Director’s note: Starting 2010 with new films, more fun

Seth Jarvis

2143_SPACEPIRATES_8.5x11.inddI realize that we’re several months away from International Talk like a Pirate Day (September 19th), but we’re not going to let a calendrical triviality dampen our enthusiasm for our latest dome theatre production, Attack of the Space Pirates.

This new show will be a rip-roaring space adventure – the planetarium’s first original astronomy education production incorporating good guys vs. bad guys, blazing lasers and a desperate pursuit among the stars in a do-or-die race to save the galaxy.

We’ve stopped short of sporting eye patches and parrots on our shoulders as we open this show, but we want you to know that high adventure awaits in our Hansen Dome Theatre.

Across the hall in the ATK IMAX Theatre, we’ll be featuring a different kind of space adventure with the opening of Hubble 3D.  Last May NASA astronauts made a visit to the Hubble Space Telescope to give it a major, and final, series of repairs and upgrades.  The Hubble Space Telescope has been accurately described as the single most productive scientific instrument in history.  The list of profound astronomical discoveries made using Hubble is too long to mention in this newsletter.  Trust me, the discoveries made using Hubble are hugely significant to astronomy.  The modifications made to the telescope last year have given this magnificent instrument an additional decade of useful life while at the same time making it roughly ten times more powerful than the Hubble Telescope was when it was first launched twenty years ago.  A 3D IMAX camera was aboard the Space Shuttle Atlantis and captured astonishing high-resolution 3D footage of the work performed on the telescope as astronauts ingeniously employed technology and muscle-power to give Hubble a fresh lease on life.  Do NOT miss this movie!

- Seth

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