The Astronomy Cafe


The Astronomy Cafe  is a brand new planetarium event!  Once a month,attend an informal discussion about a different astronomical topic.  Each presentation includes aquestion/answer period and a night sky tour.  Admission by donation. (Suggested donation   $5 - 7)

Pumpkin Moon

Monday, October 17, 2016
7:00 p.m.
Our closest celestial neighbor is this month's focus during the Astronomy Cafe.     We discuss lunar phases, moon motions, the various full moon names, as well as eclipses, both lunar and solar.     All attendees receive a small "Moon Watcher's Guide."     If you're an ardent moon admirer, we invite you to study the moon in greater detail with us this month.  



Monday, November 14, 2016
7:00 p.m.

Have you ever used a planisphere?  With a planisphere, one can know where the stars and planets will appear at any time of night.  One can even estimate the times of sun rise and sun set.  During this astronomy cafe, we teach you how to use a planisphere.  Attendees can even purchase planispheres before they leave. (That part is, of course, optional.)


North Pole
Monday, December 12, 2016
7:00 p.m.

Ever wonder how the sky appears at the North Pole?   In December, the North Pole experiences 24 hours of darkness every day.   Join us as we explore the North Pole Night Sky!   Did you know that no star rises or sets at the North Pole?  Also, contrary to popular opinion, it is not completely dark at the North Pole for six months out of the year.  

Winter Night Sky
Monday, January 9, 2017
7:00 p.m.

Twice a year the Astronomy Cafe conducts a thorough night sky tour.   On the second Monday in July, we offer our Summer Night Sky Tour.  On the second Monday in January, we explore the winter night sky.  Discover the wonders of the winter season sky:  Orion the Hunter, the Pleaides, the Winter Hexagon and much more!

Aurora Borealis
Monday, February 13, 2017
7:00 p.m.

Each February, the Astronomy Cafe focuses on the Aurora Borealis, the "Northern Lights."  We discuss the science and mythology of this enchanting sight.   What produces an aurora? Where are they visible?  Why do they produce different colors?  Do they make a sound?


Astronomical Misconceptions

Monday, March 13, 2017
7:00 p.m.

The Sun is yellow.  The North Star is directly overhead.  One can only balance eggs on their ends on the equinox.  The moon has no gravity.  The moon doesn't rotate.   The moon is the only body involved in tides.   Satellites aren't experiencing any gravitational pull.  A comet's tail is always behind a comet's traveling path.    All of these are examples of astronomical misconceptions.   During this Astronomy Cafe we address as many astronomical misconception as we can. 

exo planets

Monday, April 10, 2017
7:00 p.m.

Our galaxy might harbor more than one trillion planets!  Astronomers have found thousands of exo planets, planets in orbit around other stars.   From these discoveries, astronomers estimate that planets outnumber stars in the Milky Way.   We discuss the many methods by which astronomers locate exo planets and take a quick tour of some of the most exotic planets yet discovered.