By Tim Kowols
While work by the Friends of the Grand Traverse Islands continues their efforts to turn parts of northern Door County into a national park, Newport State Park is already capitalizing on its recent international recognition. Earlier this year, Newport State Park was designated as an International Dark Sky Park for its excellent nighttime viewing of the stars. Park superintendent Michelle Hefty says it has noticed the increased interest in the area and the hobby.
When Newport State Park became the 48th International Dark Sky Park in the world, it became only the 13th state park in the country and the first in Wisconsin to earn the recognition. A site at nearby Rock Island State Park is currently being looked at by the National Park Service as a National Historic Landmark.