NWSF Information

NORTHWOODS STARFEST 2022
Hobbs Observatory
Beaver Creek Reserve
Fall Creek, Wisconsin
August 26-28, 2022

Sponsored by the Chippewa Valley Astronomical Society (CVAS).

Online NWSF registration and t-shirt order form.

Mail-in NWSF registration form.

Mail-in NWSF t-shirt order form.


Join us for Northwoods Starfest (NWSF), August 26-28, 2022 at Hobbs Observatory, located in the Beaver Creek Reserve (BCR) four miles north of Fall Creek, Wisconsin.

Adults (13 and over) $95 (if received on or before 8/12/2022), $105 after 8/12/2022.

Students (5 through 12) $75

Child (under 5) No charge

For those wishing to stay onsite, accommodations at BCR include Cedar Lodge and five cabins. Cedar Lodge provides a common area, bathrooms, showers, and two attached bunkhouses.  Cabins do not have bathrooms, but there is a large bathroom/shower house available for all guests.  Towels/linens are not provided.

Due to the continuing COVID situation, we will again limit bunk house and cabin occupancy to families or groups who are willing to share the same space. The private rooms, bunk houses, and cabins are allocated on a first-come basis. If you are part of a group staying together in a bunkhouse or cabin, please indicate the group on the registration form under the “Special Requests”.

  • As of 08/11/2022 all onsite cabin accommodations have been reserved:
    • Cedar Lodge – private room 1 RESERVED (S)
    • Cedar Lodge – private room 2 RESERVED (K)
    • Cedar Lodge – east bunkhouse RESERVED (N)
    • Cedar Lodge – west bunkhouse RESERVED (H)
    • Oak Cabin Reserved (L)
    • Pine Cabin Reserved (V)
    • Maple Cabin Reserved (K&R)
    • Birch Cabin Reserved (D)
    • Norway Cabin Reserved (S)

Tents and small campers may be set up along the edges of the observing field or in other open areas on the BCR grounds. There is a very limited amount of room for larger RVs – please let us know if you are bringing an RV. There are no RV electrical hookups.

For those who prefer more plush overnight accommodations, there are two hotels located 10 miles (15 minutes) west of BCR near the US 53/WI 312 intersection.

A large field in front of the observatory to set up for observing. The skies are quite dark. Limited AC power is available for the observing field.

In addition to the featured speakers on Friday and Saturday evenings, NWSF attendees are invited to share a short talk on Saturday afternoon. If you have something astronomical to share: a presentation, a unique telescope, or anything else that people might enjoy, we encourage you to reserve a short talk session time on Saturday afternoon. Please limit your presentation to 25 minutes maximum. If you have a short talk to share please note the title on the mail-in registration or in the comments box on the online registration.

A swap fest is held late Saturday afternoon. Bring whatever astronomy gear you’d like to sell or swap.

The BCR campus offers a nature center, nature store, butterfly house, hiking trails, and an obstacle course which NWSF attendees have access to at no additional charge.

Saturday also offers an on-your-own activity to visit the Eau Claire Planet Walk in downtown Eau Claire at Phoenix Park. An excellent Farmer’s Market at the park runs until 1 pm.

In an effort to maximize NWSF attendees’ observing experience, the observatory will not be open to the general public on Saturday night as it has in past years during NWSF.

Beaver Creek Reserve has a strict pet policy: “In the interest of health and safety of all our visitors and wildlife, pets are not allowed on the Reserve.” Please leave your pets at home.

Please let us know if you have any other special needs before NWSF and we’ll do our best to accommodate them. If you have a certain dietary requirement, you are welcome to use the refrigerator/freezer and kitchen in the main lodge to store and prepare your own meals.

Registration fee includes BCR camp fees (camping, bunkhouse, or cabin accommodations – see photos above), Friday midnight snacks, Saturday brunch, Saturday dinner, Saturday midnight snacks, and Sunday breakfast.

Cancellations will be honored through August 18th (cancellation of online registrations incurs a $0.30 cancellation charge).

NWSF t-shirts are in addition to registration fees. Costs are $16 (S/M/L/XL), $18 (2XL), $19 (3XL). T-shirt orders must be received by Tuesday, August 9th.  A limited number of t-shirts may be available for purchase at check-in

For more information or questions, email CVAS at: contact@cvastro.org


NWSF 2022 SCHEDULE OF EVENTS

Friday, August 26th

3:00 pm – 5:00 pm — Registration (Observatory Office).

5:30 pm to 6:30 pm — Brats and hot dogs (Main Lodge). Cost is not included in the registration fee!

  • Brats: $3
  • Hot Dogs: $2
  • Soda: $.50
  • Chips: $.50

7:30 pm — Featured speaker (Main Lodge)

  • Bob King (aka Astro Bob)
  • Topic: Carnival of Animals, Gods, and Exotica — the Origin of the Constellations.

9:00 pm — Observing session begins.

Midnight — Snacks (Main Lodge). 11:00 pm if cloudy

Saturday, August 27th

10:00 am to 11:30 am — Brunch (Main Lodge) and registration (Observatory Office).

1:00 pm — Short talks (Main Lodge). The Short Talks schedule will be posted in the Main Lodge and Observatory Office.

4:00 pm — Swap Fest (Observatory Classroom).

5:30 pm — Dinner (Main Lodge)

  • Ukrainian Beef Stroganoff

6:15 pm — Door prizes, must be present to win (Main Lodge).

7:00 pm — Group photo (Observatory Patio, Main Lodge if raining).

7:30 pm — Featured speaker (Main Lodge).

  • Jess Vriesema (Physics + Astronomy at the University of Wisconsin–Eau Claire)
  • Topic: TBD

9:00 pm — Observing session begins.

Midnight — Snacks (Main Lodge). 11:00 pm if cloudy.

Sunday, August 28th

8:00 am to 10:00 am — Breakfast (Main Lodge).

  • Blueberry pancakes, sausages, milk, juice, coffee.

Noon — Checkout