Statewide Astronomy Night (SWAN)
Friday, April 15th at a location near you!
Spend an evening exploring the wonders of the universe with astronomers and experts in the field! The first ever Michigan Statewide Astronomy Night is an exciting partnership of planetariums and observatories across Michigan, who have coordinated a special evening to enjoy the presentations and activities that reveal the secrets of our night sky. All host sites are committed to providing a fun and informative experience for all visitors. Observing is planned at all sites, and while activities and presentations may vary between sites, all will be held rain or moonshine!
Point of Departure: Astronomy in Chile
Presented by Shannon Schmoll
6:00 - 6:50 PM at Abrams Planetarium, 755 Science Rd, East Lansing
Chile currently houses 40% of the world's astronomy infrastructure. That number is expected to reach 70% in the next decade or less. Come hear all about Chile and why it's such a perfect place for the world's cutting edge telescopes from someone who travelled there as part of the NSF-funded Astronomy in Chile Educator Ambassador Program. This presentation will involve full-dome immersive photographs taken throughout Chile to help you anser "Why Chile?" yourself!
From Earth to Universe
Presented by Abrams Planetarium
8:00 -9:00 PM at Abrams Planetarium, 755 Science Rd, East Lansing
Follow along as we leave our home to take you out to the colorful birthplaces and burial grounds of stars, and then still further out, beyond the Milky Way, to the unimaginable immensity of a myriad of galaxies. Along the way, you will learn about the history of astronomy, the invention of the telescope, and today's giant telescopes that allow us to continue to probe ever deeper into the Universe. Seats will be first come first served and are limited to 141 seats. Doors will open at 7:45 and the show will begin at 8:00 p.m.
9:00 - 11:00 PM at 4299 Pavilion Dr, East Lansing
Come join the MSU Observatory in observing the wonders of the night sky. We will be open Friday night, rain or shine, for observing for SWAN with additional hands-on activities. We will also be open Saturday night, weather permitting, for observing only.
Lighting Up Dark Matter
Presented by the Univeristy Lowbrow Astronomers and Professor Eric Bell
7:30 - 8:30 PM at Angell Hall Auditorium C, 435 State Street, Ann Arbor
One crucial componenet of our current understanding of galaxies and cosmology is that most of the matter in the Universe is in the form of dark matter- an as-yet-unidentified form of matter that appears to neither give off nor interact with light. In this talk, Professor Bell will describe what we have learned about the distribution of dark matter around galaxies by studying stars in the sparsely-populated idstant outskirts of galaxies, well outside where one would expect to find stars.
Angell Hall Astronomy Open House
Presented by the Student Astronomical Society, University of Michigan Department of Astronomy, and University Lowbrow Astronomers
9:00 - 11:00 PM at Angell Hall 5th floor and room 3118 (planetarium), 435 State Street, Ann Arbor
Drop in anytime between 9 and 11 PM and check out demonstrations by the Lowbrow Astronomers. Weather permitting, head upstairs and check out the skies with the Student Astronomical Society (SAS), or get a tour of the observatory if its cloudy. Be sure to catch a planetarium show run by SAS at 9 or 9:40 PM.
Detroit Observatory Open House
Presented by the Bentley Historical Library, Department of Astronomy, and UM Museum of Natural History
8:00 - 10:30 PM at the Detroit Observatory, 1398 E Ann Street, Ann Arbor
Drop in anytime between 8 and 10:30 PM to check out the historic Detroit Observatory in Ann Arbor. Go on a self-guided tour of the building and talk to the docents, or stop in the Library and visit the UM Museum of Natural History's walk-up planetarium. Learn about the sky tonight, or the latest astronomy news in this interactive presentation. Weather permitting, we'll open the dome around 9 PM and take a look at the Moon through the 1857 Henry Fitz telescope.
An Evening Under Ypsilanti Skies
7:30 - 11 PM at the EMU Planetarium, Room 402 of the Mark Jefferson Science Complex (The Sphere)
Guests will be given a tour of the night sky they would expect to see via the planetarium and then be treated to the real version from our observatory deck across the courtyard at the Sherzer Observatory, weather permitting!
Wayne State Planetarium
5:00 - 10:30 PM at the Old Main Building, Room 209, 4841 Cass Avenue, Detroit
Celebrate SWAN at WSU with a combination of presentations and hands-on activities! Explore black holes and the evolution of the Universe with professors from the Department of Physics and Astronomy! Create aliens to inhabit far off exoplanets! Explore the wonders of the sky in our planetarium and outside with a variety of telescopes!
Michigan Science Center
5020 John R Street, Detroit
Join us for hands-on activities including Stomp Rockets, alka seltzer rockets, and astrolabes (the simple one). You can also learn how to read a star chart and observe the night sky with the Ford Amateur Astronomy Club.
James C. Veen Observatory
Presented by the Grand Rapids Amateur Astronomical Association
The Grand Rapids Public Museum's Chaffee Planetarium presents hands on activities for kids, telescope demonstrations and presentations at the Veen Observatory, beginning at 8:00 p.m. Observing the moon, Jupiter and other sky objects will follow as the sky darkens (weather permitting). Assisting with the event will be members of the Grand Rapids Amateur Astronomical Association, who operate the Observatory with support from the Grand Rapids Public Museum. There are three large telescopes, one which can be operated robotic-ally. Portable telescopes will also be set up on the grounds for visitors to use.
8:00 - 11:00 PM at the James C. Veen Observatory, 3308 Kissing Rock Avenue SE, Lowell
Besser Museum and Planetarium
6:30 to 10:00 PM at the Besser Museum and Planetarium, 491 Johnson Street, Alpena
Delta College Planetarium and Learning Center
7:00- 10:00 PM at the Delta College Planetarium and Learning Center, 100 Center Avenue, Bay City
Come enjoy special shows about stargazing, telescopes and hot topics in astronomy. Includes hands-on activities for children. Weather permitting, audiences can explore the real sky from the planetarium’s rooftop observation deck beginning at 9:00pm. Admission is free.
Headlands International Dark Sky Park
8:00 - 10:00 PM at the Headlands, 15675 Headlands Road, Mackinaw City
Just as the constellation Cygnus, the swan, begins to make its seasonal return to northern night skies, so do we gather under the stars tonight to celebrate SWAN (Statewide Astronomy Night). This statewide event is designed to raise awareness about the essential natue of knowing the stars. Guests to Headlands can expect guided tours of the season's celestial majesty, interactive games, naked-eye and telescopic views into the wonder of it all. No coast, no RSVP needed. Rain or shine!
Shiras Planetarium Open House
5:00 - 10:30 PM at the Shiras Planetarium, 1203 W. Fair Avenue, Marquette
Join the Shiras Planetarium for astronomy lectures and activies from 5 to 7 PM and dark sky observation at the M-28 turnoff starting at 8:30.