The Clarion Call report
Fifty years ago, the planetarium as we know it at Clarion University opened. It was named after Dr. Donald Peirce, who was the chairman of the Science Department at the time. Flash forward half a century and we now have a forty-foot dome that can project any part of the night sky at any time, as long as it is in the northern hemisphere. It is one of the largest planetariums in the state. The projections are created by a star ball, which creates very clear images of the stars; it as if you are under the real sky.
Throughout the academic year, the planetarium has free shows for students and the public. The series is called “Stars over Clarion” and students can attend at 7 p.m. and 8 p.m. on the first Thursdays and Fridays of every month. The shows are only around fifty minutes but packed with information and fun. They present every cool and interesting thing that has happened above in the past month. Stick around after the 8 p.m. show to get a chance to observe the night sky with telescopes, depending on the weather.
A plethora of positive reviews were heard after the show from students. Many spectators, students, faculty and community alike loved hearing the commentary from the presenters and said they learned a lot. They focused on the sky above Clarion, so people knew what to look for every night.
The planetarium puts on a special holiday show the first two Fridays in December at 7 p.m. Every year, there is a week of laser shows, but that week has not been decided yet. All of the information regarding the planetarium, such as upcoming shows and facts about astrology, can be found on the Clarion University Planetarium Facebook page.