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Mather Planetarium

News and Special Events

Contact Mather Planetarium  

Mather Planetarium

Name: Dr. Karen Schwarz, Associate Professor
Phone: 610-436-2788


News and Special Events

Planetarium News

Special Events

July 13, 2019  5:00-10:00pm

Apollo 50th Anniversary Celebration

 Apollo Logo

On July 19, 1969, Apollo 11 made history when the first men walked on the Moon.  The Mather Planetarium will be hosting a special event to celebrate the 50th anniversary of these extraordinary NASA Apollo missions.  We invite everyone to join us for an evening of activities including a keynote presentation, planetarium shows, telescope viewing, and hands-on activities.  See the table below for details.
Activity Location

5-6 PM

Keynote Speaker John Conrad, NASA Solar System Ambassador

"Lunar Reflections: Before, During, and After Apollo 11"

After billions of years with only one satellite (our Moon), we Earthlings entered the Space Age only 62 years ago with the launch of our first manmade satellites.  And then – within only about a decade – America’s Apollo astronauts were standing on the Moon.  Here’s the story of those amazing early decades of spaceflight – the 50's and 60's – and how and why the world made such rapid progress.  From his perspective as an active space program participant, our speaker will bring you the highlights of Apollo 11, as well as personal insights and stories from those years, ending with a brief look ahead to what’s next.

Our Speaker:  John Conrad followed his childhood interest in space and spaceflight – just before the dawn of the Space Age – earning his Astronautical Engineering degrees from the US Air Force Academy and Purdue University and going straight into leadership of space programs for the Air Force, NASA, and the aerospace industry.  Upon retirement, he was selected by NASA/JPL as a NASA Solar System Ambassador.  In this role, he reaches a broad range of audiences with the latest and greatest in NASA’s programs and achievements.  His active participation in the space launch programs of the 60's have given him first-hand experiences, insights, and stories which he’ll share in his talk.

Note: This presentation is aimed at an adult audience.  Seating is limited.

Main Hall 168

6-10 PM

Planetarium Show

Fulldome Movie "Apollo 11: Man's First Steps onto the Moon"

This movie is a production of the Jenks Planetarium and students from Jenks High School, OK.  There are no live shows for this event.  Showings will run every half hour starting at 6PM.

Free, timed-tickets will be given out at the door starting at 5:30PM.  Six ticket limit per person.  Seating is limited; first come, first served.


Mather Planetarium

Schmucker Science Center Link


6-10 PM

Telescope Viewing

Members of the Chester County Astronomical Society will have their telescopes out for viewing the Moon, Jupiter, Saturn, and other astronomical objects. 

Telescope viewing is weather dependent.

Academic Quad

6-10 PM

Hands-on Activities

Activities for all ages will be going on all evening in the Schmucker Science Center and on the Academic Quad.  Come and make a solar system that will fit in your pocket, learn why the Moon has phases, create your own space helmet, and more!

Schmucker Science Center Link & Academic Quad

 This special event is FREE and open to the general public.  Visitors may park in any WCU commuter parking lot free of charge.  The closest lot is Lot K, behind the Sykes Student Union Building.  Additional parking can be found in Lot M and the New Street Garage.  Parking meters must be paid.  A map of the campus, with the locations of the various activities, can be found here.  Questions should be directed to
Dr. Karen Schwarz

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