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PARK AFTER DARK: Moonwalk & Stargazing Party

This program has been canceled due to air quality and hazy skies.

Join us for a moonlit hike and telescope observation!


Thursday, June 29, 2023


8:30pm - 10:30pm


Lemon Hill Mansion
Lemon Hill Drive
Philadelphia, PA 19130

Our moonwalk and stargazing series continues as we await the appearance of July’s “Buck Moon”. According to the Farmers Almanac, July’s full moon is called the “Buck Moon” because the antlers of male deer (bucks) are in full-growth mode at this time. It is also sometimes referred to as the Salmon Moon, a Tlingit term indicating when fish returned to the area, and the Thunder Moon, referring to the stormy summer weather.

First, we’ll use the moonlight to guide us on a short hike on the Lemon Hill Rim Trail, appreciating nature lit by the glowing moon. Using minimal artificial light, we’ll let our eyes adjust to look for bats and nocturnal creatures who take advantage of moonlight to scour the ground for their next meal.

Next we’ll turn our attention to the moon itself by ending the hike with a guided moon and planet observation. Novice and experienced astronomers alike will be given insights and tips by experienced instructor Buddy Muhler. Each attendee will have the chance to travel close up to the moon’s surface by looking through Buddy’s high-powered telescope! Buddy will discuss the lunar cycles, point out interesting visible surface features such as dark gray mares (seas) and white reflective highlands. We’ll gaze at planets and discuss other astronomical wonders of the night sky.

If you’re a lunar lunatic, this is an evening not to miss!

Estimated distance: 2 miles
Level: easy to moderate
Terrain: combination of flat open parkland and hilly trails

IMPORTANT: This is a night hike and after a short intro talk, we will leave promptly. Please arrive at the departure location at scheduled time.  We cannot guarantee latecomers will be able join after the group has departed.

TICKET PRICES: Pay what you can – $10, $15, or $20
[ Not sure what to pay? Please refer to this Sliding Scale Pricing FAQ for additional info. ]


  • This hike is roughly two miles in length over a combination of open parkland and hilly terrain (easy-moderate exertion).
  • Appropriate for adults and families with children ages 6 & up. Minors must be registered and accompanied by an adult.
  • Attendees are encouraged to bring their own telescopes or high powered binoculars.
  • Please dress according to weather conditions and wear sturdy walking / hiking footwear.
  • Please bring your own water and snacks (drinking water is not available in the park).
  • Friendly dogs on leash are welcome.
  • We will use moonlight whenever possible, but for portions of the trail, we recommend bringing flashlight, headlamp, or fully charged smartphone.
  • There are bathrooms available at the beginning and end of the hike if absolutely necessary

There is plenty of free parking available in the park.  As always, NEVER leave valuables in your car!

COVID-19 PROTOCOLS:  By registering for this event you are agreeing to follow ALL of these protocols:

  • This event has limited capacity. Please only register if you fully intend to attend and let us know if you need to cancel ASAP.
  • If you or anyone in your household are exhibiting COVID-19 systems, please stay home.

GUIDE BIO: Buddy Muhler is a passionate astronomer and science educator. He has over 15 years experience operating telescopes and educating the public on astronomy, first at The Franklin Institute and now in his current position with The Academy of Natural Sciences.

In case of inclement weather or cloudy conditions, the event will be will be RESCHEDULED two days later on THURSDAY (same time). If conditions persist, event will be cancelled and attendees are eligible for a full refund.