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Achieve Greatness using the Power of Gratitude



We live in a world where people are constantly bombarded by negativity. When we are faced with problems, we often turn to others for help.

But is it possible to go against the grain and focus on positivity?

In our world today, we have to be constantly on guard against negativity. So, when is it okay to just let go of the negativity and focus on the good?

I believe it’s when we recognize that every day brings us new opportunities for growth and opportunities to see the silver lining in everything we encounter.

When you become grateful, your life changes. Your outlook on life is much different. You no longer see yourself as a victim of whatever circumstances may come your way. You instead see yourself as a participant in the amazing journey that life has in store for you.

Benefits of Practicing Gratitude

You may be wondering why you should practice gratitude and how exactly does it benefit you?

It’s hard to believe that simply being grateful could make you happy. After all, we live in a world where many people are constantly complaining, not doing anything for themselves, and constantly blaming everything that’s happening around them.

On the other hand, there are those people who are constantly being grateful for everything that’s happening around them. They are constantly being thankful for the gifts that life has given them and are happy every day.

Being happy is a choice. It’s something that we’re able to do, and it’s one of the most important things we should focus on. If we aren’t happy, then we can’t enjoy the gifts that life has given us, and we can’t enjoy our lives.

We can choose to be grateful, or we can choose to be unhappy. This is a choice that each one of us gets to make, and we have to decide whether we want to be happy or if we want to remain ungrateful.

How do you know that you’re being grateful? How can you tell when you’re being thankful and when you’re just feeling good about life in general? You have to have a sense of gratitude for life to be able to feel that way.

You should be thankful for the food that you eat and the shelter you have. You should be thankful for the fact that you’re able to have a roof over your head and a comfortable place to live. You should also be thankful for the water you drink and the air that you breathe.

All of these things are gifts that you get to have in your life, and they should all be used and enjoyed, and you should always give thanks for them. You should also be thankful for the people that you love and the good health that you have.

Being grateful will not only make you happier, it will also make you more attractive to the people around you. Being a person who’s grateful can actually make you more attractive, and it can even make you feel better about yourself, which means that you’re more likely to get invited to parties and be more likely to get asked out on dates.

Why not choose to be a person who’s happy, and is grateful, and more attractive to people around you, as well as having a happier, healthier, and more enjoyable life?

When you focus on what you’re grateful for, you’re able to experience a whole different side of life. It’s actually easy to become overwhelmed by the things you don’t have and forget to take time to appreciate the things that you do have in your life.

By taking the time to practice gratitude each and every day, you’ll be able to notice and feel the difference. You’ll start to notice the things in your life that you’re already grateful for and start to appreciate them instead of focusing on the things you’re missing.

It’s a great way to start and finish the day. You’ll be able to look at your life as it is and as it’s been and start to appreciate all of the things that are important to you. You’ll also be able to be more positive and happy about your life because of it.

As you’re able to be more grateful for the things you have, it’s easy to become much more appreciative of the things that you don’t have as well. While this is great, it’s important that you don’t go overboard.

You shouldn’t be focusing on your lack of things. Instead, you should be focusing on the things you do have and the things that make your life happy and worthwhile.

Make Gratitude a Habit

You should have gratitude in your heart from the beginning of the day. That’s not a bad place to start, and it’s easy to get to that point if you’re in a positive mood.

But it’s also important that you build up that feeling of gratitude from the moment that you wake up to the moment that you go to sleep. It doesn’t matter how you do it, but you should try to get yourself to a state of gratitude, even if it’s only for 5 minutes.

It’s also important that you do this even when you’re having a bad day when you’re struggling with a difficult task, or when you’re dealing with problems in your life. Even if you’re angry about what you’re dealing with or frustrated about how your day went, you can still find ways to give yourself thanks.

What’s most important is to start making gratitude a habit, and you’ll start to notice a big difference in how you’re feeling and thinking. This is because you’re in a positive mindset more often than not, and that’s not a bad thing.

