Skip to Main Navigation. Each navigation link will open a list of sub navigation links.

Skip to Main Content

Apply to the University of Wyoming

Global Resource Navigation

Visit Campus
Download UW Viewbook
Give to UW

Physics & Astronomy

College of Arts & Sciences

WELCOME to the Harry C. Vaughan University of Wyoming Planetarium


Tuesday evening shows!

The UW Harry C Vaughan Planetarium is excited to introduce our new Tuesday evening shows.  Tuesday evening shows will alternate between This Month's Sky and our featured Full Dome Movie and will be at 7 pm.

Now offering online ticket sales!              

Doors open 20 minutes before show.  There is no admittance once the show starts.

All pre-purchased tickets must be purchased before noon on the Friday of the show. This includes pre-purchased tickets for the Saturday shows. Tickets can be purchased through the following three methods:

Tickets can be purchased at theater (cash or check only); $3 for student and $4 for non-students. Tickets for children under 5 are free.

Tickets can also be purchased at the Physics Department main office in Physical Science room 204 Monday through Thursday from 8-5 and Friday from 8 -4.  We can only accept cash or checks in person. 

Tickets can also be purchased online. Please note that all online tickets are $4, but kids under 5 are still free. Tickets can be picked up at the door 15 minutes prior to the show. Click here to buy tickets online.

Tour of STAR Observatory: Weeks without laser light shows will feature an optional Rooftop Telescope Tour! After the planetarium show (and weather permitting) you are invited to the roof of the Physical Science building where you can look through our 16 inch STAR (Student Teaching And Research) Observatory. Please dress warm! The tours will be very informal and you may stay for as long as you like or leave at any time. Tours are free.

We are offering kid themed shows on Saturdays followed by free activities for those interested in staying.  Please note the days.

We are glad to have such a range of young children for our kid-themed shows! Parents, please understand that it can get a little noisy and chaotic at times with so many young kids in a darkened room. We appreciate any help in making these shows enjoyable for all!

Show Schedule


January

Happy New Year!  At the planetarium, our new year’s resolution is to spread the word on popular astronomy, especially this summer’s big event: The Great American Eclipse!  Starting this month, we will be offering regular shows dedicated to giving you everything you need to know about this event and so much more.  The sky is not the limit here; it is just the beginning.

 

Friday January 13th

8:00pm  Future Skies                                                                                        Duration: 50 minutes

The Sun rises and sets each day, constellations change with the seasons, planets march across our evening and morning skies.  These are the motions of our solar system that humans have witnessed over centuries.  But the entire universe is constantly evolving, though on a timescale too long for humans to observe.  Starting with the present day and ending billions of years from now, tonight will show you the night sky’s evolution and how it will appear from Earth in the distant future.

9:00pm  FREE Tour of our STAR Observatory                               Duration: Weather Dependent

 

Saturday January 14th

11:00am  Finding the Sun: Eclipse 2017                 Duration: 40 minutes + Flexible Activity Time

A rare and extraordinary event is coming this summer: a Total Eclipse of the Sun on August 21st, 2017.  This semester at the planetarium, our Eclipse 2017 Series will introduce audiences of all ages to the solar eclipse phenomenon: what it is, when and how to safely view it, why it is so extraordinary, and what astronomers hope to learn from this event.  Join us this morning for our first show in the Eclipse 2017 Series: we will start by learning about the Sun and why it is important to the Earth and to our everyday lives.

After the show, you will have a chance to create your own edible model of the Sun

 

Tuesday January 17th

7:00pm  This Month’s Sky                                                                                Duration: 45 minutes

As the months and seasons change here in Wyoming, new astronomical events occur in our nighttime sky.  No matter what time of year, there is always something to see after the Sun goes down.  From constellations to meteor showers to visible planets, This Month’s Sky acts as your guide to these remarkable events and where to find them.

 

Friday January 20th

8:00pm  Greek Mythology                                                                                Duration: 50 minutes

Ancient civilizations used the night sky as a clock, calendar, and story board for their unique mythologies.  The 88 constellations that piece our sky together are dominated by Ancient Greek Mythology and the heroes, villains, gods, and men that feature in Grecian myths.  Tonight we will connect the dots to discover the characters that lie in these constellations and help astronomers navigate the night sky.

9:00pm  FREE Tour of our STAR Observatory                               Duration: Weather Dependent

 

Tuesday January 24th

7:00pm  The Dark Matter Mystery - Exploring a Cosmic Secret                     Duration: 45 minutes

What keeps galaxies together? What are the building blocks of the Universe? Researchers all around the world try to answer questions like these. We know today that approximately a quarter of the Universe is filled with a mysterious glue: Dark Matter. We know it’s out there, but we have no idea what it’s made of. This full dome planetarium movie takes you on the biggest quest of contemporary astrophysics: solving the dark matter mystery.

