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BREC’s Highland Road Park Observatory Prepares for Increase in Solar Activity


Baton Rouge, La. - The Recreation and Park Commission for the Parish of East Baton Rouge (BREC) Highland Road Park Observatory personnel have been monitoring activity associated with Solar Cycle 25 that comes from the Solar Weather Prediction Center. This solar cycle is approaching its peak of activity in the spring of 2024. Activity from this solar cycle includes increases in sunspots, plage, flares and filaments, prominences and coronal mass ejections as well as increases in the aurorae borealis and aurorae australis, better known as the Northern and Southern Lights and a solar eclipse.


Highland Road Park Observatory (HRPO), located at 13800 Highland Rd, Baton Rouge, LA 70810, will be hosting a series of programs and events that will focus on the increase in solar activity from Solar Cycle 25. Solar Viewings will occur once a month on Saturdays from noon to 2 p.m. Upcoming Solar Viewing events are scheduled for March 30, April 27, July 27 and August 31. While not due to the Solar Cycle 25 activity, a Partial Solar Eclipse will occur over the Baton Rouge area on Monday, April 8. HRPO will be hosting a viewing of the eclipse with activities from 10:30 a.m.-3:30 p.m. Additional Solar Viewings will be held during International Astronomy Day on Saturday, May 18 from 3:15-5:15 p.m. and American Radio Relay League Field Day on Saturday, June 22 from 3:30-5:30 p.m.


Due to weather and atmospheric conditions, events and viewings may be subject to change. HRPO will continuously monitor conditions. Periodic special sessions may occur for viewing additional solar phenomena based on visually-confirmed activity seen in optical and hydrogen-alpha wavelengths. For more information on HRPO's upcoming programming and events go to: https://www.brec.org/facility/HighlandRoadParkObservatory

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