The Raritan Valley Community College Planetarium in Branchburg will present a variety of star shows and laser concerts in April, including programs for young children.
On Friday, April 10, RVCC’s Astronomy Club will host a special evening of activities in the Planetarium exhibit hall and in Room E 109. The evening also will feature two star shows:
Magic Tree House: Space Mission, Friday, April 10, 6 p.m.
Join Jack and Annie as they discover the secrets of the Sun, Moon, planets, space travel, and more. Who can help them answer the questions left for them by the mysterious "M"? The show is based on the same-titled, best-selling series of novels. (Recommended for ages 5 and older)
Exploding Universe, Friday, April 10, 7 p.m. (First-time screening at RVCC Planetarium)
The universe we see today is the product of explosive events. As the universe has transformed into its current state, even the most elementary particles have endured. The show follows the path of one of these “particles,” a proton, as it participates in nature’s astounding events of rebirth and renewal. (Recommended for ages 10 to adult)
The following regular shows also have been planned in April:
Perfect Little Planet, Saturdays, April 11, 18 and 25, 3 p.m.
A family from another star system is seeking the perfect vacation spot. Fly over the surface of Pluto, our best known dwarf planet; sail through the rings of Saturn; feel Jupiter’s lightning storms; and walk on the surface of Mars. Which destination will the family choose? (Recommended for ages 6-12)
Laser Magic, Saturdays, April 11, 18 and 25, 4 p.m.
Enjoy a laser and video concert featuring songs by a variety of artists. Songs include “We Are All Made of Stars” by Moby; “Jungle Love” by the Steve Miller Band; “Best Day of My Life” by American Authors; and “Let It Go,” sung by Idina Menzel. (Recommended for ages 6-12)
Spring Skies, Saturdays, April 11, 18 and 25, 7 p.m.
Learn about the stars and constellations visible in tonight’s sky. Discover where to find Jupiter and Venus in the evening. Weather permitting, the 3M Observatory will be open after the show.
Classic Rock, Saturday, April 11, 8 p.m.
Enjoy a laser concert featuring a variety of classic rock songs including “Touch of Gray” (Grateful Dead), “Houses of the Holy” (Led Zeppelin), “Another One Bites the Dust (Queen), “You Took the Words Right out of My Mouth” (Meatloaf), “Come Sail Away” (Styx) and “Sgt. Pepper’s Lonely Hearts Club Band” (Beatles).
NJ Rocks, Saturdays, April 18 and 25, 8 p.m.
Listen to songs by artists with a New Jersey connection—including Springsteen, Bon Jovi, Sinatra, Blondie, Spin Doctors, Kool and the Gang, and Frankie Valli—while lasers draw pictures on the dome overhead.
Space Shapes & Tycho to the Moon, Sunday, April 19, 2 p.m.
What shape is the Moon? Are the Moon and its orbit “round” like a ball, or more like a pancake shape? Play connect-the-dots with the stars to find triangles, squares and constellations. Fly around the solar system to learn about the planets. Then we’ll meet Tycho—a dog who doesn’t just howl at the Moon, he wants to go there. Blast off on an amazing ride and learn about night and day, space travel, the Moon’s phases and features of the lunar surface, and more. (Recommended for ages 5-10)
Storybooks in Space, Sunday, April 19, 3 p.m.
Enjoy story time as we learn about the stars and planets. (Recommended for ages 4-8)
Planetarium show tickets cost $7 for one show or $13 for two shows on the same day. Reservations are strongly suggested for all Planetarium shows. For additional information, call 908-231-8805 or visitwww.raritanval.edu/planetarium.
In 2015, the Planetarium at RVCC is celebrating 25 years of bringing astronomy to the children and adults of New Jersey.