August 30 through September 1, 2019
Join astronomers, rangers, and historians as they come together for a three-day festival celebrating North Dakota’s starry nights and rich heritage! Stand under the expansive night sky that influenced cultures of American Indian tribes, inspired modern space exploration, and is still yours to experience today!
Theodore Roosevelt National Park and Historic Medora welcome you to evenings of star viewing,special presentations, rocket building and launching, children’s activities, and much more as we celebrate Dakota Nights!
Most activities are included with your park entry fee, except when otherwise noted.
Daytime Activities – Saturday & Sunday
People of all ages are welcome at all activities!
Discovery Dome Theater
Immerse yourself in films about outer space, planets, stars, and black holes!
Kids’ Crafts and Activities
Take part in FREE hands-on activities that help kids learn about astronomy and unleash their creativity.
Rocket Building and Launching
Build, paint, and launch a rocket! Rocket kits are $10.
Have you ever seen a sunspot? Safely view the sun (and its spots!) through telescopes and by other means.
Solar System Hikes
Start at the Sun and hike your way to Neptune. (Sorry, Pluto!) Learn about the planets in our solar system as you walk. Distance: 0.5 mile Difficulty: Easy
Friday, Saturday & Sunday
Get an up-close look at stars, star clusters, and planets in the telescope field at Peaceful Valley Ranch. Listen as astronomers and rangers share stories about the night sky.
Cottonwood Campground Amphitheater
Each night of the festival, a guest speaker offers their unique take on the night sky. Topics of past programs have included astronomy, star stories, cultural values and significance of the night sky, natural darkness, and we even heard what it’s like to be in space from an actual NASA astronomer.