ARIZONA NEWS

Donors to match contributions to Fountain Hills Dark Sky Center for limited time

May 27, 2024, 8:00 PM | Updated: May 30, 2024, 6:45 am

Several donors are matching contributions made to Fountain Hills' International Dark Sky Discovery ...

Several donors are matching contributions made to Fountain Hills' International Dark Sky Discovery Center. (International Dark Sky Discovery Center Rendering)

(International Dark Sky Discovery Center Rendering)

PHOENIX — From now until June 20, several philanthropists are matching donations made to Fountain Hills’ International Dark Sky Discovery Center.

The town, located east of Scottsdale, is opening a 23,000-square-foot facility that will consist of the Dark Sky Observatory, Hyperspace Planetarium, Inspiration Theater, Night Sky Experience Exhibit Hall and Einstein Exploration Station. The venue will also house the Valley’s largest telescope.

The IDSDC is a nonprofit 501(c)(3) organization that has a fundraising goal of $25 million and more contributions are needed.

Plans for the project were unveiled in 2019, and fundraising started in 2021. The state of Arizona appropriated $2.5 million toward the effort in the 2021 budget, and $19 million has been raised as of February 2024.

The one exception to the matching program is naming rights donations will not be matched. The facility is selling the naming rights for $2 million for a major component or $8 million for the entire facility.

In 2018, Fountain Hills was named as the world’s 17th International Dark Sky Community after years of work to reduce light pollution.

The three other Dark Sky communities in Arizona — Oak Creek, Sedona and Flagstaff — are all located in the northern part of the state.

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Donors to match contributions to Fountain Hills Dark Sky Center for limited time