Merrillville Community Planetarium
Bringing the Universe to the Merrillville Schools and Northwest Indiana

MCP News

STS-114 Rescheduled for launch

It is official. The countdown clock for NASA's Return to Flight is rolling again, after over a week of downtime. Discovery was given a green light for a potential launch on Tuesday for the Return to Flight STS-114 mission.

Return to Flight: STS-114 Delayed

After a low-level fuel sensor failed and cancelled the launch this past Wednesday, NASA officials are remaining optimistic that a launch will still happen in July. If they do not launch before July 31st, they will not be able to launch until September of this year, at the earliest.

Merrillville to Host Planetarium Conference in Fall 2006

The Merrillville Community School Corporation and the Merrillville Community Planetarium have been selected to host the 2006 Conference of the Great Lakes Planetarium Association. The conference will be held over four days in late October. More than 100 planetarium people from the midwest are expected to attend the annual conference.

MCP Website Receives an Upgrade

The Merrillville Community Planetarium introduced its new website as of January 1st. The new website provides information on all of the shows MCP offers, as well as easier navigation and a more pleasant appearance. Planning for the new website began about four months ago and was executed by two former Student Assistants, Tom Dobes and Steve Sumichrast.

Total Lunar Eclipse of October 27, 2004

Weather permitting, observers in Northwest Indiana will be able to observe a total lunar eclipse on the evening of Wednesday, October 27. This is the last total eclipse of the moon until March 3, 2007.

Five Planets Visible After Sunset

All five planets that can be seen with the naked eye are visible during the early evening over the next two weeks. Observers should look on clear evenings just as the sky becomes dark following sunset.

A Close Encounter With Mars This Summer

Mars is going to appear bigger and brighter in our night sky this summer. In fact, on August 27, 2003, Mars will make its closest approach to Earth in quite a while. From now through early fall is a good time to observe Mars -- with a telescope, binoculars, or your eyes!

Total Lunar Eclipse of May 15, 2003

Weather permitting, observers in Northwest Indiana will be able to observe a total lunar eclipse on the evening of Thursday, May 15. This is the first of two lunar eclipses visible from Northwest Indiana in 2003.

Record Year for Planetarium

The Merrillville Community Planetarium presented 681 shows during the 2001-02 school year, exceeding the previous record of 592 shows during 1999-2000.

Four Planets Visible at Once in Evening Sky

Four bright planets are visible just after sunset through April and May. Venus, Mars, Saturn, and Jupiter are in a line rising up from the western horizon into high in the southwestern sky. Later this month, Mercury will join the other planets.

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