Planetarium Group Shows

Schedule a Special Showing

The planetarium offers a variety of programs for all grades. Some are traditional sky shows, some are interactive, where students use keypads built into the arms of the chairs to respond to questions. Participatory shows engage students in activities related to the concepts presented.

Programs are scheduled on a first come, first served registration process. School groups viewing the same program may be combined when space allows and grade levels are similar. While we will do what we can to adjust schedules, late arrivals may forfeit their booked program(s).

Tickets are $3/per student and $1/chaperone. Educational staff with ID badge are free. All group programs have a minimum fee of $45.

Culturally Based

Fate of the Maya

Grade 5 and up, 25 minutes

Visit classic Mayan cities to discover how the Maya aligned their temples to the sky and used calendars to record the past and predict the future. Explore pyramids designed as observatories and learn why the Maya went extinct.

Season of Light

Grade 3 and up, 40 minutes

Near the time of the winter solstice we experience the longest nights of the year. During this season we engage in traditions that can be traced back to distant ancestors who celebrated the Sun’s annual return to the North. Explore how fires, candles, Christmas Trees and even Santa Claus became a part of our holiday season. Learn about astronomical events that may account for the Star of Bethlehem.

Sky Legends of the Three Fires

All Ages, 45 minutes

Gather around a flickering campfire with Larry Plamondon, known as Two Hawks, for three stories about the night sky. These stories, from the Native American people of western and northern Michigan, explain how stars were scattered across the sky, the Milky Way and the Big Dipper.

Stars of the Pharaohs

Grade 5 and up, 36 minutes

Travel back to ancient Egypt to see how they used science and stars to tell time and the passing of seasons, and align enormous structures. Learn the connections the ancient Egyptians felt to the stars and astronomical phenomena. Travel through the monumental temples and tombs that have been digitally recreated in their original splendor. Don’t forget to visit the Mummy while you’re at the museum.

Our Place in Space

Back to the Moon for Good

Grade 5 and up, 30 minutes

When Apollo 17 astronauts left the last footprints on the Moon, no one knew how long it would be before the next steps would be taken on the Moon’s surface. The Google X Prize will be awarded as an incentive to move lunar exploration into the realm of non-governmental, private industry. Many teams are now engaged in a competition to deliver a robotic package to the surface of the Moon, and to travel 500 meters across the Moon's surface.
Este programa está disponible en Español.

Big

Grade 3 and up, 40 minutes

Just how big is space? Sir Richard Attenborough describes the sights seen through the port of a spacecraft on our way outward to the edges of space. Take this journey as we voyage past planets, spinning galaxies, and stars that are forming while others are dying.

Black Holes: The Other Side of Infinity

Grade 6 and up, 40 minutes

Welcome to the dark side of the universe in Black Holes: The Other Side of Infinity, a presentation of the latest science about black holes. Super computing technology takes the audience on a hunt for the ultimate cosmic monster – to the center of a black hole, a place humans can never venture.

Cosmos Odyssey

Grade 7 and up

Our journey begins with the birth of the universe and the solar system, and it continues on to illustrate how humans have used their powers of observation, intellect and ingenuity to begin to understand their place in the cosmos.

Hot and Energetic Universe

Grade 7 and up, 29 minutes

From the death of stars to the Big Bang, invisible wavelengths of energy tell the story of our Hot and Energetic Universe.

IBEX: Search for the Edge of the Solar System

Grade 8 and up, 27 minutes

Join two teenagers as they discuss our solar system, the influence of the Sun, the motion of galaxies, and the possible findings of IBEX, the Interstellar Boundary Explorer, which is being used to map the furthest reaches of our solar system.

Phantom of the Universe: The Search for Dark Matter

High School and up, 28 minutes

From the journey of protons racing through the world’s largest particle collider in Europe to up-close views of the Big Bang and emergent cosmos, Phantom of the Universe is designed to immerse audiences in the search for dark matter.

