To Top

Bill Sadowski Park

Deering Estate

Zoo Miami


This content comes from a hidden element on this page.

The inline option preserves bound JavaScript events and changes, and it puts the content back where it came from when it is closed.

Click me, it will be preserved!

If you try to open a new Colorbox while it is already open, it will update itself with the new content.

Updating Content Example:
Click here to load new content

Winter Star Party
Winter Observing In The Tropics
Great Speakers
Dark Skies
Memories That Will Last Forever

It's official!! Registration is now open.

Dear Winter Star Party Participants and Volunteers,

The 2018 Winter Star Party will be held at Chiefland Astronomy Village February 12th through February 18th 2018. Please go to to register for your tickets and pre-order your official Winter Star Party merchandise.

Winter Star Party Director Mr. Tim Khan has decided to open WSP 2018 on Sunday February 11th. This is great news because people have often asked for an extra day that we couldn't provide with our contract with the girl-scout camp. So, gear up and line up for us to open the gate at noon on Sunday February 11th.

As most of you know, Mickies Kitchen is unable to be our food vendor for the 2018 WSP due to a medical issue. We wish them well and hope to see them for the 2019, 35 year WSP anniversary celebration. We have Kickin' Caribbean to fill in this year and below is the menu they have planned for us. We welcome Carrie and crew from Kickin' Caribbean, they will be open for breakfast, lunch and dinner as well as serving whatever you need to keep you going all night.
Pricing and pre ordering for Kickin' Caribbean is now available on their website.

At this time next month we'll be enjoying the clear, crisp skies of the Chiefland Astronomy Village and scrumptious food from Kickin' Caribbean.

Remember the gate will open Sunday at noon!


Charlie Perillo
Winter Star Party, Host Coordinator

Register Today!

A concern has been raised by WSP volunteers and CAV residents about lights affecting imaging and observing on the various fields during the Winter Star Party. Regarding those who choose to park outside and walk in or walk out to WSP after the 7 pm gate closure, please approach the Village with parking lights only and turn your vehicle around to safely park on the side of NW 52 CT. This way lights will be facing (south) away from the observing fields. Remember there will be no white lights or vehicle movement between the hours of 7 PM and 7 AM. Your cooperation is greatly appreciated. Thank you.

Directions to 2018 Winter Star party in Chiefland, Florida

It occurred to me (actually someone asked) that we haven't talked about the camping at Chiefland. Of course, all star party rules and courtesies should be observed (no pun intended) at all times.
We are holding Winter Star Party this year on 20 acres at Chiefland Astronomy Village so there will be no camping 'x' to gauge your space. We encourage you to set up your tent and scope in the same space as your car. Be aware of your neighbors so not to crowd them.
There will not be an RV arrival time. All vehicles should line up preparing to enter at noon on Sunday, cars and RV's will come in at the same time. RV's will be directed to the RV hook up spots by WSP staff. There will be a team checking tickets of those in line before we open the gate for a smooth entry so please have your tickets ready.
There will be port o lets and showers. Our electrical system provides power to most areas so please plan on bringing a 50 or 100 foot outdoor rated cord to bring power from our system to your camp. This electric power if for astronomy purposes only. Charge your batteries, laptop and phone.
There is no window to exit the site after 7 pm. The gate will be closed to vehicle traffic so if you plan to leave after 7 pm park outside the gate which will me manned by a security company. You may walk in and out.
Make sure to wear your ticket on an outer garment at all times once you have registered and please attach your camping pass on your tent or camper.
Have I left anything out? Please ask, we want you to have the best information available for your enjoyment.

Charlie Perillo
Winter Star Party, Host Coordinator

As you should know by now, we are happy to welcome Kickin’ Caribbean to provide food at Winter Star Party this year in the Chiefland Astronomy Village. They will be there all week with fresh food and beverages 24 hours each day.
They have now provided a link to their web site so you can view their revised menu and pre pay for meals directly to them via paypal.

Go to Kickin' Caribbean and click on the menu at the top right. A drop down will give you the menu for breakfast, lunch and dinner as well as other items. There will be a link to paypal for your pre ordered dinners.

Below is the menu created by Kickin' Caribbean especially for Winter Star Party 2018.

Sunday: BBQ Chicken, Pasta Salad & Green Beans

Monday: Caribbean Salad (Bed of romaine with fresh pineapple, papaya, dried mango, cherries, grated coconut, fried plantains & topped with a mango sauce) OR Shrimp Salad (Sauteed Shrimp in butter served over a bed of mixed greens, onion, avocado, cilantro, fresh mango and served with a Zesty fresh dressing)

Tuesday: Baked Red Snapper, Rice & Beans, Steamed Veg OR Fried Okra

Wednesday: Jerk Chicken, Seasoned Corn on the Cob, Fried Dumplings

Thursday: Candied Steak, Baked potato loaded (sour cream/butter/cheese optional), Broccoli

Friday: Coconut Crusted Flounder OR Pineapple Ginger Teriyaki Chicken, White Rice, Steam Vegetables (Cabbage/Carrot)

