These seasonal star shows at the Neag Planetarium are great for all ages!
Accompanied by narrators Aesop the owl and Socrates the mouse, we follow Orion’s adventures as he grows to manhood, battles mythical beasts, foils the plot of an evil king and wins the heart of Artemis, the beautiful moon-goddess. By the end of the story, we learn how the constellation Orion was placed in the sky, forever turning overhead throughout the seasons.
Allison, a bright student eager to learn about the night sky, and Michael, her very uninterested brother, embark on an outing into the frigid winter night for a guided tour of the heavens. Jack Frost teaches the children and the audience about stars and winter constellation lore, and facts about star color and temperature, as well as an open-minded and imaginative approach to better understand the stellar pictures.
This presentation traces the history and development of many of the world’s most endearing holiday customs, all of which involve lighting up the winter season — from the burning Yule log, sparkling Christmas tree lights and candles in windows, to the lighting of luminarias in the American Southwest and the traditional ritual of the Hanukkah Menorah. The show also recounts the historical religious and cultural rituals practiced during the time of winter solstice. It also takes a look at some of our more light-hearted seasonal traditions: from gift-giving and kissing under the mistletoe, to songs about lords a-leaping and ladies dancing, and the custom of decking the halls with greenery and candles. St. Nicholas, Sinterklaas, Kris Kringle, Father Christmas, and Santa Claus all drop by as well. Naturally, there is some astronomy in Season of Light. Audiences learn a selection of Northern hemisphere winter constellations, and find out why we even have seasons, as we demonstrate the Sun’s path across the sky throughout the year, and the Earth’s tilt and orbit around the Sun. And of course, the program explores the possible astronomical explanations for a “Star over Bethlehem” in the last quarter of the show: comets, meteors, novae and supernovae, and planetary conjunctions.
Exhibits, events, & extras