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Lick Observatory at night
  • Photographers enjoying a spectecular sunset at #PhotoNight on September 30th, 2017. Photo by (c) Michael Coustier.

2020 Photography Nights Canceled
After much consideration, and the complex issues of health and safety for the public, staff, and volunteers of our Lick Observatory community, we have made the difficult decision to cancel all of this year's summer series of events. While we are certainly disappointed and recognize that you will be too, we are excited to shift our focus to new virtual programming. Going forward we will be sharing our science goals and discoveries with you in creative ways over the summer. Sign up to receive email communication about our virtual events programming by emailing social@ucolick.org.


Photography Nights at Lick Observatory

 

At the summit of Mt. Hamilton, above the city of San Jose, we have spectacular views of the night sky. Due to Lick Observatory's popularity with photographers, we are organizing photography events this year.

Photography Night dates in 2020:

  • Saturday, May 16th (gates open at 7:00 pm)
  • Friday, June 19th (gates open at 7:30 pm)
  • Friday, July 17th (gates open at 7:30 pm)
  • Friday August 14th (gates open at 7:00 pm)
  • Saturday, September 12th (gates open at 6:30 pm)

We will open up the main building after normal visiting hours for photographers and their equipment. We will have the 36-inch Great Refractor telescope in a photogenic position, with the dome open, weather permitting. (Note: viewings or taking pictures through the telescope will not be offered at this event.) Photographers will also be able to set up their camera equipment and/or telescopes in the parking lot in order to capture the exterior of the main building, the San Jose city lights, and stars in the night sky. Drones may not be flown on the Observatory property.


Tickets

Update 2020 Apr 14: Due to the COVID-19 situation, the 2020 Photography Nights have been cancelled. Tickets will not go on sale.

Admission fee: $ 60.00 per vehicle (one ticket per vehicle, 4 people maximum per vehicle)
Tickets will go on sale on May 13th, 2020 at Noon PDT at ucsctickets.com

We have space for a maximum of 30 vehicles, up to four people per vehicle / ticket (buses, RVs, and trailers are not permitted to the Photography Night). In the event of poor weather, registrants will be notified of event cancellation via e-mail on the day of the event, and your tickets will be refunded. Please subscribe to our photography events mailing list (see below) in order to receive the pre-sale link and access code to purchase a ticket.


Need inspiration for what to shoot?
Check out the Lick Observatory Flickr collection and Instagram feed for ideas.


Driving to Lick Observatory
Allow a one hour drive from San Jose. Please drive carefully; the road is scenic, but winding. There are no gas or automotive services on Mount Hamilton Road, so please plan accordingly. Find more travel information here.


Schedule for May 16th, 2020

7:00 pm Gates open for event: sunset photography, 36-inch Refractor dome open
7:00 - 9:00 pm   Gift Shop is open
8:17 pm Sunset
8:30 pm Gates close - all photographers must have arrived by this time
9:15 pm 12 degree twilight (nautical twilight)
9:54 pm 18 degree twilight (astronomical twilight)
11:30 pm Main building and 36-inch Refractor dome will close
12:13 am Moon sets (waxing crescent)
12:30 am Photography event ends (post office lobby will remain open for access to restrooms and vending machines)

Schedule for June 19th, 2020

7:30 pm Gates open for event: sunset photography, 36-inch Refractor dome open
7:30 - 9:30 pm    Gift Shop is open
8:38 pm Sunset
9:00 pm Gates close - all photographers must have arrived by this time
9:40 pm 12 degree twilight (nautical twilight)
10:24 pm 18 degree twilight (astronomical twilight)
12:00 am Main building and 36-inch Refractor dome will close
1:00 am Photography event ends (post office lobby will remain open for access to restrooms and vending machines)

Schedule for July 17th, 2020

7:30 pm Gates open for event: sunset photography, 36-inch Refractor dome open
7:30 - 9:30 pm    Gift Shop is open
8:33 pm Sunset
9:00 pm Gates close - all photographers must have arrived by this time
9:33 pm 12 degree twilight (nautical twilight)
10:14 pm 18 degree twilight (astronomical twilight)
12:00 am Main building and 36-inch Refractor dome will close
1:00 am Photography event ends (post office lobby will remain open for access to restrooms and vending machines)

Schedule for August 14st, 2020

7:00 pm Gates open for event: sunset photography, 36-inch Refractor dome open
7:00 - 9:00 pm    Gift Shop is open
8:07 pm Sunset
8:30 pm Gates close - all photographers must have arrived by this time
9:01 pm 12 degree twilight (nautical twilight)
9:36 pm 18 degree twilight (astronomical twilight)
11:30 pm Main building and 36-inch Refractor dome will close
12:30 am Photography event ends (post office lobby will remain open for access to restrooms and vending machines)

Schedule for September 12th, 2020

6:30 pm Gates open for event: sunset photography, 36-inch Refractor dome open
6:30 - 8:30 pm    Gift Shop is open
7:25 pm Sunset
8:00 pm Gates close - all photographers must have arrived by this time
8:16 pm 12 degree twilight (nautical twilight)
8:47 pm 18 degree twilight (astronomical twilight)
11:00 pm Main building and 36-inch Refractor dome will close
12:00 am Photography event ends (post office lobby will remain open for access to restrooms and vending machines)


Join the Photography Events Mailing List

If you'd like to receive information about Photography Nights at Lick Observatory, please join our Photography Events mailing list. Subscribers of this list will receive the pre-sale link and pre-sale access code to purchase a ticket about one month prior to the respective event.

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