Goldendale Observatory Loses Dark Sky Designation
GOLDENDALE (AP) — Things have been looking up at Goldendale Observatory State Park.
A $1.5 million renovation is set to begin next month, and the observatory has a newly reconfigured telescope that gives visitors much better views of the night sky.
But the Yakima Herald-Republic says the observatory was quietly dropped from the International Dark-Sky Association's list of Dark Sky Parks late last year.
The Dark Sky Park designation, bestowed in 2010, made it unique in Washington. There are no other Dark Sky Parks in the state, and only 33 others in the country.
But the park was obligated to include educational programming about light pollution, maintain approved lighting on its grounds, and file annual reports to the association. There are questions about whether its staff has lived up to those obligations.