Written BY: Sabrina Doyle

Who’s coming to the Jasper Dark Sky Festival

  • Estimated Read

    5 MINUTES

  • Location

    Jasper, Alberta, Canada

Adam Steltzner and Rob Meyerson 

Rob Meyerson is the founder and CEO of Delalune Space, a management consulting company focused on the aerospace, mobility, technology and investment sectors. As the former President of Blue Origin, he built the company from 2003 to 2018 into a more than 1500-person organization. Meyerson began his career as an aerodynamicist at NASA’s Johnson Space Center (JSC). Meyerson was awarded the Space Flight Award by the American Astronautical Society in 2017 for his accomplishments at Blue Origin. 

Adam Steltzner is a spacecraft designer, author, innovator and chief engineer at NASA’s Mars Perseverance Mission and works for the Jet Propulsion Laboratory. He’s worked on several flight projects including Galileo, Cassini, Mars Pathfinder, Mars Exploration Rovers. Reviews of his book The Right Kind of Crazy: A True Story of Leadership, and High Stakes Innovation describe Steltzner is a cross between Einstein and Elvis Costello who has mastered the art of managing complex tribes of humans. 

Keynote talk 
Oct. 23 from 3pm to 5pm at the Jasper Activity Centre 

What does the future of humanity and the space program have in common? Well for a few billionaire visionaries, an awful lot.  Elon Musk, SpaceX CEO and Jeff Bezos, Amazon CEO and owner of Blue Origin, both believe that the future of humanity lies off of this planet. Can we travel to other planets and successfully, sustainably find another home there? Join Adam Steltzner and Rob Meyerson for a discussion of these big questions. 


Tom Vassos 

Tom Vassos has devoted thousands of hours researching his lifelong passions – astronomy, cosmology and space exploration. He is the founder of Cosmologists Without Borders, a contributing member of Astronomers Without Borders and is the author of The Ultimate Guided Tour of the Universe – A Journey Through Space and Time. After 35 years he’s brought his sense of humour to the technology industry and a professor at universities around the world. This skilled science communicator will bring his sense of humor and enthusiasm for space to his event at the Jasper Dark Sky Festival.  

Science for Breakfast 
Oct. 23 from 8 a.m. to 10 a.m. in the Skyline Lounge at Lobstick Lodge 

With a side of delicious breakfast, let Vassos be your guide as you explore awe-inspiring images, animations and video clips of our strange universe and learn about the biggest, fastest and brightest things in the universe. Explore neutron stars, magnetars, quasars, blazars, squeezars, supernova explosions, circumbinary planets, worm holes, white holes and wacky weather in the universe. Learn about massive black holes and how they eat lunch (spaghettification), as well as how they can actually warp space and time. Breakfast opens at 7:30, program begins at 8:30. 


Hilding Neilson 

Hilding Neilson is an interdisciplinary scientist, working on astrophysics and on the intersection of science, astronomy, and Indigenous knowledge. As a Mi’kmaw person, he combines Indigenous knowledges and methodologies to better understand the physics of stars and the Universe and our place in it. When not teaching at the undergraduate and graduate levels, he can often be found participating in public outreach and science communication. 

Science for Breakfast 
Oct. 24 from 8 a.m. to 10 a.m. in the Skyline Lounge at Lobstick Lodge 

Astronomy has been practiced on the land we call North America since time immemorial and the peoples across this land had and have their own ways of understanding the sky and the Universe. In this talk, Prof. Hilding Neilson will discuss Indigenous methods of science and how sky stories reflect observations and knowledge of different peoples. He will show how these methods are related to constructing knowledge and apply these axioms to the current questions of where life is in the Milky Way Galaxy. 


Jack Fusco and Jeff Bartlett 

Longstanding speakers and renowned astrophotographers, Jack Fusco and Jeff Bartlett will return again to present some of their latest gorgeous shots of the stars and the stories behind them. 

Dark Sky Photography Workshop – Oct. 22 

Join Jeff Bartlett and Jack Fusco and explore the Jasper Dark Sky Preserve and its stunning location within the Canadian Rockies. We will spend the workshop photographing some of the best dark-sky locations in Jasper National Park and share many of our favourite locations along the way. 
Jeff Bartlett lived in Jasper for five years and there are few photographers with better 
knowledge of its many photographic landscapes. This will be Jack Fusco’s 8th year attending the 
Jasper Dark Sky Festival, so being out under the stars in Jasper feels like being at his second 
home. Our work from Jasper has been featured by National Geographic, NASA, the LA Times, Travel 
Alberta and many other outlets. 

Star Tales – Oct. 23 

While traveling long distances to remote locations, photographing the night sky comes with its share of adventures. Join astro photographers Jack Fusco and Jeff Bartlett as they share their favourite dark sky images from both Jasper National Park and other Dark Sky Preserves. Along with some tips and tricks to help you take better images of the night sky, they’ll also share behind-the-scenes stories of staying up way too late in Jasper, losing their car in the Alvord Desert, and standing beneath the stars in a Dark Sky Preserve larger than Switzerland. Whether you’re a stargazer or planning to head out with your camera, you’re sure to leave excited for your next night under the stars. 


Matricia Bauer 

Matricia Bauer is an Indigenous Knowledge Keeper, musician, and Jasper resident. Bauer’s business is called Warrior Women. Through it, she offers musical performances, workshops, tour shows, guided experiences, training, plant walks and more. To learn more about Matricia’s fascinating and heartwarming story of how she overcame past traumas and started sharing her culture in Jasper National Park, read her story and watch her video at Venture Beyond: The Series. 

Fireside Chat 
Multiple times, at Robson Park 

Have you ever wanted to hear the Indigenous stories of the land, feel the heart beat of the drum or have hands-on experience with a local Indigenous Knowledge Keeper? Warrior Women offers a truly unique and personal experience through drumming, singing and interactive story telling for any sized group. Come have a fire side chat, listen to drumming and singing and learn the legends through the eyes of the Cree.

Contact Us


  • Address

    Tourism Jasper
    414 Patricia St.
    Jasper, AB, Canada T0E 1E0

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