It will also start to show in the way you interact with other people. You’ll be more friendly, open, and happy because you’re in a good mood. This is one of the best ways to boost your overall self-esteem, and it’s an easy way to change your life and the way you think.

Believe in The Power Of Gratitude

It’s easy to become cynical and lose sight of gratitude. When life gets tough, it’s important to remember all of the good things that have happened.

I believe in the power of gratitude. I also believe in the power of being grateful. I’m not suggesting that you never feel sad or angry. Feel those emotions. Embrace them. But when you do, make sure you are also grateful for all the things that have happened.

When you feel gratitude, you will be more optimistic, patient, and positive. These three traits will help you reach your goals, whether they are professional, personal, or financial.

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FedNow: Ushering in an Era of Instant Money Transfers



The Federal Reserve’s New Leap Toward Real-Time Payments.

The frustration of waiting days for money transfers may soon be a thing of the past for American consumers and businesses. The Federal Reserve’s fresh-out-of-the-oven instant payment service, aptly named FedNow, is geared up to redefine the pace and efficacy of monetary transactions.

Traditionally, the Automated Clearing House (ACH) system has been the backbone for banks to process payments, a method often mired by its sluggish three-day clearing and settlement process. Under ACH, banks first exchange and verify payment details (clearing) before the actual fund transfer (settlement) is executed.

FedNow aims to bypass this prolonged waiting period by introducing real-time processing and settlement of transactions. This means users can experience almost instantaneous money transfers, regardless of weekends or public holidays, eliminating the conventional banking downtime.

However, there’s a slight catch. Consumers won’t directly enroll in the FedNow service. Instead, it’s up to their respective banks to integrate with the service. While this does come at a cost to the banks, it remains uncertain if and how these charges might trickle down to the average consumer.

Yet, the potential benefits are undeniably tempting. Imagine being able to clear bills right on the due date or making time-sensitive transactions without a hiccup. Such seamless transactions could significantly reduce overdrawn accounts and late payment fees and even lessen the reliance on physical cash and checks.

Though officially launched at July’s end, the system isn’t entirely new to the scene. Approximately 120 banks have already been putting FedNow to the test since 2021, ensuring its efficiency and reliability. However, it’s worth noting that for the time being, FedNow’s capabilities will be limited to domestic transfers within the United States.

As the world marches steadfastly into the digital age, financial systems must evolve to cater to contemporary needs. With the introduction of FedNow, the Federal Reserve has taken a pivotal step in bridging the divide between traditional banking and the swift-paced demands of today. Although only time will reveal its full impact on the banking landscape, for now, it seems both consumers and businesses have a lot to look forward to.

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Stitching Ethics into the Fabric: The Case for Locally Made Clothing



Why Your Wardrobe Choices Could be a Statement for Sustainability and Social Justice.

In a world bombarded by ceaseless marketing and seasonal sales, the temptation to indulge in fast fashion is stronger than ever. Online retail giants and big-box stores beckon consumers with a carousel of choices at irresistibly low prices. But as it turns out, the true cost of a cheap wardrobe may be more than one bargains for. From dubious working conditions in overseas factories to environmentally detrimental production methods, the fast fashion industry is increasingly coming under scrutiny for its ethical and ecological practices.

When the price tag reads $8 for a new sweater or $20 for a pair of pants, many consumers understandably see it as a deal too good to pass up. However, the shockingly low costs often point to a darker reality. Clothing priced this way is usually manufactured in facilities where workers face oppressive conditions—long hours in poorly ventilated areas and compensation that barely meets the living wage. By patronizing these brands, consumers inadvertently endorse a system that exploits vulnerable populations.

The allure of fast fashion does not stop at its social impact. It is also an environmental concern. The rapid turnover of styles contributes to enormous waste, much of which ends up in landfills. Moreover, the production processes of many fast fashion companies are far from green, contributing to pollution and unsustainable resource usage.