 

Friday January 27th

8:00pm  Jewel of the Solar System                                                                   Duration: 50 minutes

Thanks to its beautiful rings, Saturn is the most recognizable planet in our solar system.  But there is so much more to this cosmic jewel.  For example, did you know that if Saturn was placed in water it would float? This show covers everything we know about Saturn from the remarkable rings to its stunning composition and formation.  As Cassini begins its final piece of the mission through Saturn’s system we will discover the most beautiful and interesting planet in our solar system! 

9:00pm  FREE Tour of our STAR Observatory                               Duration: Weather Dependent

 

Saturday January 28th

11:00am  A Look at the Sun, Earth, and Moon System                                    Duration: 40 minutes    

                                                                                      + Flexible Activity Time

The Earth, Sun, and Moon are the perhaps the most important things in our solar system. The Earth is our home, the Sun provides us with light and energy, and the Moon is our inspiration for exploration. In this show, we will explore all 3 cosmic objects and how they interact with each other. From the seasons on Earth to gigantic solar flares from the Sun, we will see it all!

Stay after the show to head up to the roof and use a Sun safe telescope so you can safely look at the Sun for yourself!  We may even catch a glimpse of a crescent moon!  However, if the January weather is too cold for comfortable viewing, we will stay inside to build a model of the Sun, Earth, and Moon system.

 

Tuesday January 31st

7:00pm  This Month’s Sky                                                                                Duration: 45 minutes

As the months and seasons change here in Wyoming, new astronomical events occur in our nighttime sky.  No matter what time of year, there is always something to see after the Sun goes down.  From constellations to meteor showers to visible planets, This Month’s Sky acts as your guide to these remarkable events and where to find them.

February

This month at the UW Planetarium explores astronomy’s new and exciting frontiers.  From the elusive answers about dark matter to the ongoing discoveries of exo-planets, February’s shows tackle the important questions in astronomy and how they affect our everyday lives and the future of our planet.

 

Friday February 3rd  

8:00pm  The Search for Terra Nova                                                              Duration: 50 minutes

In 1992 astronomers discovered something fantastic: a planet orbiting another star in the galaxy.  Since then thousands of these planets outside our solar system have been discovered.  Exciting and shocking discoveries have been made about exoplanets, yet there is still a lot to be learned about these new worlds. Join us tonight to discover the science and history behind detecting exo-planets, the knowledge we have gathered so far, and the possibility of extending mankind’s reach to the stars.

9:00pm  FREE Tour of our STAR Observatory                               Duration: Weather Dependent

 

Tuesday February 7th  

7:00pm  The Dark Matter Mystery - Exploring a Cosmic Secret                     Duration: 45 minutes

What keeps galaxies together? What are the building blocks of the Universe? Researchers all around the world try to answer questions like these. We know today that approximately a quarter of the Universe is filled with a mysterious glue: Dark Matter. We know it’s out there, but we have no idea what it’s made of. This full dome planetarium movie takes you on the biggest quest of contemporary astrophysics: solving the dark matter mystery.

 

Friday February 10th

8:00pm  Dark Matter, Dark Energy, and the Fate of Our Universe               Duration: 50 minutes

Recent experiments have shown that less than 5% of the universe is comprised of normal matter like electrons, protons, and neutrons.  Tonight join Dr. Daniel Dale on the exploration of the other 95% of the universe: dark matter, dark energy, and how they impact the future of the cosmos.

9:00pm  FREE Tour of our STAR Observatory                               Duration: Weather Dependent

 

Saturday February 11th

11:00am  Introduction to Constellations                Duration: 40 minutes + Flexible Activity Time

For thousands of years, humans have been looking at the stars and using their imaginations to develop stories and myths about the constellations they create. The constellations have stories of Heroes and Heroines, Monsters and Villains, Gods and Goddesses, anything you could imagine! Join us as we discover these amazing tales behind our constellations.

Stay after the show to design your own 2-dimensional OR 3-dimensional constellation and write its origin story in order to get a stellar prize!

 

Tuesday February 14th

7:00pm  This Month’s Sky: Love in the Solar System                         Duration: 45 minutes

For centuries, the night sky has been observed by hopeless romantics. February’s This Month’s Sky gets into the spirit of Valentine’s Day to discover the most romantic celestial bodies and systems in the universe as well as their classic love stories! 

