One of my highlights for the year is getting to the highlands of West Virginia and soaking up the starlight under the best dark skies east of the Mississippi. If you have never seen a truly dark sky or have the need to get out under one, I highly recommend checking out the Almost Heaven Star Party this coming Labor Day weekend.
The star party is co-hosted by the Mountain Institute on Spruce Knob, West Virginia's highest point at nearly 5,000 feet above see level, and the Northern Virginia Astronomers Club (NOVAC). Both organizations are fantastic and it is a very well run event.
NOVAC has chosen an image I took from last year's event as the representative image for the 2010 event. "Star Tree" was captured on a pristine night of star gazing and represents the best that the highlands of West Virginia has to offer the amateur astronomer in the early fall of the year.
For much more information and to register please see this link to the Almost Heaven Star Party.