Hanging Christmas lights?
We're not about to tell you not to get into the festive spirit and forget the lights, but as you choose between the three nodding reindeers, Santa on the Sleigh or using them all you might like to consider the impacts of decorations on the natural dark environment.
By making simple choices, your celebrations can be jolly, bright and Dark Sky Sensitive.
* Remember less is best. This is not the time to win the battle of "who has the most (lights) in your street". Understated, elegant designs draw more compliments than jamming every festive light in your backyard, (plus a blow-up Santa, a reindeer holding yard and an Elf toymaking section.)
* Use traditional colours - ambers, reds, oranges and yellows - in your designs. These are far more warming to the soul and more friendly for our native flora and fauna than harsh white, blues, purples and greens..
* Turn off all lights at 11 pm, even on Christmas Eve. We promise Santa will still be able to find you, even in the dark. Besides, Rudolph is there! He has one job, and one job only.... let him light the way!
3 BIG wins for River Murray Dark Sky Reserve
1. River Murray Dark Sky Reserve is installing 10 telescope pads across the Reserve thanks to a $50,000 grant from the SA state government. The astronomer-friendly pads are 3x3 metre concrete pads, publicly accessible and free to use.
2. Second,y the SA Tourism Commission has installed a series of brown Dark Sky Reserve tourist signs on each major road into the Reserve. Makes it feel very real. This was another $50,000 project completed with thanks to the support of the council.
3. Mid Murray Council has recently adopted an Astro-Tourism Strategy.
RMSSR is also working with the local Council and SA Power Networks about replacement street lighting. There is concern that the proposed luminaires are ‘compliant’ in that they are shielded, but are in fact substantially brighter.