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Science Education Outreach
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Science Education Center Staff

College of Arts and Sciences
Dr. Karl Kunkel, Dean

Department Chairs/Interim Chairs
Dr. Dixie Smith, Biology
Dr. Petar Dvornic, Chemistry
Dr. David Kuehn, Physics

Faculty
Dr. Cynthia Ford, Biology
Dr. Irene Zegar, Chemistry
Dr. Charles Blatchley, Physics

Assisting Faculty
Dr. Dixie Smith, Biology
Dr. Carolyn Fehrenbach, Teaching and Leadership
Kathleen Spillman, Teaching and Leadership

Planetarium     Planetarium

L. Russell Kelce Planetarium

The planning of Yates Hall, a Math and Physics building occurred from 1962-1963. The President of the university, Dr. Leonard H. Axe, insisted that the building include a planetarium. There were, however, no funds available to pay for a star projector for the planetarium. In the fall of 1963, Mrs. Gladys Kelce provided funds to pay for the planetarium as a memorial to her husband, L. Russell Kelce. The planetarium opened in July of 1964, and saw 10,000 visitors the first year. Most of these visitors were from schools.

Today, the planetarium still provides shows for schools (elementary, secondary, and university), churches, and other groups, as well as public shows. Schools, churches, groups, etc. can schedule private shows to fit their needs. Each show features a tour of the current night sky and a topical program.

The planetarium has a seating capacity of around 60 individuals and is wheelchair accessible. The projector, a Spitz A3P, is capable of projecting stars, constellations, planets, the sun, the moon (and phases), daily motion of the sky, yearly motion of the sky, and motion to view the sky from any latitude on Earth. The planetarium also uses slides and music during shows.

Public shows for the fall semester will be the second Monday of each month, from 6pm to 7pm, beginning September 8.  It is $3 per person, which can be paid at the door.

For information on scheduling a private show, click here to email Mrs. Desirae Tyler, secretary for the Physics Department or call (620) 235-4391.