Dark Sky Park
North Carolina, USA
The Blue Ridge Observatory and Star Park is situated six miles west of Spruce Pine, North Carolina, in the Blue Ridge Mountains. The six-acre (2.4-hectare) site, surrounded by rugged mountain terrain and the Pisgah National Forest, is owned by Yancey County (NC) and managed by Mayland Community College. It shares the property with the EnergyXchange, a project in which methane waste gas emitted by an old landfill heats horticultural greenhouses and artists’ studios. MCC opened new public observatory and planetarium at the site in 2017, featuring a custom-built a 86-cm f/3.6 Newtonian telescope and a Meade 35-cm LX200 telescope for public viewing.