The Earth

CAPCOM GO! The Apollo Story

All Ages, 24 minutes

Why did we go to the Moon, and what is Apollo's lasting legacy? Learn about the goals and missions of the Apollo program that placed twelve men on the Moon from 1969 to 1972 and examine what it took to get there 50 years ago. Follow each of the Apollo missions that were made possible by the collective efforts of nearly 400,000 people working together to solve problems, develop untested procedures and invent new technologies. The first Moon landing not only rallied a nation, but influenced the future of space travel, technology, the economy, environmental awareness and so much more.

Did an Asteroid Really Kill the Dinosaurs?

Grade 4 and up, 24 minutes

Did a space rock six miles wide slam into the Earth 66 million years ago and wipe out 75 percent of all species, including the dinosaurs? Learn about Earth’s largest extinction events and celestial objects that periodically hit Earth.

From Earth to the Universe

Grade 6 and up, 30 minutes

Through science and technology, man has learned about the Universe. Take a stunning voyage through space and time to learn about our Solar System and the lives of stars, star clusters and e that make up our Universe.
Este programa está disponible en Español.

Habitat Earth

Grade 4 and up, 25 minutes

Vast networks of life forms interact with each other on many levels. Explore the living and environmental connections that exist on our planet and affect our daily lives, and discover what it means to live in a connected world.

The Night Sky

Big Astronomy: People, Places & Discoveries

Grade 3 and up

Nearly 70% of major astronomical telescopes are now located high in the mountaintops of Chile. Learn about the people who operate these facilities, their diverse backgrounds and their quest to reveal the secrets of the universe.

Constellations Tonight

Grade 3 and up, 50 minutes

Constellations Tonight prepares viewers for stargazing under the current sky. In this participatory guide to the heavens, you can get oriented to the sky by using the Big Dipper and finding the North Star; learn to use a star map to locate bright stars and constellations; and get examples of what can be seen with a pair of binoculars.

In My Backyard

Grade K-2, 45 minutes

Through story and song, children’s entertainer Fred Penner invites you to his backyard to explore the changes of the seasons, the concepts of day and night, our Earth, its moon, neighboring planets and familiar constellations such as the Big Dipper. It’s a fun exploration of the world around us.

One World, One Sky

Preschool - 1st grade, 30 minutes

Join Big Bird, Elmo and their Chinese friend, Hu Hu Zhu, exploring the sky they share. Discover the Big Dipper and North Star, and take an imaginary trip to the Moon with Elmo and Hu Hu Zhu.

Orion Nights

Grade 5 and up, 45 minutes

During cold winter nights the bright stars of Orion the Hunter twinkle overhead. Learn to find stars within the constellations and how they go through a cycle of birth, aging and death as their fuel is consumed.

Perfect Little Planet

Grade K and up, 35 minutes

Imagine the ultimate space vacation. Discover our solar system through a different set of eyes – an alien family from another star system seeking the perfect vacation spot. Which of our planets will they choose?

The First Stargazers

Grade 6 and up, 24 minutes

Journey back in time to explore how the first stargazers experienced the sky above. Discover the pyramids of Giza and view how they align to the skies. See the Parthenon, Stonehenge and other places inspired by the first stargazers.

Two Small Pieces of Glass

Grade 5 and up, 22 minutes

This full-dome show gives the history of the telescope, from the early instruments of Lippershey and Galileo all the way to the Hubble Space Telescope. The differences between reflecting and refracting telescopes are discussed.
Este programa está disponible en Español.

The Solar System

Ice Worlds

Grade 5 and up, 25 minutes

Ice Worlds explores the role of ice in the Universe. It is found in the Rings of Saturn, the mountain sized dirty snowballs we call comets, making the moons of the outer Solar System, and covering the Polar Regions of the Earth. Studies of this frozen material lead to a better understanding of our own world.

Invaders of Mars

Grade 5 and up, 25 minutes

Orbiting spacecraft from Earth gather information about great chasms, canyons and volcanoes on Mars. Robotic landers explore the icy caps and experience the dust devils and storms that sweep across the Martian surface.

New Horizons

Grade 5 and up, 25 minutes

Follow a comet through interplanetary space to visit violent volcanic eruptions, the icy rings of Saturn, and some of the planets and moons in our celestial neighborhood. On each of our exotic ports of call, real data and images from modern space probes are transformed into stunning full-dome visualizations.

