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Paul Bogard Asks ‘Is it the End of Night?’
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John Boydston captured this photograph of Sun Valley’s starry night during last week’s thunderstorm when the lightning crackled and clouds lit up against the backdrop of a starry, starry sky in Central Idaho’s Dark Sky Reserve.
 
 
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Wednesday, September 13, 2023
 

STORY BY KAREN BOSSICK

PHOTO BY JOHN BOYSTON

Paul Bogard grew up in Minnesota where he spent nights watching the stars in the northern part of the state.

Now an associate professor of English at Hamline University in Minnesota, he is keenly aware that three-quarters of Americans cannot see a starry night, thanks to light pollution.

In response, Bogard penned the book “The End of Night,” which examines everything from Las Vegas’ Luxor Beam, which is the brightest single spot on the planet, to nights so starlit the sky looks like snow. And he blends personal narrative, science and history to shed light on the importance of darkness.

Bogard will discuss the beauty of darkness and what we can do to protect the night in a free presentation titled “Is it The End of Night?” at 6 p.m. Thursday, Sept. 14, at Ketchum’s Community Library. He is in Idaho to teach at Boise State University’s Sawtooth Writing Retreat at the Central Idaho 4-H Camp.

To watch the program in person, RSVP to https://thecommunitylibrary.libcal.com/event/10977875. The program also will be livestreamed and available to watch later at https://vimeo.com/event/3655911.

Bogard’s book “The End of Night” was shortlisted for the PEN/E.O. Wilson Literary Science Writing Award. He also wrote “The Ground Beneath Us: From the Oldest Cities to the Last Wilderness, What Dirt Tells Us About Who We Are,” the children’s book “What If Night?” and the coffee table book “To Know a Starry Night.”

His articles have appeared in The New York Times, The Washington Post, Outside, Audubon, National Geographic and other publications.

 

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