It takes deliberate effort to stand against the tide of convenient consumerism. Opting for quality over quantity presents an effective antidote. Consider this: Instead of buying four pairs of fast-fashion pants that will lose their shape and hue within months, why not invest in one durable pair from a local artisan for $80? In doing so, you’re not just buying pants but also investing in fair labor practices and, often, more sustainable materials and production methods.

Thinking locally when updating your wardrobe has benefits that extend beyond personal ethics and environmental consciousness. Local businesses often have a more transparent supply chain, allowing consumers to know exactly where their products are coming from. Furthermore, buying locally infuses money back into the community, supporting a cycle of prosperity that uplifts small businesses and provides employment.

The fashion industry is at a crossroads. While fast fashion, with its high-volume, low-cost business model, offers tantalizing options for the budget-conscious consumer, its hidden costs are increasingly hard to ignore. Thankfully, alternatives exist. By choosing to patronize local artisans and small businesses that prioritize fair labor and sustainable practices, consumers can make a significant impact. Your wardrobe doesn’t just have to be a collection of fabrics and patterns; it can be a testament to your values and a contribution to a more equitable world.

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A Golden Discovery: Civil War Era Treasure Unearthed in Kentucky



Kentucky’s Buried Secrets: The Civil War’s Lost Wealth Comes to Light.

While most people uncover forgotten toys or age-old utensils when digging up their backyards, a Kentucky resident stumbled upon a rare treasure: a hoard of gold coins, hidden possibly during the tumultuous Civil War era.

The coins date to between 1840 and 1863.

A Historical Treasure Trove

In an unexpected turn of events in 2023, a man from Kentucky made an astonishing discovery while working in his field. As his shovel hit a solid object, he unearthed a cache of 700 gold coins, all dating back to the period between 1840 and 1863.

Given the historical backdrop of the American Civil War, Kentucky’s shifting allegiances to both the Union and Confederacy make this discovery even more intriguing. An expert conflict archaeologist suggests that the coins, based on their time stamp and geographic location, were likely buried during a period when Kentucky maintained a neutral stance in the war. According to sources from Live Science, these precious relics might have been secreted away in anticipation of Confederate John Hunt Morgan’s raid in July 1863.

Unlike other nations where the government claims historic finds on private property, the U.S. allows individuals to retain their discoveries. However, tax obligations still apply.

A Windfall Worth Millions

After authentication, the gold cache was promptly sold. While the exact amount remains undisclosed, estimates from the Numismatic Guaranty Company place the hoard’s value at a staggering $2 million. Remarkably, gold dollars constituted around 95% of the entire collection. To put this in perspective, a singular $20 Liberty coin from 1863 could fetch over $100,000 at an auction. In total, this treasure trove boasted 18 such coins.

This astonishing discovery underscores the rich tapestry of American history, lying dormant just beneath our feet. The Kentucky man’s find not only offers a tangible link to a bygone era of conflict and upheaval but also serves as a testament to the unpredictability and allure of treasure hunting. The next time you’re in your garden, remember: history might just be a few inches away.

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The Crossroads of Career Change: Navigating the Maze of New Beginnings and Skill Enhancement



The Pandemic’s Wake Leaves Professionals Rethinking Careers and Skill Sets: What You Should Know.

In a world thrown into disarray by the pandemic, many find themselves reconsidering career trajectories and life goals. Job dissatisfaction seems to have reached an all-time high, with layoffs, furloughs, and “The Great Resignation” leaving an indelible impact on the workforce. But before making a seismic shift in your professional life, it’s crucial to weigh all factors carefully.

The process of career change is often romanticized, but the reality can be grueling, especially for those who have spent years in one industry and are contemplating a total pivot. It takes not only a strong resolve but also a financial cushion. Entering a new field like cabinetmaking or accountancy may require going back to school, which in turn requires a serious financial commitment.

If you’re fortunate enough to have a financial safety net—whether it’s substantial savings or a supportive partner—this transition becomes more feasible. But for most, it might involve finding a part-time job to make ends meet or even taking out loans and applying for grants. Financial planning becomes as crucial as the decision to change careers itself.

