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lee carkner in the planetarium
Dr. Lee Carkner in the John Deere Planetarium.

Planetarium open house planned Oct. 12

Augustana College's John Deere Planetarium invites the community to its annual fall open house from 7:30-9 p.m. Saturday, Oct. 12.

The planetarium, located at 820 38th Street, will offer indoor and outdoor programs led by planetarium director Dr. Lee Carkner. Admission is free.

The evening’s events will include a planetarium show where the wonders of the night sky will be presented on the facility’s 30-foot dome. Views of astronomical objects, including the planet Jupiter and the first-quarter moon will be provided via the telescopes of the Carl 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, also will 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. Highlights include a wall of glowing, fluorescent rocks, a cast of a Tyrannosaurus rex skull, and a complete 22-foot long skeleton of Cryolophosaurus, a large crested carnivorous dinosaur discovered in Antarctica discovered by retired Augustana professor Dr. William Hammer.

The observing areas are unheated, so viewers should appropriate to the weather. In the event of cloudy conditions, telescope views may not be possible but the indoor programs will still be offered.


Ashleigh Johnston, 309-794-7833 

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