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Public programs are offered on Friday evenings throughout the year at 7:30 (or 8:30 from May through August) PM and Saturday afternoons during the academic year at 1:00 PM. Admission to all public programs is $7 for adults and $5 for children, seniors, and UT community members (children under 4 are free). Doors open 30 minutes before the show, during which time you can explore the displays in out lobby or try to answer our fun astronomy-themed quiz projected inside the dome.
What you can expect:
- A live guided tour of the Toledo night sky
You will learn about the constellations visible from Toledo and any planets visible to the naked eye. We also typically discuss one "hot topic" in astronomy, such as the discovery of new planets around other stars, or the latest NASA discover on Mars.
- The full-dome presentation
Whether we are traveling inside a black hole, taking a tour of the moon with Elmo, or learning about the skies over Toledo, you and your family will simply be amazed at the fulldome immersive show.
- An open-ended question and answer session
Our expert host will answer all of your astronomy questions, whether they pertain to the live tour of the night sky, the feature presentation, or any other astronomy question that you might have.
- Observing at Brooks/Ritter Observatory
You will be escorted over to Brooks Observatory atop McMaster Hall to view the stars and/or planets through our 6 inch refractor telescope. On the first Friday of every month, we instead observe with the Ritter 1m (40 in) telescope. This telescope is the largest active telescope east of the Mississippi and is still used by the astronomers at UT for their research. On Saturday afternoons, we instead observe the Sun with our small mobile solar telescope. All observing is weather permitting!
The planetarium portion of the program is roughly an hour long, while the observing session will continue until everyone has had a chance to take a look through the telescope.
Spring 2014 Schedule
Stars: The Powerhouses of the Universe
This will be the Toledo premiere of Stars: The Powerhouses of the Universe!
Stars focuses on how stars are born, how they die, and how human understanding of them has changed over time. From Native Americans to Newton, from the electromagnetic spectrum to Einstein, audiences will explore nebulae, star clusters, pulsars, black holes, and more.
View the Stars: The Powerhouses of the Universe trailer
The Case of the Disappearing Planet
A radio announcement… an excited phone call… and our sly gumshoe, Skye Watcher, is
on the case. Explore with Skye and discover what happened to the ex-planet Pluto as
she tracks down clues that stretch back hundreds of years! Audiences will have great
fun with this unique program that looks into the changing status of planets in our
The Birth of the Solar System
This will be the Toledo premiere of The Birth of the Solar System!
Travel back in time nearly five billion years and watch the birth of our solar system. Learn how the sun and planets formed, and how astronomers have pieced together the clues of our ancient origins. Stunning graphics and a riveting soundtrack are bound to captivate everyone in this exciting new program.
View the Birth of the Solar System trailer
Zula Patrol: Under the Weather
Explore the solar system with the Zula Patrol! Learn all about weather, both here on Earth and on other planets as well. Your students will experience a dust storm on Mars, a hurricane on Jupiter, and the incredible heat on Venus.
View the Zula Patrol: Under the Weather trailer
Summer 2014 Schedule
(Saturday programs will resume in September)
Back to the Moon for Good
Back to the Moon for Good looks at Google’s X-Prize competition to return to the Moon. This program is an informative, fast-paced look at mankind’s exploration of the Moon in the past, the present, and the future.
View the Back to the Moon for Good trailer
Summer Skies over Toledo
Using our state of the art digital fulldome projections system we will tour the night sky as seen from here in Toledo looking at the stars and constellation. Then we’ll leave Earth and tour our neighborhood in the Solar System. Finally we will fly through the Milky Way galaxy stopping at a few exciting landmarks. This is an interactive space expedition, so bring your questions!