On September 28, 2004 at approximately 1:00 pm CST, a declaration was made creating a unified Cypress Hills Dark-Sky Preserve. It was signed at the Cypress Hills West Block Ranger's Station in Saskatchewan, Canada and includes Cypress Hills Centre Block (SK), Cypress Hills West Block (SK), Cypress Hills West Block (AB) and Fort Walsh National Historic Site (SK). Cypress Hills Interprovincial Park (CHIPP) is now the largest Dark-Sky Preserve in Canada with a total of 39,600 hectares (97,800 acres).
The signing took place as part of the Canadian Parks Council Conference, where about 70 park managers from all across Canada and the northwest U.S. were in attendance to witness this historical event. The Dark-Sky Preserve was formed through a partnership of Saskatchewan Environment, Alberta Community Development, Canada Parks agency and the Royal Astronomical Society of Canada (RASC). Representing the RASC at the ceremony were Bob King (Calgary, AB), Vance Petriew (Regina, SK) and Richard Huziak (Saskatoon, SK). Park Managers Brad Mason (CHIPP SK) , Rick Goett (CHIPP SK), Julie MacDougall (CHIPP AB) and David Rohatensky (Ft. Walsh) are delighted at the declaration and look forward to protecting their natural dark skies environmentally, historically and culturally for park visitors to enjoy.
Cypress Hills Interprovincial Park Centre Block has been the home of the annual Saskatchewan Summer Star Party (SSSP) for the past 8 years. Amateur astronomers from all over the world come to the SSSP to enjoy the dark skies and natural beauty the park has to offer.
Clear and Dark Skies on behalf of:
Saskatchewan Light Pollution Abatement Committee RASC - Regina Centre
Saskatchewan Light Pollution Abatement Committee RASC - Saskatoon Centre
Chair, Light Pollution Abatement Committee RASC - Calgary Centre