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Roger B. Chaffee Planetarium

Visit the galaxy from the most comfortable seat in the house.

All of the shows feature the latest Digistar projection technology and immersive surround sound for an unbelievably rich and realistic experience. Recline, relax and experience the incredible forces of our universe.

Located within the Museum, the Roger B. Chaffee Planetarium is named after the Grand Rapids-born astronaut who lost his life in the 1967 Apollo 1 spacecraft fire.

With general admission planetarium shows are $4 each, Museum members are free and planetarium only tickets $5. Programs also available for school visits.

PLANETARIUM SHOWS

Planetarium shows run approximately 40 minutes. Click below to purchase planetarium only tickets for $5 per person. 

Big Bird and friends from Sesame Street, One World, One Sky Planetarium Show

One World, One Sky

Young audience members will be thrilled when they find themselves on Sesame Street with their famous friends, Big Bird and Elmo. The fun begins when Elmo’s friend, Hu Hu Zhu, visits from China and the three of them take the audience on an exciting journey of discovery to learn about the Sun, stars, and Big Dipper. Elmo and Hu Hu Zhu blast off on an imaginary trip to the Moon and when they return home to Earth everyone discovers that, no matter where we live, we all share the same sky.

Escher's Universe Planetarium show

Escher's Universe

Was M.C. Escher an artist, an astronomer, a mathematician, a traveler? This show takes us to the artist’s studio where Escher’s most iconic works are displayed, revealing his unique ability to join science and art. Explore how Escher’s travels impacted his work and marvel at how shapes, three-dimensional reconstructions, dual worlds, and unreal buildings reveal Escher’s continuous search for knowledge.

Space School Planetarium Show

Space School

From a habitat hidden deep underwater in Florida, to the world’s most amazing swimming pool, dive into the underwater world of outer space! Space School is the incredible story of how astronauts train underwater to live and work in space. From microgravity simulation at NASA’s Neutral Buoyancy Lab, to living under the sea at Aquarius Reef Base, astronauts spend a lot of time training underwater.

Fish swimming connected by digital web

  Habitat Earth  

NEW: Discover what it means to live in today’s connected world. Living networks connect and support life from colonies of tiny microbes and populations of massive whales to ever-expanding human societies.

Through stunning visualizations of the natural world, dive below the ocean’s surface to explore the dynamic relationships found in kelp forest ecosystems, travel beneath the forest floor to see how Earth’s tallest trees rely on tiny fungi to survive, and journey to new heights to witness the intricate intersection between human and ecological networks.

Planetarium show violent universe starry night

Under Frozen Skies

Join a live presenter to explore the wonders of the night sky. Come back each season to learn tips and tricks that will help you find planets and constellations from your own backyard. Fly to the far reaches of the solar system to get a closer look at planets, moons, and more. Experience the beauty and realism of the Chaffee Planetarium.

Dark Side: The Light Show

The Chaffee Planetarium is proud to present our first original production with the new generation of planetarium technology set to the music of Pink Floyd’s The Dark Side of the Moon. Experience Pink Floyd’s iconic album as never before in this one-of-a-kind light show, featuring stunning 4k visuals, brilliant LED sequences, and incredibly clear 5.1 surround sound.

Warning: This show contains some adult language and dizzying effects. It is not recommended for individuals prone to motion sickness, seizures, or light sensitivity. This is an entertainment show.

Telescope showing through opening in Veen Observatory

For information on other astronomy events in West Michigan visit the Grand Rapids Amateur Astronomical Association online.

Sponsored By:

WEGE Foundation logo

The Chaffee Planetarium upgrade was made possible through the generous support of the Wege Foundation. Additional support for the upgrade was received from the Cook Foundation, Michigan Council for Arts and Cultural Affairs, Frey Foundation, Baldwin Foundation, Rockford Construction Company, Inc., David DeBruyn, and American Seating. Thank you!​

Ambassador

Baldwin Foundation

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