Astronomy Fall Open House

Observatory and Planetarium
Augustana College
820 38th Street
Rock Island, Illinois


Saturday, October 24, 2009, 7:30-9:00 pm

The planetarium and observatory will be open to the public on Saturday, October 24, 2009 for the annual Astronomy Fall Open House. The planetarium will be open from 7:30 pm to 9:00 pm, with indoor and outdoor programs led by planetarium director Dr. Lee Carkner.

The star of this year's show will be Jupiter, the largest planet in the solar system. Telescope views will show off the planet's cloud bands and four large moons. The evening's events will also include a planetarium show where the wonders of the night sky will be presented on the facility's 30-foot dome with the Spitz A3P projector. Views of the Moon, double stars, star clusters and galaxies may be provided via the 14-inch reflecting telescope in the Gamble Observatory.

In addition, the Getz-Rogers Gallery, where images of celestial objects and a quarter-ton piece of the Canyon Diablo meteor are on display, will also be open to the public.

The Fryxell Geology Museum, which features one of the best collections of minerals and fossils in the Midwest, will also be open to the public.  Available for viewing are a Tyrannosaurus rex skull, the wall of glowing, fluorescent rocks and the complete 22-foot long skeleton of Cryolophosaurus, a large crested carnivorous dinosaur discovered in Antarctica.

Admission is free. The observing areas are unheated so dress appropriate to the weather. In the event of cloudy sky conditions, the indoor programs will still be offered.