Secret of the Cardboard Rocket

Grade K and up, 40 minutes

Join in the story of two children who build a rocket out of a cardboard box and take a fantastical voyage through the solar system with the help of a magical book and their own vivid imaginations.

Secrets of the Sun

Grade 5 and up, 25 minutes

The story of our star is explored in Secrets of the Sun. From the nuclear forces churning at the heart of the Sun, to the mass ejections of solar material into surrounding space, discover the power of the Sun and its impact on the planets and ultimately life on Earth. Learn about the Sun’s origin and move forward in time to its ultimate death.

Small Worlds

Grade 4 and up, 25 minutes

In the summer of 2015, three space probes are exploring comets, asteroids and dwarf planets: the small worlds of our solar system. Hori, the New Horizons probe to Pluto, discusses his mission with Dawn, a probe to the asteroid Vesta and dwarf planet Ceres, and Rose, the Rosetta probe exploring the comet 67P/Churyumov-Gerasimenko. See some of NASA and ESA’s most recent images of comets, asteroids and dwarf planets.

The Little Star that Could

Grade 2-4, 40 minutes

A sweet animated story about a Little Star who is born and searches for a place in space to call home, as well as a name and some planets to keep him company along the way.

The Magic Tree House: Space Mission

Grade 3 and up

Experience a wondrous journey based on the popular children's book series. Travel with brother-sister duo Jack and Annie in their Magic Tree House as they investigate six questions left behind for them in a mysterious note.

Technology

Dawn of the Space Age

Grade 4 and up, 45 minutes

Trace the origins of space exploration starting with the launch of Sputnik in October 1957 through the first Moon landing in 1969. Then move into the era of robotic explorers whizzing past or landing on distant worlds. And look ahead to commercial exploration of near Earth space and the dream of space tourism.

Just for Fun

Led Zeppelin

Grade 5 and up, 50 minutes

Experience many of Led Zeppelin’s classics in 5.1 surround sound set to immersive and surrealistic computer-generated effects.

Let It Snow

All Ages, 30 minutes

Celebrate the winter season with this holiday music show. Artistic impressions of various popular holiday music come to life on the dome, transporting the entire family to a magical wonderland of music and light.

Nitewalk

Grade 3 and up, 10 minutes

Take a spooky walk through a cemetery, caves and dark corridors. Not recommended for small children or those easily spooked!

Pink Floyd’s Dark Side of the Moon

Grade 5 and up, 45 minutes

Pink Floyd’s progressive 8th album is put to stunning visuals that will send you to the moon. The music you know is taken to a new level when combined with crisp laser graphics and shown on the planetarium’s dome.

Pink Floyd’s The Wall

Grade 5 and up, 60 minutes

Experience “The Wall” like never before. Our Pink Floyd series culminates with the band’s 11th studio album set to stunning laser graphics.

Pink Floyd’s Wish You Were Here

Grade 5 and up, 50 minutes

This music light show features the music of Pink Floyd's album “Wish You Were Here” synchronized with video light effects created by Starlight Productions.

Space Shapes

Under 6 year olds, 9 minutes

There are many shapes in both the day and night sky. An examination of the Sun, Moon and Earth will show that many things are round like a ball. However, not all things are round like a ball; some are round and like a pancake! Within this short program aimed at young children, our narrator introduces his audience to the motions and shapes of objects that make up our Solar System.

SpacePark 360

Grade 5 and up, 45 minutes

Travel through an amusement park that spans the Solar System. Computer generated graphics create unique but somewhat familiar rides at each of the planets.

SpacePark 360 Infinity

Grade 4 and up

SpacePark 360 Infinity is a full-dome theme park ride that whips you along on roller coaster rides around the sun, through Saturn’s rings, around Earth and even on a distant exoplanet. Be prepared to hang on and have fun!

Kalamazoo Valley Museum
General Admission Is Free

230 North Rose Street
Kalamazoo, MI 49007
800.772.3370 | 269.373.7990
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The Kalamazoo Valley Museum is operated by Kalamazoo Valley Community College and is governed by its Board of Trustees.

Site by NK

2021 American Alliance of Museums.
All rights reserved.

2021 Kalamazoo Valley Museum.
All rights reserved.