However, a career change isn’t the only route to job satisfaction. Upskilling—acquiring new and relevant skills—is a less drastic step that can breathe new life into your current role. Short-term training courses or certifications can lead to new responsibilities or even promotions. This can be particularly beneficial for those who are generally satisfied with their current field but seek advancement or a fresh challenge.

If the dilemma of whether to switch careers or upskill has you in a quandary, it might be wise to consult a career counselor. These professionals can help clarify your strengths, challenges, and interests. They can offer invaluable insights into educational pathways and career types that might suit you best, thereby helping you avoid long-term repercussions that could affect your quality of life.

Whether you decide to switch careers or enhance your skill set in your current role, the journey ahead will require careful planning, resilience, and a deep understanding of your professional aspirations. With proper financial planning and guidance, the road less traveled could make all the difference in your career satisfaction and overall well-being.

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The AI-Powered Cure for Insomnia: Can Whoop and Co. Really Help Us Sleep Better?



A Technological Turn for the Classic Tale of Insomnia.

The bane of modern existence for many—an estimated 30% of Americans suffer from short-term insomnia—might just meet its match. With AI-powered wearables and smart suggestions coming to the forefront, sleepless nights could become a thing of the past. But how effective are these modern remedies? And can they genuinely replace our age-old sheep-counting methods?

Artificial Intelligence (AI) is making waves in industries far and wide, from healthcare to entertainment. But one area that’s particularly piqued public interest is the intersection of AI and sleep science. While the good old tips—like setting a consistent bedtime and dimming your lights—remain timeless, wearables like Whoop provide a detailed insight into what happens when you close your eyes.

Whoop, the AI-powered wearable, collects biometric data that tracks the progression through the four crucial stages of sleep. Starting from stage 1, where you’re still awake, you then ease into light sleep (stage 2). During the critical deep sleep (stage 3), your body and brain get the most amount of rest and ‘recovery.’ Finally, in the REM (rapid eye movement) stage, your brain becomes active, storing new information while your body stays at rest.

Surprisingly, even those who claim to clock in a full eight hours of sleep often fall short of achieving adequate deep and REM sleep, which are essential for true rest and recovery. Wearables like Whoop provide a detailed analysis of your sleep cycles, alerting you if you’re missing out on these important stages. In a world where the value of sleep can’t be overstated, this data is more precious than ever.

Aside from Whoop’s impressive capabilities, many sleep experts still advocate for traditional methods. “Reading a good book— not a tablet—can lower sleep latency, meaning you’ll fall asleep faster,” says Dr. Jane Smith, a sleep physician. Tablets and other electronic devices emit blue light, making it difficult for the brain to prepare for sleep, irrespective of screen settings. In contrast, a real book doesn’t emit light and encourages the mind to relax, leading to quicker sleep onset.

As we venture deeper into the 21st century, the marriage between technology and health seems inevitable. AI-powered wearables like Whoop are making it possible for people to understand their sleep patterns in ways they never could before. But even as we welcome these advancements, it’s essential to remember that technology should complement, not replace, traditional wisdom. As the old adage goes, sometimes the best solution is the simplest one: turn off the gadgets and turn the page.

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Safety First: Navigating the Intersection of Man and Machine



Robots in the Workplace: Understanding and Minimizing the Risks.

The dawn of the robotic age in workplaces presents as much a challenge as it does an opportunity. With the seamless integration of robots, especially in warehouse scenarios, the intersection between man and machine is drawing a sharp focus on safety measures. Ensuring that human workers can coexist with their mechanical counterparts without danger is now a top priority.

A deep dive into data from the Census of Fatal Occupational Injuries (CFOI) spanning a quarter of a century, from 1992 to 2017, sheds light on the potential pitfalls of the robotic age. Within this timeframe, there were 61 reported fatalities in the U.S. involving workers collaborating with robots.

