Planetarium Shows & Descriptions

Click each show title to see a description and teacher resource sheet, which includes key concepts covered and the Florida State Standards connected to each show. Upcoming show dates & times are in the right column or you can link to the full calendar to see more choices.

Planetarium Shows

Amazing Universe

Take a roller coaster ride across the universe, zoom past planets, watch the birth & death of stars, and fly through a black hole where time and space are warped beyond our current ability to fully understand. The familiar constellations of the night sky are briefly presented, followed by a discussion of the solar system and our place in it. The stage quickly moves beyond our solar neighborhood to study the life cycles of the stars. Backing out of the Milky Way galaxy, viewers ultimately reach the edge of the observable universe to witness first-hand the large scale structure of the Cosmos.

The show includes a live customized Digistar tour of the current evening sky and basic astronomy lessons.

  • Age Level:  General Audience (Grades 6 +)
  • Maximum participants per session: 210
  • Location: Planetarium Theater
  • Running time: 40 minutes (add 20 min. for Star Walk)
Teacher Resource Sheet [Download PDF]

Big/How Big is the Universe?

One of the most asked questions about the Universe is “How big is it?” and that’s one of the hardest to answer. BIG has been produced to tackle this question and does so by taking the audience on an immersive journey to the far reaches of the Universe that we are currently able to observe. BIG combines a light-hearted storytelling style with computer animation, stop-motion character animation and a surround sound musical score to bring a really big subject down to Earth.

The show includes a live customized Digistar II tour of the current evening sky.

Age Level: General Audience (Grades 6 +).
Maximum participants per session:  210
Location: Planetarium Theater
Running Time: 40 minutes (add 20 min. for Star Walk)

Teacher Resource Sheet [Download PDF]
Educator's Guide [Download PDF]

Sponsored in part by the State of Florida, Department of State, Division of Cultural Affairs and the Florida Arts Council, and the National Endowment for the Arts.

Cardboard Rocket

Embark on a dynamic adventure as two children spend a night touring the solar system alongside their ships navigator — a talking astronomy book. After getting their mother to agree to let them spend the night in their backyard a brother and sister team up to build a cardboard rocket so they can travel into space. But mom agrees to let them go “only” as far as the planets.

The Secret of the Cardboard Rocket is one of our most engaging and popular shows with amazing full-dome graphics and video animation. The show features a state-of-the-art 5.1 soundtrack with spectacular effects created at George Lucas' Skywalker Ranch.

The show includes a live customized Digistar II tour of the current evening sky and basic astronomy lessons.

  • Age Level:  Grades 3-5 (1st-8th Grade standards also covered)
  • Maximum participants per session: 210
  • Location: Planetarium Theater
  • Running time: 35 minutes
  • Includes live customized Star Walk (add 20 minutes)
Teacher Resource Sheet [Download PDF]

Cosmic Perceptions

Our understanding of the universe depends upon how our brains interpret what our eyes see. This presentation takes you into the human eye, down the optic nerve, and into the brain to understand its inner workings. Cosmic Perceptions also examines the Hubble Space Telescope, the "Big Bang" Theory, and ideas about the universe from ancient Stonehenge, Egypt, and classical Greece. In Astronomy, we are limited primarily to only one sense – our sight. But while our eyes can only “see” the visible range of the much broader electromagnetic spectrum, we have developed technology that extends this range from the ultra-low radio frequency through high energy gamma-rays, thus changing our perception and providing us with a clearer understanding of how the universe works.

The show includes a customized live Digistar tour of the current evening sky and basic astronomy lessons.

  • Age Level:  General Audience (Grades 9 +)
  • Maximum participants per session: 210
  • Location: Planetarium Theater
  • Running time: 45 minutes (add 20 minutes for Star Walk)
Teacher Resource Sheet [Download PDF]

Cowboy Astronomer

The Cowboy Astronomer is a skillfully woven tapestry of star tales and Native American legends, combined with constellation identification, star-hopping, and astronomy tidbits — all told from the unique viewpoint of a cowboy astronomer who has traveled the world plying his trade and learning the sky along the way.

Noted story teller Lynn Moroney recites two Native American star tales: the Fisher story of the cruel chieftain holding the birds of summer captive, and the Devil's Tower tale of the Seven Indian Maidens and the Bear.

The show includes a live, customized Digistar II tour of the current evening sky.

  • Age Level:  General Audience (Grades 3 +)
  • Maximum participants per session: 210
  • Location: Planetarium Theater
  • Running time: 40 minutes (add 20 min. for Star Walk)
Teacher Resource Sheet [Download PDF]

Dinosaurs

Planet of the Dinosaurs is a fast-paced, light-hearted show about some of the most fascinating creatures that ever lived. Archie, a laser-animated Archaeopteryx, is our guide through time. Along the way, we meet dinosaurs from each of the geologic periods when the dinosaurs were masters of the Earth and see the startling evidence that leads many modern paleontologists to believe that birds are descendants of dinosaurs.

