CC Dark Sky Working Towards “Dark Sky Certification” Status with Dark Sky International

Bruce Arlen

Ever since Cave Creek Dark Sky (CCDS) was formed almost five years ago, we have continued to grow at a rapid pace. Why is that? Well, because people are genuinely enthusiastic and thrilled to join our campaign to protect their quality of life by reclaiming the night.

When one becomes familiar with the facts and understands that small lighting changes yield large results and immediate benefits to themselves, their family, and their neighbors, it’s hard to ignore light pollution hovering all around us.

Changing our lighting habits is so much easier than you’d think once the idea is grasped that it’s a fight for the protection of our natural world right here in our own backyard.

How many times have you heard someone complain about a neighbor’s lights glaring all night? Or you’ve been bothered, privately complain, but shy away from asking your neighbor to shield or turn their lights off? Asking is not a confrontation but does take a little gumption. You can learn to do something about it by changing your own home and property first, one small radius at a time. Make an example for others to observe and follow and I guarantee the net results will be positive.

At Cave Creek Dark Sky our number one activity is the fight to stop the proliferation of unshielded lights generating accumulated light pollution. And it’s working! Many Cave Creek residents have already added shields, keep lights off when not needed and turn off lights at bedtime. Others have stopped adding more and more string lights (taken together there are multi-millions of bulbs) realizing the dark night is our friend and biological ally. Remember, we have this thing called night vision too, which kicks-in after a few minutes and then, wow, you can see in the night.

CCDS will continue to create and disseminate educational materials, hold events, speak at schools and businesses, and a variety of organizations spreading the word to Do Light Right.

Our goal, with your help, is to achieve a true dark sky status for Cave Creek. After all, Cave Creek is uniquely situated in the furthest Northeast portion of Maricopa County, nestled next to, and abutting the Tonto National Forest. We are like no other town. Our locational uniqueness and closeness to the great metropolis of Phoenix makes our relative darkness a blessing that needs protection. We have an obligation to maintain and hold the line, lighting-wise. CCDS aims to lead the way through the darkness or lightness so to speak.

Why has Cave Creek not already become a Certified Dark Sky community? Arizona is a dark sky haven. More municipalities in Arizona have achieved the status of “certified” Dark Sky community from Dark Sky International, the world’s leading authority on dark skies and light pollution then anywhere in the U.S. If Flagstaff, Sedona, Fountain Hills, Cottonwood, The Village of Oak Creek, and Camp Verde can do it, so can our cherished jewel, Cave Creek!

Please join us on Saturday, November 4th for our Fourth Annual Star Gazing Party event in the Spur Cross Recreational parking lot. If you have not already, RSVP to [email protected] to receive your official detailed Invitation.

And finally, CCDS has just been awarded our 501c3 Non-Profit status. We are now able receive your tax-deductible donations. Donations are our only form of revenue, and we need your help.

Please go to to show your support.