The Preserve at Walnut Springs is the perfect place to enjoy star gazing year round! As a founding member of the Hill Country Night Sky Co-Op, created by Hill Country Alliance, homeowners at the Preserve are practicing sound outdoor lighting management with the intention to eliminate light escaping over the horizon from outdoor fixtures. With each new home that is built, owners are provided a night sky friendly list of lighting choices for their home’s exterior. As a significant landowner of 2,030 acres, the Preserve and it’s homeowners are protecting the night skies for the enjoyment of future generations.
“Texas is rapidly becoming a national leader in the dark sky movement,” says John Barentine, manager of IDA’s Dark Sky Places Program. “There are some really dedicated folks in Texas’ parks and communities taking significant steps to protect the night skies and educate policymakers and the public about the importance of preserving one of the state’s most precious natural resources.” Recently our favorite hill country hiking spot, Enchanted Rock, was awarded the highest “Gold-tier” night skies status by IDA. Joining Big Bend National Park and the City of Dripping Springs as the only locations in Texas to have earned the coveted Dark Sky Places recognition.
To learn more about stargazing opportunities in Texas state parks and night sky darkness ratings as measured by the Bortle Scale, visit: http://www.tpwd.state.tx.us/spdest/programs/dark_skies/. For more information about the International Dark Sky Places Program, visit http://www.darksky.org/international-dark-sky-places/about-ids-places. More information about light pollution and the negative effects of light on visibility, wildlife, human health and energy use is available on the IDA website at http://www.darksky.org.
Hill Country landowners, businesses and communities who would like to advance a spirit of cooperation and commitment to protecting nights skies have created the Hill Country Night Sky Coop. All it takes to join is a simple promise to be a good neighbor and responsible with outdoor lighting choices. Sign up today!