What's that in the air? It's a bird, it's a plane, it's — the astronomical wonders of the universe! This Saturday ditch the cinema for real-life special effects at the Summer Star Festival, the National Park Service's seasonal celebration of the Milky Way. At 7:30 p.m., the Ranger Band, composed entirely of NPS rangers decked out in full regalia, will entertain with astronomy-themed music. Then join Mike Shaw, a Cal Lutheran Physics professor, and Hal Jandorf, president of the Ventura County Astronomical Society, as they give tours and lectures about the sparkles above our heads. The crown jewel of the evening will be an opportunity to gaze at the moon, Saturn and other galactic wonders through a high-powered telescope. Kids will enjoy exploring Paramount Ranch — a wondrous member of the National Park family that retains the Wild West storefronts and old-timey props of movie production dating back to the era of Cecil B. DeMille — and exploring nighttime ecology and nocturnal animals with park rangers. Bring a flashlight with a red lens or cover yours with red cellophane so as not to disturb other stargazers and night creatures. Paramount Ranch, 2903 Cornell Road, Agoura Hills; Sat., Aug 10, 7:30-10:30 p.m.; free. (805) 370-2301, nps.gov/samo/parknews/summer-star-festival-august-10.htm.

Sat., Aug. 10, 7:30 p.m., 2013

LA Weekly