City of Rocks announced that it has been certified by the International Dark Sky Association as a dark sky park.

The park does not have any artificial outdoor lighting fixtures. It has also recently partnered with Castle Rocks State Park and has improved its lighting.

The goal of the International Dark Sky Association is to encourage communities, parks and protected areas around the world to preserve and protect dark skies. The association strives to positively impact people’s connection with nature, the well-being of ecosystems and climate change.

“Experiencing the dark skies in City of Rocks is truly magical,” said Tara McClure-Cannon, City of Rocks acting superintendent. “It brings the past to life in ways that you just can’t experience during the daylight hours. To know that you are camping in the same spot that people camped for thousands of years and looking up at the sky without modern light pollution — basically seeing the same sky as our ancestors — is an awe-inspiring moment.”

Ashley Wilson, director of conservation for the International Dark Sky Association, cited City of Rocks’ commitment to lead by example as a reason for its certification.

“It’s this level of dedication and incredible nighttime experience that warrants the coveted Dark Sky Park certification,” Wilson said.