Rowan Planetarium opens 2012 star show

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Edelman Planetarium at Rowan University, Glassboro, will open the planetarium star show “2012 … And Beyond!” on Sunday, Sept. 30, at 3 p.m. This public show will play every Sunday through Nov. 18.

Edelman Planetarium at Rowan University, Glassboro, will open the planetarium star show “2012 … And Beyond!” on Sunday, Sept. 30, at 3 p.m. This public show will play every Sunday through Nov. 18.

Everyone has heard the pronouncements that Dec. 21, 2012, marks the end of the Mayan calendar, and perhaps even the end of the world. Some of these tales have taken on a cosmic flavor. There are claims that a giant planet will impact the Earth or gravity waves from the center of our galaxy will suck the Earth down into a black hole or the entire Earth will flip upside-down, causing worldwide destruction.

In “2012,” the versatile SciDome digital projection system will portray the sky and outer space on the day in question. It will show what’s really going to happen in space this year and the true meaning of those cosmic events. The show also will go past Dec. 21 and envision some exciting things that will take place in the future.

As a bonus, visitors also can watch a free, optional 30-minute full-dome movie, “Tales of the Maya Skies” at 4 p.m. A native of the Mayan culture will discuss the astronomy of her distant ancestors: how the Maya viewed the passage of the seasons, how they predicted the positions of bright planets and why they think 2012 is really a beginning, not an end. Artistic digital animations will help the audience visualize how these accomplished people viewed the cosmos. This movie was produced by the Chabot Planetarium in Oakland, Calif.

“Maya Skies” will be performed at 4 p.m. every Sunday through Nov. 18, following “2012” at 3 p.m. Visitors can attend either or both shows. For “2012,” an admission fee will be charged: $5 for adults, $3 for children 12 and under, $3 for seniors older than 60 and $3 for Rowan students with ID. Planetarium shows are generally watchable by children six years of age and older.

The planetarium is located in Science Hall on the main Rowan campus. More information is available at www.rowan.edu/planetarium/. The planetarium and its programming are made possible by generous support from Jean and Ric Edelman.

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