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Support for Dark Sky Community Recognition in Fredericksburg

September 1, 2018

I am helping the City come up with letters of support for the continued effort to improve outdoor lighting in our community be being recognized by the International Dark Sky Association as a Dark Sky Community.  We have been working this direction for some years here, beginning with a two year effort to get an Outdoor Lighting Ordinance. If you would like to submit a letter of support for this, see my example below, which I wrote as President of the Friends of Enchanted Rock.  Send me a PDF copy if you can, or snail mail copy to the City at 126 W Main Street, Fredericksburg TX 78624. The application says about letters of support: “…support for dark Skies from a wide range of community organizations such as chambers of commerce, local electrical utilities, IDA chapters, lighting retailers, homeowners associations, and others.”  I would add to that “Community volunteers interested in seeing this prestigious designation awarded to Fredericksburg.” The 2017 Supernova (Fireworks Galaxy) was taken by Ken in his Putnam Mountain Observatory west of Enchanted Rock SNA.

September 1, 2018

IDA Board of Directors, International Dark Sky Association, 3223 North First Street, Tucson, AZ 85719-2103

Dear IDA Board Members,

The Friends of Enchanted Rock has adopted Dark Sky education as a primary mission along with preservation and recreation. We are a partner with the Park staff in hosting Dark Sky events, including an annual Enchanted Rock Star Fest and star parties. Because Fredericksburg is the gateway to Enchanted Rock State Natural Area, we are also involved in the promotion of these objectives in that city. We heartily endorse the City of Fredericksburg’s application to be named an IDSA Dark Sky Community.

The Dark Sky movement initially came to Fredericksburg with some individual initiatives from a local astronomer, but the Dark Sky Team from Hill Country Alliance quickly picked up the ball and began the process which led to the adoption of an outdoor lighting ordinance by the City.  As a member of that team I found unqualified support from City Staff, who had already been requiring night sky friendly lighting in new commercial construction projects for some time. The proposed ordinance was drafted by Ken Kattner and presented to the City Council by myself as Co-President of the Friends and a resident of the City. The Friends continue to be involved in the movement with involvement in this application and in lobbying City Council members about the issues. Dark Sky tourism continues to grow, both at the Park and in the area generally.

Dark skies at Enchanted Rock are near and dear to our hearts, and the rapid growth of new construction and people in the Texas Hill Country make this effort critical for us.  We will continue to focus on this in partnership with City Staff and Council members.

Sincerely,

Robert C Deming, President

One Comment
  1. Oh i’d love to help with this, Robert- can i write something up and send it to you via whatsapp?

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