Our launch party!
Come join us on Friday and Saturday, April 29-30
in celebration of our new facility.

With special guests Drs. Michelle and Shane Larson

Our special guests for this lunch party will be Drs. Michelle and Shane Larson. Dr. Michelle Larson is the CEO and President of the Adler Planetarium in Chicago, the western hemisphere's oldest planetarium that hosts a half-million visitors every year! Before joining the Adler in 2013 Dr. Michelle Larson held positions in science education and administration at Utah State University, the Pennsylvania State University, the Montana Space Grant Consortium, the California Institute of Technology (CalTech) and the University of California-Berkeley. She earned a PhD in Physics from Montana State University where she studied neutron stars and realized her passion for sharing science with the public. 

Dr. Shane Larson is a research associate professor of physics at Northwestern University, where he is a member of CIERA (Center for Interdisciplinary Exploration and Research in Astrophysics). He is also an astronomer at the Adler Planetarium. He works in the field of gravitational wave astrophysics, specializing in studies of compact stars, binaries, and the galaxy. He works in gravitational wave astronomy with both the ground-based LIGO project, and future space-based detectors for NASA. He was formerly a tenured associate professor of physics at Utah State University.

Dr. Shane Larson will give a talk on Friday, April 29 at 4pm on gravitational waves titled "From Black Holes to LIGO: The Dawn of Gravitational-wave Astronomy." On Saturday, April 30 at 12:30pm Dr. Michelle Larson will give a talk on science education outreach titled "Science has a story to tell." Both talks are open to the public and will be held in room M73 in the new Center for the Sciences building on Main Street.

Summary of activities:

  • Friday at 3:15 Meet-'n-Greet with the Larsons outside of room M73.
  • Friday at 4:00 "Gravitational Wave" talk by Dr. Shane Larson, room M73.
  • Friday at 8:45pm there will be a public planetarium show "Secret Lives of Stars"
  • Saturday at 10:00am there will be a special kids' planetarium show "One World, One Sky: Big Bird's Adventure"
  • Saturday at 11:00am there will be kids activities (room M65) coordinated by Macaroni Kid NRV
  • Saturday at 12:00 Meet-'n-Greet with the Larsons outside of room M73.
  • Saturday at 12:30 "Science has a story to tell" talk from Dr. Michelle Larson, room M73.
  • Saturday at 2:00 there will be a public planetarium show "Seven Wonders"
  • Saturday at 3:00 there will be a public planetarium show "Secret Lives of Stars"
  • Saturday at 4:00 there will be a public planetarium show "Seven Wonders"

For more information please contact Dr. Rhett Herman, rherman@radford.edu


The original Radford University Planetarium ended its 16-year run of public shows on Saturday, December 19, 2015 with the 10:30am show. It had been a great run with over 40,000 cumulative visitors since the first public show in October of 1999. We look forward to the next 16 years of service in our mission of science education. 

Schedule a Group Visit

There will be a limited number of special showings that may be arranged for groups (minimum size of 20) in late may and June this summer. If you have a group that would like to visit the planetarium, please contact Dr. Rhett Herman (rherman@radford.edu email is preferred or 540-831-5441).

Upcoming Shows

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