Astronomy Nights

Mesa Community College invites the public to explore the amazing Universe in our state-of-the-art Planetarium located on the Southern & Dobson Campus!

MCC Astronomy Nights are held on the first Friday of the month during February, March, April, & May and September, October, November, & December.

MCC Astronomy Nights include FREE planetarium shows, telescope viewing, information tables, hands-on activities, and more! Planetarium shows occur rain or shine, but telescope viewing of the night sky is only offered when the sky is clear.

Planetarium shows most often run from 6:00-10:00 PM, with shows starting every 30 minutes. (A few shows last more than 30 minutes. In those cases, our planetarium shows run on a 45-minutes schedule.)

Tickets for the planetarium shows are FREE to guests beginning at 5:30pm on Astronomy Nights or through online reservations (see below). Free tickets are available on a first-come, first-served basis at the ticket table at the planetarium entrance on Astronomy Nights beginning at 5:30 PM.

Tickets to planetarium shows on Astronomy Nights may be reserved, for $3 each, through the "Reserve Tickets" link in the calendar below. Or you can visit the Mesa Community College Planetarium page at PurplePass tickets.

Fall 2019 Astronomy Night Schedule

Astronomy Night for this fall will be held on September 6, October 4, November 1, and December 6. Show titles to be determined.

New!! VisionSphere by Nouveau Papillon

Prepare to embark on a dynamic journey of striking visualizations accompanied by live, New Age instrumental music from Nouveau Papillon.
VisionSphere’s portals will transport you through eleven immersive voyages: you’ll witness angels gliding through the heavens, experience a panoramic exploration of deep caves, gaze upon fractal art and steampunk images, then enter the mystical realm of the wolf and other wildlife and nature indigenous to Arizona. As each experience concludes, a porthole will appear to guide you to the next destination; as a new song begins, the visuals align with the spirit of the music being performed.
This innovative experience is presented by international recording artists, Nouveau Papillon, whose live performance in the planetarium will include music from their current and upcoming albums. Mark Bensette Aux Bois on electric harp and 6 & 12-string acoustic/electric guitars and Hildi Thelen on Native American-style flutes create a unique presentation as the music is synchronized with the visual images on the dome. Also adding to the ambiance, the perimeter of the dome has changing hues in accord with each selection.
Future concert dates for the Fall 2019 semester to be determined.

MCC Planetarium is now Digistar 6!

The MCC Planetarium underwent major renovations January 2018. The upgrade includes a new 4K projection system, new graphics computers, and new planetarium software. Our new view of the Universe is gorgeous!

Other Information:

The line for seating forms approximately 15 minutes before show time. There is no late seating for planetarium shows. Please arrive at least 15 minutes ahead of show time.

During Astronomy Nights, we also offer telescope viewing of the Moon, planets, and other celestial sights. Unlike the planetarium shows, telescope viewing will only occur if the skies are clear.

The planetarium is wheelchair accessible.

Astronomy Nights are held at the MCC Planetarium on the south side of the Physical Science Building (PS 15). This building is just east of Dobson Road, on Planetarium Way north of the Dobson Road-US 60 interchange and one light south of Southern Avenue. Please see the map for our location on MCC's Southern & Dobson campus.

The Planetarium is labeled with "PLANETARIUM" in large black letters which are visible from Dobson Road and Planetarium Way.

Free parking is available in the lots south of the Physical Science Building. Please avoid parking in the spaces marked "EMPLOYEES" before 6:00 PM.