The Carr-Fles Planetarium is currently closed for the summer and will reopen on August 22, 2022.
The planetarium aids in the understanding of astronomy by projecting images of the stars, planets, and constellations on a domed ceiling, and it is the only free, public planetarium in west Michigan. It is located in room 1072 of MCC’s main campus building. In addition to use for astronomy classes, the planetarium also hosts an average of 5,000 visitors a year.
First opened in 1972, the planetarium was named in named in honor of Dr. Robert Fles, who served on the first Board of Trustees, and MCC instructor Stan Carr, who taught math and astronomy and was instrumental in designing and building the planetarium. In 2012, the successful Reach for the Stars campaign raised funds for a $4 million dollar renovation, including state-of-the-art digital projection, sound, and lighting systems, a new library of shows, and a completely updated theater environment and domed ceiling. MCC is dedicated to increasing access to education and promoting lifelong learning, and we will keep this resource available to all community members without charge.
Two Types of Shows
When we reopen in August, we will have two types of shows for visitors:
Public Walk-In Shows
- No reservations needed and no minimum number of people.
- Tuesdays and Thursdays @ 7:00pm.
- Programs run about 30 minutes and will change 4 times in the school year.
Large Group Shows by Appointment
- Minimum of 15 people. Please schedule at least 2-3 weeks in advance.
- Showtimes can be reserved Mondays, Tuesdays, and Thursdays, 9:00am-7:00pm, plus Wednesdays 9:00am-1:00pm. No Fri, Sat, or Sun shows.
- We have 44 in theater seats + an additional five spaces for those who use wheelchairs. Larger groups can schedule multiple showtimes to accommodate everyone.
Click here for a list of programs from which to choose.
If you would like to make a large group reservation or be added to an email list for walk-in show updates, contact the planetarium secretary, Tamera Owens, firstname.lastname@example.org, (231) 777-0289.
All shows, both reserved and walk-in, are free.
Bartley Science Museum
Visitors may also want to see our interactive science museum across the hall from the planetarium. Click here for information about the museum. Plan on an additional 20-30 minutes for the museum.