Be kind to your neighbor. Turn off, dim, control or shade your outdoor lights please. There are great lighting tips for those who live in the valley on our Light Pollution flyer
The Night Sky Friendly Business program recognizes those with appropriate outdoor lighting. Businesses and organizations can show their support for the very popular Dark Sky Community designation by being Night Sky Friendly.
Merit winners receive a certificate and window sticker; they may use the Dark Sky Friendly Business logo in their advertising; may receive publicity in the press; are listed on this website and on a plaque posted in the Borrego Springs library in recognition of responsible and environmentally sensitive approach to preserving the beauty of Borrego’s night sky for all to enjoy. Any business or organization with a physical presence in the Borrego Valley may apply using the Business Application form which is available here or may be requested by calling 760-767-3052.

For more information on Dark Sky compliant lighting, download our Lighting Standards for the Borrego Valley.

For appropriate lighting, Dan Wright (left), owner of The Springs RV Park and Resort, accepts the Night Sky Friendly Business certificate from Borrego Dark Sky Coalition member, Jim Rickard.

Borrego Springs is the only Dark Sky Community certified in California by the International Dark Sky Association. This recognition brings many visitors to the valley, seeking a view of the stars which is no longer visible in most urban areas.

Businesses and organizations in the area may apply for the Night Sky Friendly Business program.
Sky Calendar - August through November 2017
(for Borrego Springs, California)
Aug. 7  Mon.  Full moonrise 7:47 p. m, sunset 7:40 p.m. 
Aug. 12  Sat.  Perseid meteor shower 
Aug. 21  Mon.  Solar eclipse max at 10:24 a.m. in Borrego Springs 
Sept. 5  Tues.  Full moonrise 7:01 p.m., sunset 7:06 p.m.  
Sept. 22  Fri.  Fall begins, sunrise: 6:33a.m., sunset 6:43 p.m. 
Sept. 26  Tues.  Saturn and Moon close together in the evening 
Beginning of Oct.    Sunrise 6:40 a.m., sunset 6:30 p.m. PDT 
Oct. 5  Thurs.  Mars and Venus close together in the morning 
Oct. 5  Thurs.  Full moon rises at 6:49 p.m., sunset 6:25 p.m.  
Oct. 14  Sat.  Stargazing for the public at 7:30 p.m. 
Oct. 19-22  Weekend  Nightfall — Riverside Astronomical Society 
Oct. 21  Sat.  Orionid Meteor shower peaks after midnight 
Nov. 3  Fri.  Full moon rises at 5:01 p.m., sunset 4:53 p.m. 
Nov. 5  Sun.  Daylight Savings ends at 2:00 a.m. 
Nov. 17  Fri.   Leonid meteor shower peaks after midnight 
Nov. 18  Sat.  Stargazing for the public at 7:30 p.m. 
End of Nov.    Sunrise 6:39 a.m., sunset 4:38 p.m. PST 

The Perseids are the most active and brightest meteor shower of the year. It can release “shooting stars” from Jul 17 to Aug 24. At its peak on the night of August 12 (best after midnight), the show can be amazing, with 60 or more meteors per hour. Moonlight will block out some of the fainter meteors, but the Perseids are so bright and numerous that it should be a good show.

The evening “star” all summer, in the constellation Virgo, is Jupiter. Much dimmer is Saturn, visible in the southern sky between Sagittarius (the Teapot) and the head of Scorpio. The moon passes very close to Jupiter the evening of June 2, and close to Saturn on September 26.

Mars is sinking into the sunset as June begins, return in the morning as September ends. Venus is high in the morning sky but sinks daily toward the sunrise. Venus and Mars shake hand on October 5 as they pass in the morning sky – Mars headed up, and Venus sinking into the morning glare.

We invite you to join us for stargazing on Saturday, October 14 and Saturday, November 18 at 7:30 behind the Lutheran Church. (Details in the Calendar listing)

Orionids on October 21, and the Leonids on November 16/17 are both close to new moon and thus enjoy perfect conditions for viewing. After midnight rates of 20 and 15 per hour, respectively, can be expected. But strays can appear October 4 to14 and November 5 to 30.

A great opportunity to view the Orionids is at the annual Nightfall Star Party of the Riverside Astronomical Society. This group of avid and well-equipped star gazers will be at Palm Canyon Resort the weekend of Oct 19/22. Why not take a red flashlight, stroll around awhile and count meteors? Information is at nightfallstarparty.com.

As Jupiter sets shortly after the sun in October, Saturn takes over as the bright “star” low in the Southwestern evening. Watch as it sinks behind the San Ysidro range earlier each night. Just after sunset on Monday November 20, watch for Saturn, a crescent moon and Mercury close together.

Meanwhile, in the predawn an unusual pairing of red Mars and bright Venus can be spotted almost due East the hour before dawn during October. Watch October 5 when Venus seems to run into Mars, he headed up, and she down. Mars will remain visible, being the morning star in the east before dawn all of November.


By Dr. Jim and Grace

 COALITION MEMBERS are: Betsy Knaak (chair), Grace Rickard (vice chair), Eli Hanks, Bill Hanks, Dorothy Hogan, Dennis Mammana, Jim Rickard, Sally Theriault, and Sam Webb.
 The Coalition is facilitated by, but not a part of, the Anza Borrego Desert Natural  History Association (ABDNHA).

 Contact: Borrego Springs Dark Sky Coalition 
 c/o Anza-Borrego Desert Natural History Association
 PO Box 310, Borrego Springs, CA 92004
 760-767-3052 (leave message) or email BorregoDarkSkies@gmail.com

 Night sky header and portrait photography © Tom Hogan tomhoganimages.com
 Design: Dorothy Hogan