Shows | Barton Community College

Planetarium Shows

Check out shows available through the Barton Planetarium! 

Fall Schedule

Check out the Barton Planetarium for themed presentations this fall! Shows will run from 7-8 p.m. (full-dome movie from 7-7:30 p.m., live presentation from 7:30-8 p.m.) and will vary in topics, including a tour of the night skies, hands-on activity, or a look outside at the actual skies. See below for the complete schedule.

Eclipse 2017

Sunday, August 20 - 4 p.m., 5 p.m., 7 p.m., 8 p.m.

Get ready for the Great American Eclipse. See how Solar and Lunar eclipses happen, hear the mythology surrounding eclipses, and learn everything you need to know to safely see the astronomical event of a lifetime! Check out the Eclipses and Phases of the Moon preview video for more information!

Special Eclipse Viewing

Monday, August 21 - 11 a.m. – 2 p.m.

The eclipse is coming! Soon, a solar will sweep across the United States. On Monday, August 21, the new moon will pass in front of the sun, temporarily blocking at least half of the sun’s surface everywhere in the continental US. In Barton County, the eclipse will start around 11:30 a.m., gradually increase to approximately 95% coverage by 1 p.m., then return to normal by about 2:30 p.m.

The Barton Planetarium will host an eclipse viewing party near the soccer fields just east of the Kirkman Center. Everyone is welcome to join us from 11 a.m. - 2 p.m. to experience this rare event. Whatever other plans you might have had for lunch that day have been eclipsed!

Evening Planetarium Shows

All shows are in the Barton Planetarium in the Science building.  The shows are on Mondays, starting at 7 p.m. and run 45-60 minutes. All shows are free and open to the public.

August 28 - The Cowboy Astronomer + bonus: Evening Stargazing

September 11 - The Smartphone Astronomer

A Barton Planetarium original. “The Smartphone Astronomer” help visitors unlock the power of smart phones and tablets to learn about astronomy.  This interactive evening demonstrates various apps for identifying stars, finding the International Space Station, and much more.

October 9 - Saturn: the Ring World + bonus: Great Planet Adventures

October 23 - Journey to a Billion Suns 

November 6 - Bio Doubleheader: Dinosaur Prophecy and Body Code

November 27 - Search for Life in the Universe + bonus: X-Planets

Sunday, December 10 - Christmas Show: Star of Bethlehem - 1 p.m., 2 p.m., 3 p.m.

Show Descriptions

See a listing of shows below available to watch when you rent the Barton Planetarium.

Back To The Moon For Good

Back to the Moon for GoodImmerse yourself in a race to the Moon 40 years after the historic Apollo landings.

Learn about the history of lunar exploration, and the Moon’s resources. Discover what humanity’s future on the Moon might hold. See how a competition among privately funded international teams is ushering in a new era of lunar exploration.

Narrated by Tim Allen, Back To The Moon For Good presents the Google Lunar XPRIZE, and the personal stories of competition and collaboration it inspires.

Time: 25 Minutes

Target Audience: 10 – Adult

DARK: The Movie

Dark: The MovieDARK is a full-dome movie that explains and explores the nature of dark matter, the missing 80% of the mass of the Universe.

The search for dark matter is the most pressing astrophysical problem of our time – the solution to which will help us understand why the Universe is as it is, where it came from, and how it has evolved over billions of years – the unimaginable depths of deep time, of which a human life is but a flickering instant. But in that instant, we can grasp its immensity and, through science, we can attempt to understand it.

Time: 20 Min

Target Audience: 14 – Adult

IBEX: Search for the Edge of the Solar System

IBEX: Search for the Edge of the Solar SystemJoin scientists who are investigating the boundary between our Solar System and the rest of our galaxy in IBEX: Search for the Edge of the Solar System.

Designed for visitors with an appreciation for the challenges of space science and a desire to learn more about science research, the show follows the creation of NASA’s Interstellar Boundary Explorer (IBEX). Audiences will get an in-depth look at the mission and how IBEX is collecting high-speed atoms to create a map of our Solar System’s boundary.

Narrated by two inquisitive teenagers, audiences will hear from the scientists and engineers that developed the IBEX mission and created the spacecraft, and get the latest updates on the mission’s discoveries.

Time: 27 Minutes

Target Audience: 10 – Adult

Two Small Pieces of Glass: The Amazing Telescope

Two Small Pieces of Glass: The Amazing TelescopeWhile attending a local star party, two teenage students learn how the telescope has helped us understand our place in space and how telescopes continue to expand our understanding of the Universe. Their conversation with a local astronomer enlightens them on the history of the telescope and the discoveries these wonderful tools have made. The students see how telescopes work and how the largest observatories in the world use these instruments to explore the mysteries of the universe.

While looking through the astronomer's telescope, the students, along with the planetarium audience, explore the Galilean Moons, Saturn's rings, and spiral structure of galaxies.

Time: 25 Minutes

Target Audience: 10 – Adult

Wilbear’s Adventure

Wilbear's AdventureWilbear is a young teddy bear who has always been fascinated by flight.  When his Grandpa comes to visit, Wilbear learns about the history of flight – especially his hero Wilbur Wright.  Along the way, Wilbear learns about mythology and sees a few winged constellations.  Finally, Wilbear visits an airport and gets to see all the different airplanes.

Time: 22 minutes

Target Audience: 3–8


Losing the Dark

Losing the DarkStarry skies are a vanishing treasure because light pollution is washing away our view of the cosmos. It not only threatens astronomy, it disrupts wildlife, and affects human health. The yellow glows over cities and towns — seen so clearly from space — are testament to the billions spent in wasted energy from lighting up the sky.

Losing the Dark is a “public service announcement” planetarium show. It introduces and illustrates some of the issues regarding light pollution, and suggests three simple actions people can take to help mitigate it.

Time:  7 minutes

Target Audience: 10 – Adult

Live Shows

Tonight’s Skies - Learn about the stars, constellations, and planets visible in the night sky. Our digital projection system lets us explore in whole new ways, viewing the skies from any place and any time. This interactive show changes depending on the season and any current special celestial events.  

Time:  Variable from 20–60 minutes.

Up, Up, And Away - Take a journey as we leave Barton Community College and fly ever higher, learning about the scales of the universe. We will leave the familiar landscapes of Kansas, fly away from earth, beyond the solar system, through the Milky Way and onward to distant galaxies.

Time:  Variable from 15–45 minutes.