The PARI of the South

The Pisgah Astronomical Research Institute is a former high-tech spy base and NASA tracking station that has morphed into an educational and research facility. PARI is now open for public tours each Wednesday at 2 p.m. Tours are led by specially trained Friends of PARI volunteers, who provide an in-depth personal tour of the 200-acre campus and insights into the site’s evolution.

“We are extremely pleased to be able to extend PARI’s public outreach with these fascinating presentations of the site, its history and the many exciting research and education programs currently underway at PARI,” said Friends of PARI President Joe Phillips.  “Our volunteer docents have spent considerable time learning about PARI and the NASA facility that previously occupied this beautiful campus, and they thoroughly enjoy sharing their knowledge.”

Reservations are suggested, and each tour participant is requested to make a $5 donation to PARI.  For more information and to book a reservation, contact PARI Science Educator Christi Whitworth at or call 877-6348.

— Cecil Bothwell, staff writer


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About Cecil Bothwell
A writer for Mountain Xpress since three years before there WAS an MX--back in the days of GreenLine. Former managing editor of the paper, founding editor of the Warren Wilson College environmental journal, Heartstone, member of the national editorial board of the Association of Alternative Newsweeklies, publisher of Brave Ulysses Books, radio host of "Blows Against the Empire" on WPVM-LP 103.5 FM, co-author of the best selling guide Finding your way in Asheville. Lives with three cats, macs and cacti. His other car is a canoe. Paints, plays music and for the past five years has been researching and soon to publish a critical biography--Billy Graham: Prince of War:

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