The closest you can get to seeing stars in New York is usually while looking up at the ceiling in Grand Central Terminal. But a number of organizations can help you get a view of the actual night sky, while also explaining what you’re seeing (or at least trying to see). Here are four go-to resources for those looking to learn more about the stars above us in NYC.
This group of amateur stargazing enthusiasts hosts observing events at parks and venues all of the city. Every Friday and Saturday night through August 6, you can join them on the plaza just north of the fountain at Lincoln Center. There are also regular events in Brooklyn Bridge Park, Prospect Park and on the High Line. You can find the full calendar here.
This free public program offered by the world-renowned university has a summer film and stargazing series that pairs space views with space-themed movies. The next event is on July 15 where they’ll be screening Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy starting at 7pm. After the film, there will be a short discussion of any relevant science in the movie (separating fact from fiction) and then guided stargazing with telescopes.
Inwood Astronomy’s Jason Kendall, who regularly appears on The Weather Channel, is offering two public events this month on the deck of the Intrepid where you can learn more about the stars. Kendall also leads guided stargazing nights in uptown Manhattan throughout the year and the popular StarFest in April.
This one may be cheating a bit, but it’s definitely a great option for those that want a night of stargazing without all the, you know, standing around outside stuff. The American Museum of Natural History hosts an event on the last Tuesday of every month in its planetarium that projects a live version of the night sky. You can learn more about the current locations of stars and planets from the comfort of your air-conditioned seat.