The Astronomy Guide:  Our Universe Unveiled
Horsehead Nebula
Image Credit: NASA/courtesy of
SPD-HUBBLE-STScI-200 1-12c
Andromeda Galaxy, M31
Image Credit: NASA/Swift/Stefan Immler (GSFC) and Erin Grand (UMCP)
SPD-HUBBLE-STScI-200 1-12c
Surface of Venus
Image credit: NASA/JPL





A planetarium is a theater utilized to display the night sky. Used primarily for educational purposes, these theaters are typically built using a domed ceiling. Projection systems display images of stars, planets, and other celestial objects onto this ceiling to create a realistic view of the night sky. Some projection systems even have the ability to simulate motion of the heavens.


Charles Z. Horwitz Planetarium

The Charles Z. Horwitz Planetarium is located at the Retzer Nature Center, in Waukesha, Wisconsin. The planetarium is equipped with a Spitz 512 star projector, along with several other projectors to create a dynamic visual experience.


In the month of December, the planetarium is offering shows on Thursday evenings, as well as Saturday afternoons. A new children's show has been added on Saturday mornings. Designed for ages 6 through 12, this showing features the "winter solstice". Special programs are also offered for school groups and scouting events. (Some shows also include observing the night sky, weather permitting).


For more information on the Charles Z. Horwitz Planetarium and current events, please visit



Manfred Olson Planetarium

The Manfred Olson Planetarium is located on the University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee campus. The planetarium utilizes a Spitz A3P optomechanical projector, as well as a series of other projectors to create an enjoyable learning experience. An observatory deck is also available, available for observing the night sky.

The planetarium offers a weekly showing on Friday evenings, as well as shows on select Wednesdays. Reservation only shows are also available, which provide a great interactive learning experience for school groups.

For more information on the Manfred Olson Planetarium and current events, please visit


Daniel M. Soref Planetarium

The Daniel M. Soref Planetarium is located in downtown Milwaukee, inside the Milwaukee Public Museum. With its new projection system, this planetarium is able to provide a very realistic astronomy experience.


The planetarium offers daily showings as well as events by special reservation only. Currently, the special showing is "Wisconsin Skies". This show is great for scouting troups. The first hour is spent viewing celestial objects inside the planetarium. The second hour involves viewing the night sky through the Planetarium's telescopes. Groups are encouraged to ask questions during the show.


For more information on the Daniel M. Soref Planetarium and current events, please visit



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