Why doesn't Fountain Hills have street lights?
When the Town was being developed, the infrastructure for street lights was included in some areas. However, Town developers focused on installing street lights primarily at major intersections for added pedestrian and driver safety. Properly shielded street lights of the right color temperature DO meet dark sky requirements and can be installed if they are desired and there are monies available to pay for them.
Won't I be safer if I add more lights around my house?
Several studies have been conducted to see if increased lighting improves safety. While some lighting does increase safety, excessive lighting is linked to more crime because it enables criminals to see what they’re doing and to act faster. CLICK HERE to learn more.
What are the benefits to our Town in being a Dark Sky Community?
Fountain Hills enjoys the benefit of darker skies than the neighboring Phoenix Metro area, giving us superior stargazing opportunities. Our Dark Sky designation also increases tourism, which in turn boosts our local economy. It allows us to host the annual Dark Sky Festival, drawing thousands into the downtown area, and paves the way for the creation of the International Dark Sky Discovery Center. All of this while protecting local wildlife and human health.
Where can I find the Fountain Hills Lighting Ordinance?
You can read the Town’s Lighting Ordinance HERE.
How can I get the Lighting Ordinance enforced?
FHDSA does not enforce lighting violations. To report a complaint, you can visit the Town’s Code Enforcement page HERE to get contact information or to fill out a complaint form online.
What can I do about my neighbor's lighting?
Most complaints about a neighbor’s lighting can be resolved with a kind letter to the neighbor. You can find our suggested 4-step process and a sample letter HERE.
What is light pollution?
Light pollution is the excessive use of artificial light at night that is not controlled to shine only where and when it is needed. Learn more about light pollution and how it impacts wildlife, human health, energy consumption, and more on our Light Pollution page.
How is FHDSA funded?
As a self-sustaining member program of the Fountain Hills Cultural & Civic Association, we operate under 501(c)3 non-profit status. Our funding comes from annual memberships, private donations from individuals, the auction at our annual Dark Sky Festival, and various grants.
How can I find dark sky-friendly lights?
Check out our page on Lighting 101. You can also find additional suggestions HERE.
What about holiday lights?
From the Town’s Lighting Ordinance: Temporary outdoor holiday lighting decorations are permitted for a reasonable period before a holiday and are not subject to the requirements in this section. Holiday lighting in residential neighborhoods shall be minimized after 11:00 p.m. and shall be removed within two weeks after the holiday.
What about sport field lights?
From the Town’s Lighting Ordinance: No outdoor recreational facility, public or private, shall be illuminated after 11:00 P.M. except to conclude a specific recreational, sporting or other activity that began prior to 10:00 P.M. Recreational facility lighting shall make appropriate use of adaptive controls when possible.
Where can I find materials for educators?
The International Dark Sky Association has a great list of educational materials for educators. You can find them HERE.
What are some good stargazing locations in Fountain Hills?
We’ve gathered a list of places in and near Fountain Hills for good stargazing. Check them out HERE.
Are FHDSA and IDSDC the same organization?
The Fountain Hills Dark Sky Association (us) is a separate entity from the International Dark Sky Discovery Center that is coming to the Centennial Circle area in downtown Fountain Hills. The IDSDC project was birthed out of a desire to do something special with our Dark Sky designation and has a close relationship with FHDSA.
Where are other Dark Sky Places located?
There are hundreds of Dark Sky Communities, Parks, and Preserves around the world. You can find the list of every location HERE.
Who are the Star Dudes?
The “Star Dudes” are a group of local night sky enthusiasts who give stargazing experiences with their own telescopes. CLICK HERE to find out where you can catch up with them in Town.
Can I volunteer with FHDSA?
We have several volunteer opportunities throughout the year. These include our festival, the Thanksgiving Day Parade, setting up booths at community events, and more. Reach out to us through our Contact Page if you’d like to volunteer.