The Afton Preserve in Dekalb County, Illinois is a historical farm-turned-forest preserve 63 miles (101 km) west of Chicago, Illinois. The mix of prairie, trees, shrubs, wetlands, stream, pond, grasslands and open space has provided a great habitat for wildlife and outdoor enthusiasts, who may also witness beautiful night skies and stargazing events randomly held by local clubs and groups. Please note that while camping is allowed, the shelters available are “open-air” only and do not provide electricity.
Deborah Byrd created the EarthSky radio series in 1991 and founded EarthSky.org in 1994. Today, she serves as Editor-in-Chief of this website. She has won a galaxy of awards from the broadcasting and science communities, including having an asteroid named 3505 Byrd in her honor. A science communicator and educator since 1976, Byrd believes in science as a force for good in the world and a vital tool for the 21st century. "Being an EarthSky editor is like hosting a big global party for cool nature-lovers," she says.