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 apply now

Global Resource Navigation

Visit Campus
Download UW Viewbook
Give to UW

UW Planetarium to Celebrate Mystery, Halloween in October

September 29, 2017
spacecraft floating in space
This September, the Cassini spacecraft’s 20-year journey came to a fiery end, crashing into the planet Saturn. A planetarium program, scheduled Friday, Oct. 20, at 8 p.m., will explore and honor the discoveries made by Cassini that drastically altered our view of the solar system. (UW Planetarium Photo)

The mysteries of dark matter, cosmic superstitions and a spooky Halloween program highlight programming at the University of Wyoming Harry C. Vaughan Planetarium during October.

“Friday the 13th, Halloween and Dark Matter Day. Oh, my!” says Samantha Ogden, the planetarium’s coordinator. “It is a mysterious and spooky month indeed at the UW Planetarium. Join us as we explore the mysteries and dark side of space.”

Friday planetarium shows during October start at 8 p.m., with a STAR Observatory tour scheduled to follow an hour later. Kid-themed shows are scheduled Saturdays at 11 a.m. The month also includes five Tuesday night shows; they begin at 7 p.m.

Tickets cost $3 for students and $4 for non-students. They may be purchased at the Department of Physics and Astronomy main office, located in Room 204 of the Physical Sciences Building, Monday through Thursday, from 8 a.m.-4:30 p.m. and Friday from 8 a.m.-noon. Doors open 20 minutes before each show, where tickets will be sold if available. The planetarium, which seats 58, is located in the basement of the Physical Sciences Building.

Since the renovations were finished in November 2014, the full-dome shows provide immersive 3-D experiences. Traditional star shows have been replaced with far more interactive presentations, similar to an IMAX theater. Laser shows consist of three lasers (red, blue and green) that project graphics on the dome. The lasers are synchronized with music, and pre-programmed graphics and images are displayed.

The October planetarium schedule is as follows:

-- “This Month’s Sky,” Tuesday, Oct. 3, 7 p.m. As the months and seasons change in Wyoming, new astronomical events occur in the 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 program acts as your guide to these remarkable events and where to find them.

-- “The Milky Way and Beyond,” Friday, Oct. 6, 8 p.m. The solar system consists of everything that orbits the sun -- from Earth and the other planets to tiny asteroids and far-flung, ice-cold comets. All of this is a mere speck compared to our vast Milky Way galaxy. However, the universe does not stop there. The Milky Way is just one of trillions of other galaxies. Come and explore the largest objects in the universe -- starting with our own Milky Way galaxy on to our next-door neighbor, the Andromeda galaxy, and then all the way out to the most distance objects that can be spotted. A free STAR Observatory tour (weather dependent) follows at 9 p.m.

-- “From Earth to the Universe,” Tuesday, Oct. 10, 7 p.m. The night sky, both beautiful and mysterious, has been the subject of campfire stories, ancient myths and awe for thousands of years. A desire to comprehend the universe may well be humanity’s oldest shared intellectual experience. Yet, only recently have we truly begun to grasp our place in the vast cosmos. To learn about this journey of celestial discovery, from the theories of the ancient Greek astronomers to today’s grandest telescopes, come experience “From Earth to the Universe.”

-- “Cosmic Superstitions,” Friday, Oct. 13, 8 p.m. Friday the 13th is a day of superstition, and the cosmos is filled with them. The Zodiac constellations have existed for thousands of years and have been used to predict one's future, but are they really supernatural? What has made the Zodiacs so interesting and historically famous among humans? What role do peanuts play in NASA’s mission successes? How will the universe really end? Spend this Friday the 13th at the UW Planetarium to find out about some of the most famous superstitions in the cosmos. A free STAR Observatory tour (weather dependent) follows at 9 p.m.

-- “Wyoming Rocks to the Moon and Back,” Saturday, Oct. 14, 11 a.m. and 1 p.m. The solar system is full of moons. The Earth’s moon waxes and wanes every month as it journeys through its lunar phases. But, did you know that other planets in our solar system have moons, too? Mars has two, and Jupiter, the largest planet in our solar system, has 67. This program will explore these planetary companions and find out how similar or different they are from Earth’s moon. The planetarium is teaming up with the UW Geological Museum for this program, which is free of charge for the Geological Museum’s outreach event.

-- “This Month’s Sky,” Tuesday, Oct. 17, 7 p.m. As the months and seasons change in Wyoming, new astronomical events occur in the 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 program acts as your guide to these remarkable events and where to find them.

 -- “Cassini’s Legacy,” Friday, Oct. 20, 8 p.m. Launched in 1997, the Cassini spacecraft has opened our eyes and imaginations to the wonders of the ringed planet Saturn and its many unique moons. Throughout its long exploration, what have we learned about the gas giant? What unique qualities lie within its ring system and moons? As this 20-year voyage comes to a close, sending back images and data until the last second, this program recounts Cassini’s accomplishments and questions why this exploration of Saturn ended in fire rather than ice. A free STAR Observatory tour (weather dependent) follows at 9 p.m.

-- “From Earth to the Universe,” Tuesday, Oct. 24, 7 p.m. The night sky, both beautiful and mysterious, has been the subject of campfire stories, ancient myths and awe for thousands of years. A desire to comprehend the universe may well be humanity’s oldest shared intellectual experience. Yet, only recently have we truly begun to grasp our place in the vast cosmos. To learn about this journey of celestial discovery, from the theories of the ancient Greek astronomers to today’s grandest telescopes, come experience “From Earth to the Universe.”

-- “The Spooky Side of Space,” Friday, Oct. 27, 8 p.m. Space is an ever-growing void of darkness, emptiness and unknown. From black holes to aliens, space can be very scary at times. But, science helps us to learn more about these objects so they become a lot less scary and much more fascinating. Celebrate the holiday dressed in your favorite costume to be entered for a drawing for a stellar prize. Happy Halloween! A free STAR Observatory tour (weather dependent) follows at 9 p.m.

-- “The Spooky Side of Space,” Saturday, Oct. 28, 11 a.m. Halloween is here, and space is showing its spooky side: creepy constellations, abominable asteroids, scary stars, bone-chilling black holes and ghostly nebula. Come see the spooky side of space, and also learn a lot about some really cool and strange things. Celebrate the holiday dressed in your favorite costume to be entered for a drawing for a stellar prize. Happy Halloween! After the show, visitors can safely experiment with a spooky substance: dry ice. Ice volcanoes, fog and ghost bubbles can be created.

-- Triple full-dome feature: “Dark Matter Day,” Tuesday, Oct. 31, 7 p.m. Oct. 31 has been dubbed “Dark Matter Day” by the astronomical community. This is fitting for Halloween, as dark matter is both unknown and mysterious. Dark matter will be explored with three full-dome movies. “Dark, the Movie” is scheduled for 7 p.m., followed by “Phantom of the Universe” at 7:30 p.m. and “Dark Matter Mystery -- Exploring a Cosmic Secret” at 8 p.m.


Share This Page:

Contact Us

Institutional Communications

Bureau of Mines Building, Room 137

Laramie

Laramie, WY 82071

Phone: (307) 766-2929

Email: cbaldwin@uwyo.edu

Find us on Facebook (Link opens a new window) Find us on Twitter (Link opens a new window)

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

Twitter Icon Youtube Icon Instagram Icon Facebook Icon

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