United Astronomy Clubs of New Jersey (UACNJ) - Hope, NJ

United Astronomy Clubs of New Jersey (UACNJ) is a consortium of amateur clubs from the tri-state region. Our mission is to promote the sharing of resources and information among these clubs, to operate the Jenny Jump Observatory and Education Center, and to promote activities, education, and public awareness in astronomy and related fields.

Free lectures and observing are open to the public every Saturday evening from April through October at the dark sky site in Jenny Jump State Forest. The schedule and other information can be found at http://uacnj.org. Special programs for Scout groups, schools, etc. can be arranged by contacting info@uacnj.org

UACNJ operates several telescopes at our site, including a 16-inch Newtonian telescope in the Greenwood Observatory, a 16-inch Meade in the Buinis observatory, an eight-inch solar telescope in the Barker Observatory, and a seven-inch Astro-Physics refractor in the Kevin Brady Observatory. Two additional observatories are operated by Member Clubs and are often open on public nights.

A local architect is currently designing a 16 x 16 foot observatory to house the 25-inch Midkiff telescope. Work on this new observatory will commence this spring.

A joint project with the Center for Solar Terrestrial Research of New Jersey Institute of Technology (NJIT) is underway to install a solar radio telescope and a 48-inch ITEK telescope that will be used for gravity wave research as well as public night observing when available. 

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Latitude: 40.90744 Longitude: -74.9255 Elevation: 1024 ft
the best travel advice comes from the people who live here
Gil Jeffer

How to Participate

Saturday evening lectures and astronomical observing are available to everyone free of charge; donations are always welcome. Weather permitting, you may observe the moon, planets, galaxies, star clusters, or other objects from our telescopes. If you have your own telescope or binoculars, you are invited to set up on our lawn.

To become further involved, first join one of our Member Clubs and then apply to become an Observer at UACNJ. Observer status allows unlimited access to the facilities and requires a commitment to help on at least three public nights per year.  Write to info@uacnj.org for more information

Dates and Times

Public programs are held each Saturday evening from April through October, rain or shine. An astronomy-themed talk is presented in our indoor lecture area starting at 8:00 PM. Following the talk (weather permitting), the public is invited to observe the sky through our telescopes until closing time (10:30 PM).  

Appropriate Ages

Check topic to see if it is of interest to younger folk, observing available to all.

Accessibility Notes

The lecture room is at ground level through a doorway. A step-stool may be in use at the telescopes depending on object viewed.


This past FREE UACNJ Saturday (5/28/16) Evening event we had 102 visitors come and enjoy the views through our telescopes. The UACNJ Observatory is attended by over 2900 visitors every year. We are open EVERY Saturday Evening (8pm), FOR FREE, rain or dark (not shine since it has to be dark to look at the night sky). Come view the wonders above at the UACNJ Observatory in Jenny Jump State Forest which located in Hope, NJ just 6 miles off exit 12 of Route 80.

Ken Taylor UACNJ/NWJAA, 5/30/2016

I have had the pleasure of membership, within UACNJ for the past year. It is here you will find the most dedicated amateur astronomers that the Tri-State area has to offer, in a FREE, publicly available venue. The staff, and our volunteer astronomy observers always look forward to your visits. Enjoy our planetary views, by means of an 8 inch telescope. Or feint stellar objects thru the 16 inch 'scope. We always look forward to sharing a good view, "from the hill", with you. They skies never get old. My personal favorite, is when conditions are just right - you look up with your own astronomy eyes and see the arm of the Milky Way Galaxy!

Theodore Frimet, 2/2/2019

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