Statewide Astronomy Night

Graphic logo for Statewide Astronomy Night
Statewide Astronomy Night

Looking at the Sky with New Eyes
Statewide Astronomy Night

The Kalamazoo Valley Museum will participate in Statewide Astronomy Night (SWAN) on April 17 from 5 to 8:30 p.m. A number of astronomy-related activities for all ages will be presented free of charge. SWAN is coordinated by Michigan State University’s annual Science Festival.

Planetarium staff and volunteers and will share their knowledge through interactive demonstrations and discussions. Participants will have the opportunity to learn about telescopes, make a planisphere, see demonstrations of how to observe the Sun safely, and take in a planetarium show that discusses the relationships between the Sun, Earth, and Moon, or one that explores the history of astronomy. Light refreshments will be served until 7:30 p.m.

In addition, Eric Schreur, retired KVM Planetarium Coordinator, will present "Take Your Family Stargazing" under the dark skies of the planetarium at 6:30 p.m. There, Eric will provide guidance and tips on how families can begin a series of stargazing adventures together. At 7:30 p.m., Dr. Axel Mellinger of Central Michigan University will present "Photographing the Milky Way: Giant Panorama and Time Lapse Videos" in the Stryker Theater. Dr. Mellinger's Milky Way photography frequently appears in magazines, textbooks, and film credits, including several shows that are presented in the KVM's planetarium.

While the event is free, tickets are needed for planetarium shows and speaking events. Tickets can be reserved online and picked up at the front desk. Any tickets not picked up at least 5 minutes before showtime will be made available to other patrons, so please plan to arrive early.

Venues around the state of Michigan will open their doors to help people see and connect with the beauty and science that lies overhead. Events and other sites participating in Michigan State’s Science Festival and Statewide Astronomy Night can be found at