Seeing Stars! Dark-sky camping for the best stargazing

Airstream Life

Fall 2023 Issue– “When we have public stargazing programs at the observatory, most people don’t care about the nebulae, galaxies and double stars that are really far away, but they’re excited to see Jupiter, the Big Dipper, Mars, Saturn’s rings, and everyday constellations like Cassiopeia and Pisces.” – Eric McHenry, International President of Airstream Club International and Board President of the Robert Ferguson Observatory

A Cosmic Experience Awaits

57 ° Magazine

July 17, 2023 – While the exquisite fruits of Sonoma County’s soil draw visitors from around the world, there is also endless wonder to be found in the county’s skies.

MJ Ward, laughs as she performs with The Social Construct during a concert and silent auction to benefit the Robert Ferguson Observatory called "The Sky's the Limit" held at the Phoenix Theater, Saturday, May 6, 2023, in Petaluma. (Darryl Bush / For The Press Democrat)

Teen musicians rock Petaluma’s Phoenix Theater to benefit Robert Ferguson Observatory

Photo Credit: Darryl Bush for The Press Democrat

The Press Democrat

May 10, 2023 – Teen musicians rocked out in Petaluma May 6 in support of an organization helping young people reach for the stars.

Craters and other markings are visible as the supermoon rises as seen from Olympia, Wash., on Thursday, Aug. 11, 2022. This full moon is also known as the sturgeon supermoon, and is the last of four supermoons — which occur when the moon is full when it is at its closest location to the earth — in 2022. (AP Photo/Ted S. Warren)

Meteor shower, ‘Flower Moon’ in the skies this week above Northern California

Photo Credit: Ted S. Warren, AP Photo

The Press Democrat

May 4, 2023 – “The significance of having several events in the sky at once is simply that it is more exciting to go out and look up at the sky,” Rachel Freed, amateur astronomer, educator and docent at Robert Ferguson Observatory in Kenwood, wrote in an email.

From Planning to Stargazing: Everything You Need to Know About DIY Backyard Observatories


April 14, 2023 – For many telescope enthusiasts, space photographers, and amateur astronomers, stargazing is more than just a hobby – it’s a passion.

The Lyrids Are Our First Chance to See Some Shooting Stars This Year

Photo Credit: Jeff Sullivan via Flickr, CC BY-NC-ND 2.0

Bay Nature

April 13, 2023 – Born of comets, meteors are the little specks of dust that could.

Five striking sparks winners to be awarded telescopes

The Community Voice

March 24, 2023 – This is the 38th year of the competition, a program facilitated by the Robert Ferguson Observatory that awards telescopes to Sonoma County students to promote science education and interest in astronomy.

At This Sonoma Park, You Can Walk to Pluto

Bay Nature

March 22, 2023 – The cosmos awaits you at Sugarloaf Ridge State Park.

3 Sonoma students honored by astronomy program

Sonoma Index Tribune

April 6, 2022 – Three Sonoma Valley students were awarded telescopes Thursday by Striking Sparks, a program that promotes science education and interest in astronomy.

2022 Striking Sparks Winners

The Community Voice

April 15, 2022 – Five Students Awarded Telescopes at the Striking Sparks Ceremony.

Astronomy for all in Kenwood

Sonoma County Gazette

January 21, 2022 – Robert Ferguson Observatory Announces Access Program for Low-Income Families.

Robert Ferguson Observatory joins Museums for All

Sonoma Index-Tribune

Photo Credit: Robbi Pengelly / Index-Tribune

January 20, 2022 – The Robert Ferguson Observatory has joined Museums for All, a signature access program of the Institute of Museum and Library Services, administered by the Association of Children’s Museums, to encourage people of all backgrounds to visit museums regularly and build lifelong museum-going habits.

Explore the night sky at Robert Ferguson Observatory in Kenwood

The Press Democrat

Photo Credit: Kent Porter / The Press Democrat

October 1, 2021 – On a recent weekday night inside a dark, open-roofed dome at Robert Ferguson Observatory, longtime volunteer David Kensiski turned a 40-inch-diameter telescope toward the first planetary nebula he discovered when he was 15 years old.

RFO opens up the eyes of the world

Sonoma Index-Tribune

July 8, 2021 – Even the heavens are glad the pandemic is in remission — with well over half of Sonoma County fully vaccinated, it’s time to reopen the doors of the big scopes to the public at Robert Ferguson Observatory on Saturday, July 10.

Firefighters build defenses to protect Robert Ferguson Observatory from Glass fire

The Press Democrat

Photo Credit: Christopher Chung / The Press Democrat

September 30, 2020 – Tree branches were still smoldering on the ground about 20 yards behind Robert Ferguson Observatory on Wednesday afternoon, their moon-like ash providing blips of contrast to the blackened hillsides where firefighters had spent two days doing controlled burns.

Stars in Our Eyes

Northbay Biz

December 26, 2019 – “The Robert Ferguson Observatory is one of Sonoma County’s best kept secrets.” 

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