In the early 1930s, Colonel Griffith J. Griffith donated thousands of acres of land in Silver Lake to the City of Los Angeles. He included necessary funding to build an observatory, for he believed these shouldn’t be restricted to scientists in remote locations. As a result, the Griffith Observatory came to be and, upon looking through its telescope for the first time, Griffith famously said that “if all mankind could look through that telescope, it would change the world.”
Just Like the Movies
Arguably the most iconic landmark in Los Angeles, the Griffith Observatory is the crown jewel of the city of stars, hence proving the aforementioned stars aren’t just the ones in movies. Since its opening in 1935, it has served as a guiding beacon through the vastness of space for locals and tourists alike, and it does so – as it always has due to Griffith’s will – free of charge.
James Dean fought there. Emma Stone and Ryan Gosling danced through it. Well, now you get to have your own iconic moment at the Griffith Observatory, for the landmark hosts an array of free monthly activities. These will undoubtedly spark up the interest and imagination of anyone who has ever wondered about outer space and has waited for their chance to take a look themselves.
What to do at the Griffith Observatory?
You can be a part of Griffith’s monthly public star parties. Here, the Los Angeles Astronomical Society, the Los Angeles Sidewalk Astronomers, and The Planetary Society come together. They attend the event to share their knowledge and equipment in a variety of free activities for everyone to enjoy. Dozens of telescopes will be available across the Observatory grounds for you to take a look at. Go ahead, find the Moon, the Sun, visible planets, and all kinds of celestial bodies. A knowledgeable astronomer mans each station, ready to answer questions you may have about the sky, space, and beyond.
However, if you are more of a romantic and would rather enjoy the stars the traditional way, then the monthly Sunset Walk & Talk events are definitely for you. Starting in the Observatory, this laid-back hour-long hike is the perfect way to enjoy Griffith Park. Why? Because you’ll experience a beautiful Los Angeles magic hour firsthand from above the city. As the group walks the trails, lecturers will delve into the landmark’s history and place in local culture. The entire city will transform into its night self before your eyes. You will get the chance to lay back and star-gaze from the very top of the world.
Indeed, Griffith himself was on to something when he looked through that telescope. Witnessing the mystery of space firsthand can be quite a humbling experience. Maybe we should all get the chance to admire the wonders of space. Lucky for you, living in Los Angeles you get the chance to do it for free! So go ahead, star-gaze next to a beautiful architectural icon, and sneak a peek at the vastness of space.