The show includes a live customized Digistar tour of the current evening sky and basic astronomy lessons.

  • Age Level:  Grades 3-6 (K- 12th Standards also covered)
  • Maximum participants per session: 210
  • Location: Planetarium Theater
  • Running Time: 40 minutes (at 20 minutes for customized Star Walk).
Teacher Resource Sheet [Download PDF]

Explorers of Mauna Kea

This program explores the geological origins of the Hawaiian Islands and specifically of Mauna Kea, as well as the mountain’s cultural significance.  Students participate in an activity that demonstrates how the 36 mirrors of the Keck telescope are able to work together to collect light. The program also explores the unique set of factors (from its clear skies to its tropical location) that make Mauna Kea one of the best observatory sites on earth.

  • Age Level:  General Audience (Grades 6-12)
  • Maximum participants per session: 210
  • Location: Planetarium Theater
  • Running time: 44 minutes (add 15-20 min. for Star Walk)
Teacher Resource Sheet [Download PDF]

In My Backyard

In My Backyard is designed especially for young children and families. Using laser animation and traditional multi-media techniques, this show features story-telling, poetry and songs to encourage children to learn through listening and participating.

Narrated by popular Canadian Children Television host Fred Penner, this show carefully and gently introduces even the most timid child to the night sky.

  • Designed primarily for grades K-2 (3rd and 4th Grade standards also addressed)
  • Maximum participants per session: 210
  • Location: Planetarium Theater
  • Running time: 40 minutes (add 20 min. for Star Walk)
  • Teacher's activities guide available
Teacher Resource Sheet [Download PDF]

Larry Cat in Space

Larry Cat In Space is a playful, imaginative cartoon presentation about an inquisitive cat who takes a trip to the Moon. Through Larry's eyes, we observe his human family, a group of enthusiastic sky-watchers. Larry notes how human time differs from cat time. Diana takes a job on the Moon, and sadly leaves Larry behind. Larry figures out a way to hide in her clothes trunk. The trunk and Larry are loaded onto the Space Plane, which takes him to space station Freedom. Larry Cat In Space is primarily targeted at grades K-3, although everyone loves an entertaining, fun story! Parents and children alike will enjoy the show, and learn something about the Moon, too!

The show includes a live customized Digistar tour of the current evening sky and basic astronomy lessons.

  • Age Level:  Designed primarily for grades K-3rd Grade (4th–8th Grade standards also addressed)
  • Maximum participants per session: 210
  • Location: Planetarium Theater
  • Running time: 45 minutes (add 10-15 min. for Star Walk)
  • Teacher's activity guide available
Teacher Resource Sheet [Download PDF]

Legends of the Sky: Orion

Legends of the Night Sky: Orion takes a lighthearted and imaginative look at the myths and stories associated with the constellation Orion, the great hunter of the winter sky. The show brings the mythological Orion to life in a fun-filled, animated adventure.

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.

The show includes a live customized Digistar tour of the current evening sky and basic astronomy lessons.

  • Age Level:  General Audience (Grades 3 +)
  • Maximum participants per session: 210
  • Location: Planetarium Theater
  • Running time: 20 minutes (add 20-25  min. for Star Walk)
Teacher Resource Sheet [Download PDF]

Legends of the Sky: Perseus & Andromeda

Legend of the Night Sky: Perseus and Andromeda takes a lighthearted and imaginative look at the myths and stories associated with the constellations of Perseus & Andromeda.

Narrated by Aesop the owl and Socrates the mouse, the show brings to life the mythological figures of Perseus, Andromeda and a host of other characters in an action packed epic story of heroism, romance and of course Astronomy.

The show includes a live customized Digistar tour of the current evening sky and basic astronomy lessons.

  • Age Level:  General Audience (Grades 3 +)
  • Maximum participants per session: 210
  • Location: Planetarium Theater
  • Running time: 30 minutes (add 20 min. for Star Walk)
Teacher Resource Sheet [Download PDF]

Light Years from Andromeda

A journey between two galaxies spans human history – and reveals the secrets of the cosmos! Light Years From Andromeda in a story of cosmic distances, and humanity’s quest to understand the universe.  Take a journey of epic proportions across space and time!Light Years From Andromeda teaches the concepts of light speed, the light year and how astronomers use them to measure distances to some familiar celestial objects — the Moon, the Sun, the planets, nearby stars, and galaxies.

