Summer planetarium shows kick off Wednesday

Metro Wire Staff

Summertime stars and planets that fill night skies will be the focus of upcoming programs at the University of Wisconsin-Stevens Point’s Allen F. Blocher Planetarium.

Hour-long programs will be offered at 7:30 p.m. on select Mondays and Wednesdays in the Science Building, 2001 Fourth Ave. The public may attend free of charge.

Shows include:

·Mars Quest – Wednesday, May 29
Patrick Stewart of “Star Trek: The Next Generation” presents how the view and perception of Mars changed over the history of humankind and gives us hints on how future colonization of the red planet may happen.

· Sky Quest – Monday, June 3, and Wednesday, June 5
Narrated by Roxann Dawson from “Star Trek: Voyager,” the show explores the night sky and how to find constellations.

· Chasing the Ghost Particle – Monday, June 10, and Wednesday, June 12
Learn how tiny and elusive particles called neutrinos hold secrets about exploding stars and black holes.

· Journey to the Stars – Monday, June 17
Discover how astronomers use telescopes, the many objects in the solar system, what stars look like and the locations of other galaxies.

· Bad Astronomy – Monday, June 24, and Wednesday, June 26
“Bad Astronomer” Phil Plait looks at the myths and realities of astronomy.

· Endless Horizon – Monday, July 1, and Wednesday, July 3
Patrick Stewart of “Star Trek: The Next Generation” narrates the history of the exploration of planets and space, featuring early explorers, astronomers, and inventors.

· Dawn of Astronomy – Monday, July 8, and Wednesday, July 10
See how prehistoric stones, the pyramids, and early shrines helped early people link themselves to celestial events, measure time and determine directions.

· The Stargazer – Monday, July 15, and Wednesday, July 17
Narrated by Nichelle Nichols from “Star Trek” and noted astronomer James Kaler, the show looks at the nature of stars and stellar life cycles.

· Galaxies – Monday, July 22
This show takes audiences on a journey through the Milky Way and the galaxies beyond.

The planetarium is located on the second floor of the Science Building. Doors open 30 minutes before the scheduled program. Designed for a general audience, planetarium programs appeal to all age groups. Seating is first come, first served for up to 55 people.

Parking is available in Lot D behind the Science Building and is free in all university lots after 7 p.m.

Groups of 10 or more may schedule a special showing of any planetarium program until Wednesday, July 24, by calling 715-346-2139 between 8 a.m. and 12:30 p.m., Monday through Thursday, or using the form at www.uwsp.edu/physastr/plan_obs/Pages/Reservation-Information.aspx. There is a cost of $25 per group for these special presentations.

The Arthur J. Pejsa Observatory will be closed during the summer. For more information go to www.uwsp.edu/physastr/plan_obs.

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