Thanks to the generosity of the Reach for the Stars campaign donors, you can experience the all-new Carr-Fles Planetarium, West Michigan’s only free planetarium, on the Muskegon Community College campus.
Features: State-of-the-art digital projection, sound and lighting systems. An all-new library of shows. Modern theater seating. New domed ceiling.
Admission: Free and open to the public.
Showtimes: 7 p.m.
When: Tuesdays and Thursdays, September through June
Location: Room 135, Muskegon Community College, 221 S. Quarterline Rd., Muskegon, MI
Want to donate for acquiring new programs at Carr-Fles Planetarium? Click here.
Want to schedule a private showing?
Private shows, for groups of 15 or more during the day and 20 or more during the evening, may be reserved by calling (231) 777-0289. Teachers or group chaperones are encouraged to select one of the appropriate titles and schedule their visit two to three weeks in advance.
2015-16 Planetarium Shows
August 25 – October 29, 2015
This show explores a timeless question: Do other planets like Earth exist? Through the discovery of exoplanets, the hundreds of planets that have been found orbiting stars beyond the Sun, we have learned that our solar system is not alone in the universe and have had to redefine our understanding of planets and solar systems. With rapidly improving technology and endeavors like the Kepler Telescope, the discovery of exoplanets represents one step closer to the possibility of finding an Earth-like world. How will this change how we view our place in the universe? The program will be followed by a brief tour of the current night sky, using the planetarium. This is a 35-minute presentation.
November 3 – December 3, 2015
Anyone who has read the Bible has learned of the glory and the wonder of the “Star” that declared the birth of Jesus Christ. Yet, it seems few people of that time, including King Herod’s court astronomers, were aware of the star’s appearance. “Mystery of the Christmas Star” investigates possible dates for the sighting of the “Star,” and looks at significant astronomical events visible in the sky in those time frames. See which of the “sky signs” was remarkable enough to have caused the Wise Men to travel over 600 miles through the desert from Babylon to Bethlehem. The program will be followed by a brief tour of the current night sky, using the planetarium. This is a 35-minute presentation.
January 12 – February 25, 2016
March 8 – March 31, 2016
A fury is building on the surface of the Sun – high-velocity jets, a fiery tsunami wave that reaches 100,000 kilometers high, rising loops of electrified gas. What’s driving these strange phenomena? How will they affect planet Earth? Find the answers as we venture into the seething interior of our star. Solar Superstorms is a major new production that takes viewers into the tangle of magnetic fields and superhot plasma that vent the Sun’s rage in dramatic flares, violent solar tornadoes, and the largest eruptions in the solar system: Coronal Mass Ejections. The show features one of the most intensive efforts ever made to visualize the inner workings of the sun, including a series of groundbreaking scientific visualizations computed on the giant new supercomputing initiative, Blue Waters, based at the National Center for Supercomputing Applications (NCSA), University of Illinois. Brace yourself for the onslaught of the next… Solar Superstorm. This is a 35-minute presentation.
April 5 – April 21, 2016
May 17 – June 9, 2016
The scene was 74,000 years ago, on the island of Sumatra. A volcanic eruption triggered the sudden and violent collapse of a vast regional plateau. Toba, as the volcano is known today, was the largest volcanic eruption in the last 25 million years. But Earth has seen far larger. 250 million years ago, an eruption in what’s now Siberia lasted a million years and was probably responsible for the greatest episode of mass extinction in Earth’s history. Supervolcanoes is an immersive planetarium show that looks back at rare classes of eruptions that have marshaled the energy that lurks, like a sleeping dragon, beneath the surface of planet Earth. The program moves beyond Earth to explore the impact of giant volcanic eruptions around our solar system. Audiences will fly down to Neptune’s frigid moon Triton, and onto the ultimate volcanic world: Jupiter’s moon Io. On a visit to a legendary North American hot spot, Yellowstone National Park, the film asks: can a supervolcano erupt in our time? This is a 35-minute presentation.