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14 state parks pursue dark sky certification

Fourteen Utah state parks are applying to be listed as International Dark Sky Parks in an effort to preserve and promote starry nights that attract tourists.

The Deseret News reports more than a fourth of Utah’s 43 state parks are pursuing dark sky certification.

Goblin Valley and Dead Horse Point were recently certified.

Utah State Parks recreation interpretation resource manager Justina Parsons-Bernstein says dark sky designations will draw visitors and stimulate the tourism industry.

She said applications take about two years.

An association representative recently evaluated five parks.

Parsons-Bernstein says it’s important to preserve these areas where dark skies can still be seen.

She said much of Utah has the altitude, dry weather and distance from urban growth that facilitate the best dark-sky views.

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