On October 27, 2017, we launched the first-ever Aurora Summit on Lake Superior’s shore in Minnesota! With the insight of a conference and the excitement of a festival, the event brings admirers of the Aurora Borealis together each year for a weekend-long workshop in the U.S.
Our mission is to help people of all backgrounds and experience levels view, photograph and understand the Northern Lights, while also developing an appreciation for the surrounding art, culture, science and photography of this rare natural phenomenon.
Led by scientists, published authors, professional photographers, and community leaders, the presentations range from the history, art, culture and science of the night sky, to Aurora forecasting and photography. With a shared love of the night, we also cover miscellaneous topics, inviting guests to stretch their imagination and enjoy other aspects of astronomy, astrophotography, and nocturnal wonders.
Located south of the Auroral Oval, the Great Lakes region offers a prime location for viewing strong aurora and geomagnetic storms. We’re fortunate in that we can chase aurora all year long, even in the summer, though it’s often much more difficult to catch a sighting of Northern Lights in the mid-latitudes.
The Aurora Summit honors a tradition of gathering along the Great Lakes to chase the Northern Lights. During our inaugural year, we built on this tradition and opened our gathering to the public, welcoming anyone from anywhere in the world. The Aurora Summit is not affiliated with any one aurora group or community, and instead welcomes aurora chasers and space weather enthusiasts from all groups. The conference is privileged to have the official support of our amazing host, Mike Shaw Photography.
In 2022, the Aurora Summit will take place Nov. 4-6, 2022, in Red Cliff, Wisconsin. Our host hotel is Legendary Waters Resort, and the event will take place at the resort located on Lake Superior’s shore just south of the Apostle Islands National Lakeshore.
Admission costs for the Aurora Summit are determined each year by the end of June, in order to cover the costs of meals, presenters and special programming. Costs will be posted on the registration website at event launch, no later than July 1.
Take a look around!
- Watch for registration in June! Register from the Homepage
- Event Details & Conference Schedule
- In the News & Press Releases
- Your Guide to the Aurora Summit
- Frequently Asked Questions
- Submit to the Aurora Slideshow
- Get Involved!
- Resources & Gear
Conference activities include educational sessions, a panel discussion, a keynote speaker, a travelogue, hands-on demonstrations, photo sharing and raffle prizes. The event enjoys a diverse mix of people every year, from beginners who have never seen the Aurora to seasoned professionals and academic experts. The conference draws Aurora enthusiasts of all experience levels, whether they are beginning sky watchers, amateur photographers or working scientists.
During the peak season for Northern Lights, the Aurora Summit takes place in the Great Lakes Region, which is positioned south of the Aurora Oval. Traditionally, we’ve booked a host hotel that offers incredible opportunities for night sky photography on site, with a beach that overlooks Lake Superior.
All are welcome, even international guests!
Photo by Mike Shaw Photography.
The Aurora Summit brings talented creative and scientific minds together, offering insight on a variety of topics related to Aurora Borealis, photography and the night sky. We welcome keynote speakers, presenters and panelists with a wide range of interests and experiences, and presentations range from beginner to advanced topics.
Find out who is presenting at our next conference, through the details on the Events page. We’ll also share their talents on our social media channels.
About the Organizers
Melissa F. Kaelin and Dixie J. Burbank have teamed up with Dr. Mike Shaw, of Mike Shaw Photography, LLC, to host an annual summit on the Aurora Borealis, offering an event where all are welcome to explore the art, folklore, science, and photography of this rare natural phenomenon. The Aurora Summit is not affiliated with any group, but members from any group are welcome to attend.
Hosted by Mike Shaw Photography
Day and Night Photography Workshops You’ll Remember For the Rest of Your Life