W.J. McCallion Planetarium


Department of Physics & Astronomy > W.J. McCallion Planetarium
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Banner and navigation constellation images from the open source planetarium software, Stellarium:


Current Schedule

Reserve your tickets and manage your reservations here. Tickets may be available at the door, but this is not guaranteed. If a show is sold out you can choose to be added to the waiting list, and you will be notified if seats become available. Please note that if you are late, your reserved tickets may be given away to those without reservations.

Date Show Description
July 27, 2016
The Great Debate: Galaxies and Their Place in the Universe
Less than a hundred years ago, many astronomers thought that the Universe consisted of just our home galaxy, the Milky Way. Others believed that the Milky Way was just one of many 'island universes'. Our journey through the night sky begins with these interesting patches of light, including the most famous Messier objects. Explore the Great Debate between astronomers Harlow Shapley and Heber Curtis, the arguments presented by each side, and how we know today that many of these spiral 'nebulae' are in fact spiral 'galaxies'. Finally, discover the importance of galaxies to our current understanding of cosmology and the Universe as a whole.
Show Times: 7:00pm
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August 3, 2016
Introductory Astronomy for Kids
Join us at the planetarium for a show especially geared towards a younger audience (around 8-15years old) and their family members. We'll first take you on a tour around the night skies seen from Hamilton, and then on to the planets in our Solar System. Along the way, other fascinating objects inside and outside of our own Galaxy will also be shown if time and interest permit.
Show Time: 7:00pm
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August 10, 2016
Navigational Astronomy
Connect to your ancestors by learning how to navigate by the Moon, planets and stars! Long ago before technologies like the global positioning system (or even a compass!) people would reference astronomical configurations and positioning in order to navigate. Before the advent of calendars (a construction credited to astronomy!) people would use stellar positions in order to indicate meeting times. Come to the planetarium to learn how to find your position and bearings anywhere on Earth by the stars whether you are deep in a forest, on a mountaintop or even on the high seas!
Show Time: 7:00pm
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August 17, 2016
Dammit Jim, I'm an astronomer!
Come explore our Galaxy aboard the Starship Enterprise. In this show, we will display and describe some of the celestial objects talked about in various Star Trek series and movies. Phasers will be set to fun as we observe the wondrous phenomena that our future starships will perhaps one day see up close.
Show Time: 7:00pm
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August 24, 2016
I'm a human being, and if you are too, you probably live on the planet Earth. That planet orbits a star called the Sun, in a galaxy called the Milky Way, which itself is embedded in the universe. I think that's pretty interesting, and so I've always wanted to know more about this place that we call home. I study how the galaxies we see in the universe grow and change over time, and how the things inside them (stars and gas) interact with each other. I use computer simulations to study how these things happen over billions of years. During my shows, I will show you a little slice of this universe, and how we fit into it. How did the Universe begin? What happened in the first 10 billion years before our Solar System existed? How will the Universe end? Find out in this show about the origin, evolution, large-scale structures, and fate of the Universe.
Show Time: 7:00pm
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August 31, 2016
Tour around the Solar System
Where are the planets in our current skies? How do we look for them, and how will they change their appearances? What do the planets look like through telescopes or from the spacecraft in orbit around them? This show will take you to the edge of our Solar System and back... to the hills of Mars, the icy rings of Saturn, Jupiter's volcanic moon and more.
Show Time: 7:00pm
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