(BRANCHBURG, NJ) — The Raritan Valley Community College Planetarium in Branchburg has a full lineup in December, including children’s programs, holiday-themed shows, star shows, and laser concerts. The following shows have been scheduled:
Sunset Meditation, Friday, December 2 at 7:00pm – How do STEM workers, NASA professionals, athletes, and business executives cope with stress? Mindfulness. Meditation is a powerful tool for maintaining psychological health and resilience. Since the Planetarium offers a dark and quiet space for relaxation, it is the perfect place for meditation. Enjoy a guided meditation experience in the comfortable, reclined seats in the RVCC Planetarium. View an amazing sunset as you travel virtually from the Grand Canyon to the North Pole. Then, relax under a night sky filled with stars and glimpses of the Northern Lights. (Recommended for ages 10-adult)
Perfect Little Planet, Saturday, December 3 at 3:00pm – A family from another star system is seeking the perfect vacation spot. Fly over the surface of Pluto, our best-known dwarf planet; sail through the rings of Saturn; avoid Jupiter’s lightning storms; and walk on the surface of Mars. Which destination will the family choose? (Recommended for ages 6-12)
Laser Kids, Saturday, December 3 at 4:00pm – Sing along to an updated playlist while lasers dance on the dome overhead. Songs include “Old Town Road” by Lil Nas X and Billy Ray Cyrus, “Sweet Caroline” by Neil Diamond, “Levitating” by Dua Lipa, and “Can’t Stop this Feeling” by Justin Timberlake. (Recommended for ages 6-12)
The Sky Above (sensory friendly), Saturday, December 3 at 5:00pm – This sensory-friendly astronomy and music show, approximately 45 minutes in length, is specially designed for families with children on the Autism spectrum or those with developmental disabilities. Neurotypical children are welcome as well. The program, which is presented on a kindergarten level, is appropriate for audiences of all ages. During the show, the doors will remain open so children may freely leave and return if they choose. Lights will be left dim (instead of dark), and the audio will be lowered and kept at a consistent level. The show will include music, laser lights, stories, and information about the planets, the Moon, and constellations.
Astronomy Tonight, Saturday, December 3 at 7:00pm – Using the Planetarium’s DigitalSky digital theater, experience a guided tour of the night sky. Learn about some of the popular constellations visible from sunset to sunrise, as well as the stories behind them. Hear about how and where in the sky to find the brightest planets. Weather permitting, the 3M Observatory will be open after the show. (Recommended for ages 8-adult)
Pink Floyd’s The Wall laser concert, Saturday, December 3 at 8:00pm – Enjoy a laser concert featuring hits from Pink Floyd’s popular album, including “Another Brick in the Wall,” “Hey You,” and “Comfortably Numb.”
The Alien Who Stole Christmas, Saturdays, December 10 & 17 at 3:00pm – Discover the stars visible in the winter sky. Then, follow Santa on a trip through the solar system when a friendly alien kidnaps him. Kids on other planets also need presents! (Recommended for ages 6-10)
Winter Wonder Lights laser concert, Saturdays, December 10 & 17 at 4:00pm & 8:00pm – Listen to holiday hits such as “Wizards in Winter,” “Rockin’ Around the Christmas Tree,” and “Dominic the Donkey” while lasers dance on the dome overhead. (Recommended for ages 6-adult)
The Christmas Star, Saturdays, December 10 & 17 at 7:00pm – Over the years, many people have tried to explain the appearance of the Star of Bethlehem as described in the Bible. Was it an exploding star, a comet, or some other natural event in the sky? The program offers potential natural explanations for the Star of Bethlehem, as well as common, modern-day misconceptions. The show also includes a brief tour of the current night sky. (Recommended for ages 8-adult)
Planetarium tickets cost $10 for one show, $18 for two shows back-to-back on the same day. Reservations are recommended, but all ticket sales are done at the door on the day of the show. Late admission to Planetarium shows is not permitted. For reservations and information, call 908-231-8805. For additional information, visit www.raritanval.edu/planetarium.
The Planetarium will be closed December 23-January 2. Public shows will resume on Saturday, January 7.
Raritan Valley Community College (RVCC) is located at 118 Lamington Road in Branchburg, New Jersey.
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