The Richmond Register

June 3, 2013

EKU Planetarium welcomes groups this summer to see new shows, enhancements


Special to the Register

RICHMOND — Eastern Kentucky University’s Hummel Planetarium, with several recent equipment upgrades already in place and more to come, welcomes groups to see the improvements and its new programs this summer.

A new projection system, designed and installed by Information Technology staff at the University, has replaced outdated, unreliable equipment, allowing programs  to be displayed across the full dome.

Four new programs – “Perfect Little Planet,” “Dark,” “Life: A Cosmic Story,” and “Sea Monsters: A Prehistoric Adventure” – have been well received by school audiences this spring.

“Students have the feeling they are actually moving and immersed in the show,” said James Hughes, interim manager of Hummel Planetarium. “They leave the show talking about how cool it was.”

This summer, the Planetarium will schedule showings of any of the programs by appointment to groups of 10 or more. For more details, including costs, call the planetarium at 622-1547. Patrons also can schedule an event in the Planetarium through EKU Conferencing and Events at 622-1444. For more details on each program, visit www.planetarium.eku.edu/school-shows-1.

In addition to continued “fine-tuning” of the projection equipment and more upgrades on “the astronomy side,” the planetarium may soon add approximately 30 seats.

Looking ahead to this fall and the return of students to Hummel, Hughes said the planetarium “will connect current shows and purchase new shows to meet the needs of teachers when the new science standards are finalized. We will also provide teachers information on the content of the shows to help with the correlation.”

Hughes added that when the Planetarium resumes its public shows, dates and times will be listed at www.planetarium.eku.edu.

Hummel Planetarium opened on the EKU campus in 1988.