Two primary scenarios have been identified as the culprits:

  1. Contact with Robots: A significant 60% of these fatalities occurred due to workers directly engaging with robots. The grim tally includes workers struck by robotic arms, trapped or caught in machinery, or crushed during operational hours.
  2. Programming and Set-Up Mishaps: The remaining 40% of the fatalities were rooted in technical errors. Whether it was a glitch in programming, software malfunctions, or improper configurations, the fallout was catastrophic for the workers involved.

Larry Layne, a seasoned researcher with NIOSH, pointed out a harrowing statistic: a staggering 78% of the fatalities happened when a robot inadvertently struck a worker, frequently during maintenance activities.

While the CFOI data might not specify the precise number of individuals working alongside robots during this era, the fatality count, although concerning, remains relatively modest given the broad integration of robotics in diverse sectors.

Addressing this, global safety mavens are amplifying their efforts. Not only are risk assessments and specialized training modules being devised, but robot manufacturers themselves are integrating novel safety mechanisms. These span the gamut from emergency halt buttons to advanced barriers and innovative presence-sensing devices that can detect human proximity and react accordingly.

As the robotics age unfolds, so does our comprehension of the associated risks. The key is to harness the potential of these machines while putting human safety at the forefront. A world where humans and robots can work in harmony is not beyond our reach, but it demands vigilance, innovation, and a commitment to prioritize safety above all else.

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Aders Insurance Agency, Inc (State Farm)

Aire Serv Heating and Air Conditioning

Apple Dumpling Learning Center

Apple House

Auto Care Clinic

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Beaver Tree Services

Blake and Co. Hair Spa

Blue Mountain Creative Consulting

Blue Ridge Arts Council

Blue Ridge Education

BNI Shenandoah Valley

C&C's Ice Cream Shop

Card My Yard

CBM Mortgage, Michelle Napier

Christine Binnix - McEnearney Associates

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Cool Techs Heating and Air

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Downtown Market

Dusty's Country Store

Edward Jones-Bret Hrbek

Explore Art & Clay

Family Preservation Services

First Baptist Church

Front Royal Independent Business Alliance

Front Royal/Warren County C-CAP

First Baptist Church

Front Royal Treatment Center

Front Royal Women's Resource Center

Front Royal-Warren County Chamber of Commerce

Fussell Florist

G&M Auto Sales Inc

Garcia & Gavino Family Bakery

Gourmet Delights Gifts & Framing

Green to Ground Electrical

Groups Recover Together

Habitat for Humanity

Groups Recover Together

House of Hope

I Want Candy

I'm Just Me Movement

Jean’s Jewelers

Jen Avery, REALTOR & Jenspiration, LLC

Key Move Properties, LLC

KW Solutions

Legal Services Plans of Northern Shenendoah

Main Street Travel

Makeover Marketing Systems

Marlow Automotive Group

Mary Carnahan Graphic Design

Merchants on Main Street

Mountain Trails

Mountain View Music

National Media Services

Natural Results Chiropractic Clinic

No Doubt Accounting

Northwestern Community Services Board

Ole Timers Antiques

Penny Lane Hair Co.

Philip Vaught Real Estate Management

Phoenix Project

Reaching Out Now

Rotary Club of Warren County

Royal Blends Nutrition

Royal Cinemas

Royal Examiner

Royal Family Bowling Center

Royal Oak Bookshop

Royal Oak Computers

Royal Oak Bookshop

Royal Spice

Ruby Yoga

Salvation Army

Samuels Public Library

SaVida Health

Skyline Insurance

Shenandoah Shores Management Group

St. Luke Community Clinic

Strites Doughnuts

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The Arc of Warren County

The Institute for Association & Nonprofit Research

The Studio-A Place for Learning

The Valley Today - The River 95.3

The Vine and Leaf

Valley Chorale

Warren Charge (Bennett's Chapel, Limeton, Asbury)