Saturday: Jerk Pulled Pork, Yellow Rice, Black Beans & Lettuce Tomato Salad

Sunday: (We will provide a very early breakfast only)

Breakfast will be varied on a daily basis:

(One of the Porridges will be available per day)
Peanut Porridge
Cornmeal Porridge
Oatmeal Porridge
Cream of Wheat Porridge
Grits Porridge

Fresh Fruit

Bacon (turkey or pork)
Biscuits and Gravy
Callilou and Salted Cod Fish
2 Eggs anyway
Spinach, Bell Pepper, Mushroom, & Cheese Omelette
Breakfast Burrito

Ginger Beer (non alcoholic)
Pineapple Soda
Kola Champagne
Diet Coke
Sweet Tea
(We may offer a blended smoothie on friday/saturday)

Peach Cobbler Crisp
Gizzada (this is a coconut infused pastry)

Daily Lunch options will be:
Hot Dogs

Conch Fritter (some days only)
Hand Cut Fries
Sweet Plantains
Beef Patties
Fried Mac and Cheese Bites

Shopping, attractions and places of interest for you in the Chiefland area.
Everything below is within a one hour drive (more or less) from the Winter Star Party at Chiefland Astronomy Village.

Walmart, Winn-Dixie grocery store, Walgreens, CVS pharmacy.
Dakota Winery - tours, wine tasting.
Manatee Springs State Park - manatees in natural habitat.
CEDAR KEY (30 miles) with Seafood restaurants, boat tours, museum.
Harn Museum of Natural History (UF) - fantastic butterfly collection!
Devil's Millhopper State Geologic Site - large sinkhole.
Levy County Quilt Museum. There's a quilting specialty store in Trenton.
Treasure Cove Restaurant and General Store - 12 miles on the way to Cedar Key on CR 347.
Don Garlits Museum of Drag Racing
Homosassa Springs State Park
Oleno State Park

Smaller Florida towns with a little history or charm include Micanopy, High Springs, Williston, Cedar Key.

Visit web sites for the above for detailed information or ask one of the locals at CAV about them.

Winter Star Party

Winter Skies Tropical Setting

The Winter Star Party "WSP" is a serious event designed for amateur astronomers. WSP is held annually, usually during the new moon in February. The event is unique in that it occurs mid-winter during the height of the Florida Keys tourist season. The warm weather, coupled with dark skies, and possibly the steadies skies in North America attracts attendees from all over the frozen United States, Canada, and Europe giving the event an international flavor. The amateur astronomical "get-to-together"allows participants to meet and share observing ideas, astro-imaging techniques, as well as find out what's new in the hobby. WSP offers a stellar daily line-up of speakers who are experts in their particular field. WSP is held under the auspices of the Southern Cross Astronomical Society of Miami. This not -for-profit organization funnels proceeds from this event toward public education projects, scholarship programs, humanitarian needs and Girl Scout Camp improvements.


Established in 1984, the Annual WINTER STAR PARTY is held in the Florida Keys, and hosted by the Southern Cross Astronomical Society (SCAS), Inc., of Miami, Florida.

During a new moon week each February, approximately 650 amateur astronomers from around the world travel to the warm subtropics of the Florida Keys to enjoy nightly observing in 360º of clear steady night skies, exchange information and advice on the hobby, meet SCAS members and distinguished guest speakers, shop for astronomical equipment from the finest vendors in the country, participate in photo contests & workshops, go sightseeing in the "Conch Republic", and record the awesome beauty sparkling in the southern night skies.

Star Party

Register Early to Ensure Your Spot

Please contact the Winter Star Party Registrars at or call 386-362-5995 if you have any questions about registration. The 2019 WINTER STAR PARTY Registration Notification Postcards will be sent out in early September 2018. If you need any further information about the star party itself, please contact our host coordinator, Charlie Parillo at or call 954-816-3654.

Register Today!

Winter Star Party 2017

Winter Star Party 2016

WSP Award Winning Photos

IC443 - (c)Richard Wright

Milky Way and Moonrise Conjunction - (c)Jose Cardozo

Solar Proms1 - (c)Jim Sweeney

WSP 2017 Deep Sky Photos

Angel Nebula - (c)Josh Smith

Centaurs A NGC5128 - (c)Robert King

IC-410 - (c)John O'Neill

IC405 - (c)Jonathan Talbot

Omega Centari - (c)Robert King

Orion Below the Belt - (c)Joseph Bohanon

WSP 2017 Wide Field Photos

A Shot in the Dark - (2017)Harry D. Hanbury

Cannon - - (2017)Harry D. Hanbury

Mining the Sky - (2017)Harry D. Hanbury

Night Cannon - - (2017)Harry D. Hanbury

Oh Ryan (c)???

Orion Wide - (c)Joseph Bohanon

Solar System Photos

Moon - (c)Richard Wright

Solar Proms1 - (c)Jim Sweeney

Solar Proms4 - (c)Jim Sweeney

Sun Spots - (c)Jim Sweeney

Register Today!