  • Age Level:  General Audience (4th – 6th Grade (K through 12th Grade standards also addressed)
  • Maximum participants per session: 210
  • Location: Planetarium Theater
  • Running time: 45 minutes (add 15 min. for Star Walk)
Teacher Resource Sheet [Download PDF]

Sponsored in part by the State of Florida, Department of State, Division of Cultural Affairs and the Florida Arts Council, and the National Endowment for the Arts.

Little Star

The Little Star That Could is a story about Little Star, an average yellow star in search of planets of his own to protect and warm. Along the way, he meets other stars and discovers that some stars are alone, but others are found in pairs or groups of three or more. Very large groups are called star clusters and are very far away. And the largest collections of stars are called galaxies like the one he lives in – the Milky Way.

The show includes a live customized Digistar tour of the current evening sky and basic astronomy lessons.

  • Age Level:  Grades K – 6th (Standards for 8th – 12th also covered)
  • Maximum participants per session: 210
  • Location: Planetarium Theater
  • Running time: 40 minutes (add 20 min. for Star Walk)
Teacher Resource Sheet [Download PDF]

Mars Quest

Mars Quest is a chronicle tracing our centuries-long cultural and scientific fascination with the planet Mars. Set in a theatrical style "three-act" form with an epilogue, it weaves a satisfying narrative of what Mars means to humanity. Includes a live customized Digistar tour of the current evening sky and basic astronomy lessons.

  • Age Level:  General Audience (Grades 5 +)
  • Maximum participants per session: 210
  • Location: Planetarium Theater
  • Running time: 45 minutes (add 15-20 min. for Star Walk)
Teacher Resource Sheet [Download PDF]

More Than Meets the Eye

After looking through a telescope have you ever thought, "But I thought it was gonna look real big and colorful . . . that fuzzy blotch is all there is"?

Too often science programs and printed media show only the ultra-colorful high resolution images of planets and galaxies, taken from spacecraft or big observatories. It’s perhaps understandable then to be dismayed that what we see through the eyepiece doesn’t quite match up.

To bridge the gap, Loch Ness Productions and artist Tim W. Kuzniar teamed up to produce More Than Meets the Eye using visuals depicting various planets and deep sky objects as we can actually expect to see them using binoculars and backyard telescopes. More Than Meets the Eye features that artwork, then compares the naked-eye views from our back yard with observatory astrophotos and spacecraft images.

  • Age Level:  General Audience (Grades 5+)
  • Maximum participants per session: 210
  • Location: Planetarium Theater
  • Running time: 30 minutes (add 20-25 min. for Star Walk)
Teacher Resource Sheet [Download PDF]

Oceans in Space

Oceans In Space is a journey of exploration that seeks out places where conditions are favorable for life to exist. This original and thought-provoking presentation highlights the search for extrasolar planets and an understanding of the conditions necessary to form and sustain life. Inspired in part by the goals of NASA's Origins Program, the show travels back in time more than five billion years, to trace the origin and evolution of the solar system from a cloud of gas and dust. It then describes the formation of our planet's oceans, and speculates about the places where life could have begun nearly four billion years ago.

The show includes a live customized Digistar tour of the current evening sky and basic astronomy lessons.

  • Age Level:  General Audience (Grades 4 +).  Also covers standards for K-3rd.
  • Maximum participants per session: 210
  • Location: Planetarium Theater
  • Running time: 30 minutes (add 20-25 min. for Star Walk)
Teacher Resource Sheet [Download PDF]

Ring World

Ring World tells the story of humanity’s interest in Saturn from ancient times to the present. From Galileo's first look at “a planet with ears," to Cassini's discovery of the ring system, to the Voyager missions of the 1970s, our knowledge has steadily improved.

Ring World explains Cassini-Huygens’ convoluted path to Saturn highlighting major events and milestones in the mission timeline including Cassini's thrilling July 2004 Saturn orbit insertion, the successful descent and landing of the Huygens probe on Titan in January 2005, plus images from the first exploration of Saturn's icy moon Enceladus in February 2005.

The show includes a live customized Digistar tour of the current evening sky and basic astronomy lessons.

  • Age Level:  General Audience (Grades 6 +)
  • Maximum participants per session: 210
  • Location: Planetarium Theater
  • Running time: 40 minutes (add 20 min. for Star Walk)
Teacher Resource Sheet [Download PDF]

Season of Light

Light up the cold dark season with a warm and bright holiday show! Season of Light 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 the winter solstice — not only Christian and Jewish, but also Celtic, Nordic, Roman, Irish, Mexican and Hopi.

Naturally, we focus on astronomy in Season of Light and audiences learn a selection of Northern hemisphere winter constellations, and find out why we 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 are discussed in turn.

