Meteor Shower Watch returns to Aldergrove

Regional Park hosts stargazing and camping event on August 12

Photo credit: Stojan Stojanovski, Kristijan Gjoreski, Igor Nastoski / Ohrid Astronomy Association This amazing view of a Perseid meteor was captured by amateur astronomers Stojan Stojanovski, Kristijan Gjoreski and Igor Nastoski of the Ohrid Astronomy Association in Ohrid, Macedonia during the peak of the Perseid meteor shower on Aug. 12-13, 2015.

What is the Perseid meteor shower?

Is Pluto really a planet?

Find out from astronomers and space enthusiasts who will have telescopes aimed at the skies for the Meteor Shower Watch, Saturday, August 12, from 8 to 11 p.m. at Aldergrove Regional Park.

Guests will enjoy lantern-lit trails, games, crafts, storytelling and other entertainment.

The peak of the Perseid Meteor Shower will be on August 12. According to NASA meteor expert Bill Cooke, the Perseids are perhaps the most popular meteor shower of the year. Typical rates are about 80 meteors an hour, but in outburst years (such as in 2016) the rate can be between 150-200 meteors an hour. The meteor shower’s actual peak is around 1 p.m. EDT Aug. 12, which means that the night before and the night after will both have good rates. Cooke said the show would be slightly better in the predawn hours of Aug. 12, but that there’d be a decent show both nights.

For this one night only guests may also camp overnight at Aldergrove Regional Park to extend their star-gazing experience. Campers must arrive between 5 and 8 p.m.

Camping set up starts at 5 p.m. and the gate is closed after 11 p.m.

There will be no smoking, campfires, gas camp stoves, briquettes or generators due to high fire danger. Guests may cook in the designated communal area with a propane stove (unless Extreme fire rating).

Alcohol and drugs are prohibited.

Staff or security will be on duty all night and the gate will only open for emergency or special circumstances.

No vehicles permitted in tenting area and RVs in designated area only.

Aldergrove Elks will sell food Saturday evening and Sunday morning from their mobile food truck (cash only, all proceeds to charity).

Washrooms and drinking water will be available overnight.

Guests are asked to not leave barking dogs unattended at camp.

Quiet time is midnight. Only star gazing is permitted at the astronomy field south of parking lot.

Camps must be packed up by Sunday at 11 a.m. and please, “Pack it in, Pack it out.”

This all-ages event is free in 2017 to mark 50 years of regional parks. Drop by anytime before 11 p.m.

Meet at Aldergrove Bowl entrance on Lefeuvre Rd., Abbotsford.

For details see website www.metrovancouver.org (search ‘meteor shower watch’).

This special event is presented by Metro Vancouver Regional Parks with the Royal Astronomical Society of Canada.

For information, visit metrovancouver.org/events or call 604-530-4983.