‘Star of the Magi’ Program Highlights UW Planetarium Program in December | New


December 1, 2021

A program that explores the Star of Bethlehem will take center stage at the Harry C. Vaughan Planetarium at the University of Wyoming this month.

“For our December programs, we will be taking a tour of the frozen worlds of the solar system; learn about the possible astronomical explanation surrounding the Star of Bethlehem; and explore the dancing aurora lights of the planetary poles, ”explains Max Gilbraith, planetarium coordinator. “Our featured event will be Dr. Chip Kobulnicky’s ‘Star of the Magi’ return program, which runs December 10-11. As a free event for December, we hope to watch the James Webb Space Telescope launch on December 18th. December in the afternoon.

The planetarium will be closed for the winter holidays from December 20 to 27.

To get tickets or receive more information about the programs, send an email [email protected] or leave a voicemail message and call back phone number at (307) 766-6506. Tickets cost $ 5 for the public and $ 3 for students, seniors, veterans, first responders, and those under the age of 18. Places are free for children under 5 years old.

Reservations or pre-purchases are not required and walk-in tours are welcome. Tickets can be purchased online with a credit card, booked by email or voicemail, or purchased at the start of the show. Cash or checks accepted at the door. The planetarium, which can accommodate 58 people, is located in the basement of the Physical Sciences Pavilion. Seats are allocated on a first come, first served basis outside of designated ADA / wheelchair spaces.

To pay for tickets with a credit card, go to https://www.uwyo.edu/uwplanetarium/ticket.aspx. For a group of more than six people, email the planetarium for a private show at https://uwyo.sjc1.qualtrics.com/jfe/form/SV_bKuqIynOn7gFK2F. Tickets for private shows are the same as for public programs.

A film and a special live lecture for the public will be presented each week. All programs last approximately one hour. If time permits, part of the show may also focus on a live sky tour or additional information related to the subject of the film.

The December program is:

– “It’s ice: frozen worlds”, Friday, December 3, 7:00 p.m. The poles of the Earth may contain frozen water, but these are not the only places. Further from the sun, it gets even colder with carbon dioxide, methane, oxygen and nitrogen freezing as we get to Mars; the moons of Jupiter, Saturn, Uranus and Neptune; and, finally, the minor planet Pluto. As the temperature drops in Wyoming, visitors will learn how colder it is in other places to feel warm.

– Film in full dome: “The dawn of the space age”, Saturday December 4, 2 pm From the launch of Sputnik, the first man-made satellite, to magnificent lunar landings and private space flights, viewers will be immersed in this precise historical reconstruction of man’s first steps in space.

– “Star of the Mages”, Friday December 10 at 7 pm and Saturday December 11 at 2 pm. Discover the sky, marvel and speculate with Kobulnicky, astronomer and professor of physics and astronomy he presents some of the celestial possibilities that may underlie the “star that rose in the East” that drove the Magi at the birthplace of Jesus.

– “Wyoming Skies”, Tuesday, December 14, 7 p.m. The program features exploration of the stars, constellations, planets, meteor showers, and other celestial phenomena visible from Wyoming for the season.

– “Aurorae: Dancing Lights”, Friday, December 17, 7 pm For millennia, our ancestors watched in awe of “Dawn in the North”, better known as Aurora Borealis. What is causing this display in the sky? Where is it happening? Do other planets have auroras? Take a walk from the surface of the sun to the magnetic poles of the solar system to find out.

– Film in full dome: “James Webb Space Telescope Launch Watch Party”, Saturday December 18, 2 pm. Hang out with the planetarium staff and watch the world’s largest space telescope launch on the big screen at the Planetarium.


The Harry C. Vaughan Planetarium at the University of Wyoming will be open to the public in December. “Star of the Magi” will premiere at 7 p.m. on Friday, December 10 and at 2 p.m. on Saturday, December 11. (UW Planetarium Photo)


Arline J. Mercier