Season of Light is visually rich, culturally inclusive, musically satisfying and as soothing as a warm drink on a cold winter's night.

The show includes a live customized Digistar tour of the current evening sky and basic astronomy lessons.

  • Age Level:  General Audience (Grades 6 +)
  • Maximum participants per session: 210
  • Location: Planetarium TheaterRunning time: 40 minutes (add 20 min. for Star Walk)
Teacher Resource Sheet [Download PDF]

Sky Quest

Join our young woman astronomer-to-be on her personal quest to find a special place in the night sky, from her childhood adventures on Mars (via a cardboard rocket), to the discovery of her "birthday star" that inspired her to build a mountain observatory and further her lifelong fascination with the heavens. She shares her telescope views of the Moon, Mars, Jupiter and Saturn with us; points out stars and constellations; and encourages everyone to make the time to look up, even if stargazing in urban areas with light pollution. Sky Quest is an entertaining and educational exploration of the night sky that appeals to family members of all ages.

The show includes a live customized Digistar tour of the current evening sky and basic astronomy lessons.

  • Age Level:  General Audience (Grades 4 +)
  • Maximum participants per session: 210
  • Location: Planetarium Theater
  • Running time: 40 minutes (add 20 min. for Star Walk)
Teacher Resource Sheet [Download PDF]

Skywatchers of Africa

Since the beginning of time, the people of Africa have used their knowledge of the sky to meet their physical needs for survival, build their societies and shape their spiritual lives. Skywatchers of Africa is a fascinating exploration of Africa and the cultural uses of the sky that developed over thousands of years. The show highlights the diversity of African cultural astronomy and celebrates our shared human experience.

The show includes a live customized Digistar tour of the current evening sky and basic astronomy lessons.

  • Age Level:  General Audience (Grades 3 +)
  • Maximum participants per session: 210
  • Location: Planetarium Theater
  • Running time: 40 minutes (add 20 min. for Star Walk)
Teacher Resource Sheet [Download PDF]

Sponsored in part by the State of Florida, Department of State, Division of Cultural Affairs and the Florida Arts Council, and the National Endowment for the Arts.

Sunshine

Sunshine! is a lovable cartoon sun and he doesn’t care if children get loud or excited: in fact he wants them to look around, raise their hands, sing and play along with his tricks. During the fun and games, the stars of the night sky are revealed and Sunshine explores some simple colors and counting.

The show includes a live customized Digistar tour of the current evening sky and basic astronomy lessons.

  • Age Level:  Pre-K (5-years and under)
  • Live presenter combined with lip-sync animation
  • Maximum participants per session: 210
  • Location: Planetarium Theater
  • Running time: 20 minutes (add 10-15 min. for Star Walk)
Teacher Resource Sheet [Download PDF]

Sponsored in part by the State of Florida, Department of State, Division of Cultural Affairs and the Florida Arts Council, and the National Endowment for the Arts.

The Planets

The Planets is a visually stunning multimedia presentation that takes us on an exploration of our Solar System. Through the magic of planetarium technology we visit each planet in order from the Sun; beginning with Mercury and continuing through Neptune. Next, we encounter Pluto and its companions and press quickly on to the Kuiper Belt. On considering these frozen worlds, we speculate the existence of tens of thousands more icy dwarfs circling beyond Pluto in far-flung eccentric orbits.

Each show includes an introduction to the night sky. Sky tours highlight the seasonal constellations and interesting deep sky objects you can practice finding on your own, equipped only with a modest pair of binoculars.

The show is narrated by Kate Mulgrew, best known for her role as Captain Janeway on the television series Star Trek: Voyager.

  • Age Level:  General Audience (Grades 8-12)
  • Maximum participants per session: 210
  • Location: Planetarium Theater
  • Running time: 40 minutes (add 20 min. for Star Walk)
Teacher Resource Sheet [Download PDF]

WSKY: Radio Station of the Stars

Radio Station of the Stars is geared for Grades 4-7, but format and content has appeal for all ages. More than just a visit to the planetarium, WSKY is a dynamic experience hosted by a pair of fictional DJ's on a Top 40 radio station. The show includes original hit singles, call-in segments with Doctor Cosmos, interplanetary weather reports, solar system traffic reports, cosmic news and much more!  This dynamic presentation will be an instant hit with your students. It features high energy songs, animation, immersive Digistar effects and lasers.

The show includes a live customized Digistar tour of the current evening sky and basic astronomy lessons.

  • Age Level:  Grades 4th – 7th (K-12th standards covered also)
  • Maximum participants per session: 210
  • Location: Planetarium Theater
  • Running time: 35 minutes (add 20 min. for Star Walk)
Teacher Resource Sheet [Download PDF]

Show Info