Jasper Dark Sky Festival

Celebrating Jasper's distinction as the largest accessible Dark Sky Preserve in the world!

October is Dark Sky month in Jasper! Home to the world’s largest accessible Dark Sky preserve, Jasper by day offers a universe of outdoor fun in a wilderness playground.

At night, Jasper is a stunning wilderness of stars. Jasper is home to the world’s largest accessible Dark Sky Preserve. Take it all in during the Jasper Dark Sky Festival. 

They're not just looking at stars, but teaching the science of astronomy, and having fun with daytime activities like the bottle rocket launch.

Event Highlights, Oct 13 - 22, 2023

With everything from self-guided experiences to helicopter tours, formal dinners and cocktail soirees and of course, the signature Symphony Under the Stars, the Jasper Dark Sky Festival offers up daily—and NIGHTLY—star-themed entertainment of all kinds.

Here are some of the highlights from 2022, to give you a taste of the experience:

Oct 14

Fireside Chat - Indigenous song, storytelling and conversation, led by a Knowledge Keeper

Cocktails and Constellations - climb aboard a 1930s style open-top bus for a guided tour of the stars, complete with refreshments!

Dining with Aurora - a flavourful sensory experience, in the dark

Oct 15

Intro to Astro Photography - learn about night photography from the pros

Jasper SkyStram Star Sessions - view the stars up close, with a dinner hosted by astronomy experts at the top of Jasper SkyTram

Symphony Under the Stars - listen to the Edmonton Symphony Orchestra, live, underneath the night sky!

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Oct 20

Live music by candlelight - a performance by CHARMS (Denis and Megan Dufresne)

Oct 21

An evening with Seth Shostak - Shostak, an American astronomer from the SETI Institute, ranges on the topic of space exploration

Transforming ideas into reality: the story of Blue Origin with Rob Meyerson - Amazon's lead aerospace engineer talks space travel

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Oct 22

Keynote panel - Shawna Pandya hosts a talk with Jameel Janjua, Rob Meyerson and Emma Louden on the boundaries of space exploration

ᐸᐦᑭᓯᒧᐣ pahkisimon - Cree for sunset, this free event celebrates sunset, hosted by Teneil Whiskeyjack

Weekly/daily experiences include:
  • "Bio Blitz" wildlife observation project (run by the WISEST)
  • planetarium & telescope tours with The Jasper Planetarium
  • helicopter tours
  • night sky photography workshops
  • "Animals of the Night" hikes
  • yoga under the stars
  • geocaching/treasure hunt

The most up-to-date festival information can be found on the Jasper Dark Sky website.

Know before you go

Jasper was designated a dark sky preserve in March 2011 thanks to the optimal conditions and minimal light pollution in the area. 

To respect the dark sky experience, keep the lights low: if you're bringing a headlamp for night time activities, grab one with a red light setting (red light is not as strong or disruptive to the eyes.)

Nights can be cool in October, especially when you're exploring space; be sure to bring layers!