Utah's observers of Mars — and galaxies, nebula, stars, comets and other cosmic wonders — might have to do without one of the state's most popular observing sites next year.
Star parties have been held at Little Mountain, located at the top of Emigration Canyon, since the 1970s. But these events could be coming to an end, says Nathaniel Goodman, vice president of the Salt Lake Astronomical Society.
"Construction on top of the mountain of a large cellular communications site effectively removes over half of the area on top, where star viewing has been held," he said.
"Another factor . . . will be the completion and opening by next year of the astronomical society's new Harmons Observatory out at Stansbury Park in Tooele County." This new observatory will replace the group's present observatory, with two large telescopes.
In what could be this year's last such events, star parties at Little Mountain are planned for the nights of July 28 and Aug. 25.