraging the use of better lighting systems
  • Promoting the study of astronomy National Dark Sky Week

And to achieve these goals, people all over the country celebrate by learning about light pollution and telling people they know about it. People also take the celebration as their opportunity to spend a good time with their friends and family while viewing the beautiful night sky with less or even without light pollution. People also shout out on social media how they are participating in the celebration of this important week.


This weeklong event was started in 2003 by a high school student named Jennifer Barlow from Midlothian, Virginia. From that point onwards, the event became more and more popular each year that the participation rate quickly increase. The celebration has been endorsed by the Sky & Telescope, Astronomical League, American Astronomical Society, and the International Dark-Sky Association.


As mentioned earlier the National Dark Sky Week is celebrated every April during its new moon week. This means that the upcoming celebration of the National Dark Sky Week will be held from April 5 to 12 .

Why Celebrate

The following are the best things to do to make your celebration of the National Dark Sky Week as best as it can be:

To Reduce Light Pollution

With all our busy schedules and cities that don’t sleep, it is already so rare for us to see the beautiful night sky when there is light all around us. We do witness this sometimes when we go to rural areas. But if participate in the celebration of the National Dark Sky Week, you will be able to campaign for the reduction or elimination of light pollution so as to once again see the beautiful night sky even in the busy streets or in your homes within the city.

To Spend a Good Time with Family and Friends

Another good reason to celebrate this day is that this can be a good opportunity for you to spend a good tie with your family and friends as you all witness the beautiful night sky during this weeklong celebration.

National Dark Sky Week Celebration Ideas and Activities

The following are the best things to do to make your celebration of the National Dark Sky Week as best as it can be:

Enjoy the Night Sky with Your Friends and Family

One good idea for your celebration of this week is to choose a day, two, or more that you can spend time with your friends and family outside at night. But first, turn off all your lights in your home and go to the best spot where you can see the night sky. You can also prepare some foods or snacks beforehand so that you will be able to enjoy eating these foods while you converse about the night sky and light pollution.National Dark Sky Week

Spread the Word About Light Pollution

Another good thing to do for this week is to inform other people about light pollution and why it is important to see the dark sky. For starters, light pollution is a term that means excess artificial light that brightens up the night sky instead of being dark. It has several types including the following:

  1. Over-illumination: is the overuse of light exceeding what is necessary for efficiency and safety
  2. Skyglow: is the lighting produced by reflection of water molecules in the air and prevents the night sky to be fully seen
  3. Light clutter: is the lighting produced by the clustering of cities and roadways
  4. Light trespass: is the condition in which light is projected into places where it is not needed. This phenomenon makes it difficult to see the stars in the sky.
  5. Glare: is the phenomenon that cuases temporary impairments in human sight. This is most commonly induced by headlights of cars and street lamps.

Share on Social Media

In your celebration of the National Dark Sky Week, you should also not forget to use the social media platform to inform people about the celebration and to campaign for its cause. You must use the hashtag #NationalDarkSkyWeek or simply #DSW to let your friends and followers know that you are also participating in the celebration of this week.


  • “I am not an advocate of Enlightenment. On the contrary, I see it as a form of light pollution, which prevents us from seeing the stars.”— Roger Scruton
  • “When I came to New York and I opened the window of the thirty-fifth-floor apartment, there’s light pollution and fog, and I couldn’t see my star. So I drew it on my wrist with a pen, but it kept washing away. Then I went to a tattoo parlor on Second Avenue and had it done.”— Gisele Bundchen
  • “Smile. Give Earth the biggest smile you’ve got. See every glimmer of light in the scariest, darkest sky. And when people think you’re crazy, then you know you’ve accomplished something very few dare to try.” ― Lana M.H. Wilder
  • “You were the stars, and I was the dark sky behind you. Without dark sky, you couldn’t see the stars. I knew I was useful,” he says. “You’re essential.” ― Jenn Bennett, Starry Eyes
  • “For some time I watch the coming of the night? Above is the glistening galaxy of childhood, now hidden in the Western world by air pollution and the glare of artificial light; for my children’s children, the power, peace and healing of the night will be obliterated.” — Peter Matthiessen
  • “A very weighty argument is this namely, that neither does the light which descends from thence, chiefly upon the world, mix itself with anything, nor admit of dirtiness or pollution, but remains entirely, and in all things that are, free from defilement, admixture, and suffering.”— Saint Augustine
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