 

Friday February 17th

8:00pm  Overcoming Armageddon                                                                  Duration: 50 minutes

Popular science fiction movies such as Deep Impact and Armageddon explore the danger posed on the Earth by wayward space rocks.  Just ask the dinosaurs, the impact could be catastrophic.  But in today’s society and with our modern technology how could we protect ourselves from an incoming comet or asteroid?  Tonight we will take an in-depth look into the creation and behavior of these small cosmic bodies and discover why studying something so small can forever change our understanding of the Earth’s future.

9:00pm  FREE Tour of our STAR Observatory                               Duration: Weather Dependent

 

Tuesday February 21st  

7:00pm  The Dark Matter Mystery - Exploring a Cosmic Secret                     Duration: 45 minutes

What keeps galaxies together? What are the building blocks of the Universe? Researchers all around the world try to answer questions like these. We know today that approximately a quarter of the Universe is filled with a mysterious glue: Dark Matter. We know it’s out there, but we have no idea what it’s made of. This full dome planetarium movie takes you on the biggest quest of contemporary astrophysics: solving the dark matter mystery.

 

Friday February 24th

8:00pm  Hiding the Sun: Eclipse 2017                                                           Duration: 50 minutes

This summer, one of the rarest and strangest astronomical events is happening: a total solar eclipse! Join us tonight for an interactive show about the Sun and Moon, why eclipses occur here on Earth, and how professional and amateur astronomers alike are preparing to view this year’s Great American Eclipse.

9:00pm  FREE Tour of our STAR Observatory                               Duration: Weather Dependent

 

Saturday February 25th

11:00am  Journey to the Edge of the Solar System                 Duration: 40 minutes + Flexible Activity Time

Sun, planets, and moons, oh my!  There is so much to explore in the Earth’s cosmic neighborhood!  Take a journey through our solar system in all its beauty and wonder, from the innermost planet of Mercury, all the way to the Oort Cloud, and everywhere in between.

After the show, show off your old and new knowledge of our solar system to design a Postcard from Another World.

 

Tuesday February 28th

7:00pm  This Month’s Sky: Love in the Solar System                         Duration: 45 minutes

For centuries, the night sky has been observed by hopeless romantics. February’s This Month’s Sky gets into the spirit of Valentine’s Day to discover the most romantic celestial bodies and systems in the universe as well as their classic love stories! 


-------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

Information for Groups:

All private shows will be $50 for the first hour, $25 each additional hour. Payments can be made by cash, check, voucher or IDR.  Sorry, we cannot accept credit cards.

The University of Wyoming Harry C. Vaughan Planetarium is a great place to bring your class, club, or entire grade.

Our shows are typically one hour long although it is very easy for us to modify the time as needed.

Learning about the planets or stars? Constellations? Galaxies? Let us know and we can cater our shows to your topic. We also always offer general sky shows for a great introduction to astronomy.

Please call 307-766-6150 or email planetarium@uwyo.edu for more information or to set up a show.

For parking information please contact Transit and Parking Service at 307-766-9800 or visit their webpage at:

http://www.uwyo.edu/tap/parking/parkingoptions.html

Directions:

The University of Wyoming Harry C. Vaughan Planetarium is located in the basement of the Physical Science building. Enter the Physical Science building at the SW entrance, go down the stairs and follow the signs pointing to the planetarium.

University of Wyoming map: http://www.uwyo.edu/uw/tour/_files/docs/uw-laramie-campus.pdf

Physical Science is located at D 10 in the above map.

About Harry C. Vaughan:

The planetarium has been renamed in honor of the Windy Ridge Foundation’s owner, who was a professor of meteorology in the Iowa State Department of Geological and Atmospheric Sciences. Vaughn taught courses in meteorology, earth sciences and agronomy there. Before teaching at Iowa State, he worked at the Ames Laboratory.

Upon retirement, Vaughn moved to Laramie, where he befriended a number of faculty members in UW’s Department of Atmospheric Science. He devoted his time to his love of astronomy and built a personal observatory in his backyard to make his own astronomical observations and also mentored UW students.

 

Animal Shelter Donation

Animal Shelter Donation
Funds from the telescope raffle were used to purchase food and toys for the Laramie Animal Shelter.

Animal Shelter Donation

Animal Shelter Donation
One of the recipients of the Animal Shelter donation.
Planetarium Wall

Share This Page:

1000 E. University Ave. Laramie, WY 82071
UW Operators (307) 766-1121 | Contact Us | Download Adobe Reader

Twitter Icon Youtube Icon Instagram Icon Vimeo Icon Facebook Icon

Accreditation | Emergency Preparedness | Employment at UW | Gainful Employment | Privacy Policy | Accessibility Accessibility information icon