Warren Coalition

Warren County Democratic Committee

Warren County Department of Social Services

Warren County DSS Job Development

Warrior Psychotherapy Services, PLLC

WCPS Work-Based Learning

What Matters & Beth Medved Waller, Inc Real Estate

White Picket Fence

Woodward House on Manor Grade

King Cartoons

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10:30 am College Day @ Corron Community Development Center
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College Day @ Corron Community Development Center
Join us for College Day at the Middletown Campus, 10:30 a.m. to noon, Wednesday, Sept. 27, in the Corron Community Development Center. Meet with reps from more than 40 public and private universities, including Bluefield[...]
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Front Royal Wednesday Night Bingo @ Front Royal Volunteer Fire Deptartment
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Bingo to support the American Cancer Society mission, organized by Relay For Life of Front Royal. Every Wednesday evening Early Bird Bingo at 6:30 p.m. Regular Bingo from 7-9:30 p.m. Food and refreshments available More[...]
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Fall Wild Edible Plants: Earth C... @ Sky Meadows State Park
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Carriage Barn in the Historic Area. Join professional outdoor instructor Tim MacWelch to learn about the remarkable seasonal wild edible and medicinal plants of the Blue Ridge Mountains. This full-day hike will cover native and[...]
6:30 pm Front Royal Wednesday Night Bingo @ Front Royal Volunteer Fire Deptartment
Front Royal Wednesday Night Bingo @ Front Royal Volunteer Fire Deptartment
Oct 4 @ 6:30 pm – 9:30 pm
Front Royal Wednesday Night Bingo @ Front Royal Volunteer Fire Deptartment
Bingo to support the American Cancer Society mission, organized by Relay For Life of Front Royal. Every Wednesday evening Early Bird Bingo at 6:30 p.m. Regular Bingo from 7-9:30 p.m. Food and refreshments available More[...]
11:00 am The Farmer’s Forge @ Sky Meadows State Park
The Farmer’s Forge @ Sky Meadows State Park
Oct 7 @ 11:00 am – 4:00 pm
The Farmer’s Forge @ Sky Meadows State Park
Historic Area. The forge is fired up and the blacksmiths are hard at work showing off their skills. Members of The Blacksmiths’ Guild of the Potomac have set up shop in the forge, located behind[...]
1:00 pm Front Royal Bluegrass Music Jam @ The Body Shop
Front Royal Bluegrass Music Jam @ The Body Shop
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Front Royal Bluegrass Music Jam @ The Body Shop
New Bluegrass and traditional music jam the first Saturday of each month starting Feb. 4th, from 1pm till 4pm. All levels of playing invited to attend.
11:00 am The Farmer’s Forge @ Sky Meadows State Park
The Farmer’s Forge @ Sky Meadows State Park
Oct 8 @ 11:00 am – 4:00 pm
The Farmer’s Forge @ Sky Meadows State Park
Historic Area. The forge is fired up and the blacksmiths are hard at work showing off their skills. Members of The Blacksmiths’ Guild of the Potomac have set up shop in the forge, located behind[...]
6:30 pm Front Royal Wednesday Night Bingo @ Front Royal Volunteer Fire Deptartment
Front Royal Wednesday Night Bingo @ Front Royal Volunteer Fire Deptartment
Oct 11 @ 6:30 pm – 9:30 pm
Front Royal Wednesday Night Bingo @ Front Royal Volunteer Fire Deptartment
Bingo to support the American Cancer Society mission, organized by Relay For Life of Front Royal. Every Wednesday evening Early Bird Bingo at 6:30 p.m. Regular Bingo from 7-9:30 p.m. Food and refreshments available More[...]
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The Farmer’s Forge @ Sky Meadows State Park
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The Farmer’s Forge @ Sky Meadows State Park
Historic Area. The forge is fired up and the blacksmiths are hard at work showing off their skills. Members of The Blacksmiths’ Guild of the Potomac have set up shop in the forge, located behind[...]
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Astronomy for Everyone @ Sky Meadows State Park
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Astronomy for Everyone @ Sky Meadows State Park
Historic Area. Discover our International Dark-Sky Park! Our evenings begin with a half-hour children’s “Junior Astronomer” program, followed by a discussion about the importance of dark skies and light conservation. Then join NASA’s Jet Propulsion[...]