The book of Matthew describes a “star that rose in the East” as leading “magi” to the birthplace of Jesus. Could this star, depicted in artwork for nearly two thousand years, have been an astronomical event? A supernova? A comet? A planetary conjunction with great significance? Come speculate and learn about the heavens and wonder as astronomer Chip Kobulnicky presents celestial possibilities that may underlie this storied event.
The University of Wyoming Harry C. Vaughan Planetarium is located in the basement of the Physical Science building. Enter the Physical Science building at the SW entrance, go down the stairs and follow the signs pointing to the planetarium.
Physical Science is located at D 10 in the University of Wyoming map
We open up our STAR Rooftop Observatory every first and third Friday of the month from 8:00pm to 9:30pm. Feel free to join us anytime, but dress warm as evenings are chilly! The tours will be very informal and you may stay for as long as you like or leave at any time. Tours are FREE.
The University of Wyoming’s STAR Observatory is located on the roof of the Physical Science building. Enter the Physical Science building at the SW entrance, go UP the stairs all the way to the roof.
Tickets can be purchased in advance OR at the door.
To purchase tickets online with a credit card in advance: Click here to purchase tickets online. Please note that all online tickets are $4, but kids under 5 are still free. Tickets can be picked up at the door 15 minutes prior to the show.
To purchase tickets in person in advance: Tickets can be purchased at the Physics Department main office in Physical Science room 204 Monday through Thursday from 8-5 and Friday from 8 -4 OR Online. We can only accept cash or checks in person.
Finally, tickets can be purchased at theater 20 minutes before the show (cash or check only); $3 for student and $4 for non-students. Tickets for children under 5 are free. Doors open 20 minutes before show. There is no admittance once the show starts. Doors open 20 minutes before show. There is no admittance once the show starts.
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The planetarium has been renamed in honor of the Windy Ridge Foundation’s owner, who was a professor of meteorology in the Iowa State Department of Geological and Atmospheric Sciences. Vaughn taught courses in meteorology, earth sciences and agronomy there. Before teaching at Iowa State, he worked at the Ames Laboratory.
Upon retirement, Vaughn moved to Laramie, where he befriended a number of faculty members in UW’s Department of Atmospheric Science. He devoted his time to his love of astronomy and built a personal observatory in his backyard to make his own astronomical observations and also mentored UW students.