Kalamazoo Valley Museum to Participate in Statewide Astronomy Night

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The Kalamazoo Valley Museum will participate in Statewide Astronomy Night (SWAN) on April 20 from 5-8 p.m.

Nicolle Zellner

Dr. Nicolle Zellner, Professor of Astronomy at Albion College, will present ANSMET: Space Exploration Way Down Under in the Stryker Theater.

Kalamazoo Valley Museum to Participate in Statewide Astronomy Night

The Kalamazoo Valley Museum, 230 N. Rose Street, Kalamazoo, MI, will participate in Statewide Astronomy Night (SWAN) on April 20 from 5-8 p.m. A number of astronomy-related activities for all ages will be presented free of charge. SWAN is coordinated by Michigan State University’s annual Science Festival.

Planetarium staff will share their knowledge through interactive demonstrations and discussions.

Participants will learn about telescopes, make planispheres and moon dials, and see demonstrations on how to view the sun safely. Astronomy-themed refreshments will be served.

At 5:15 p.m. in the planetarium, there will be a showing of IBEX: Search for the Edge of the Solar System. The presentation examines the Interstellar Boundary Explorer and its use to map the furthest reaches of our solar system. At 6 p.m., guests can listen to a live star talk in the planetarium, which will focus on the springtime sky and its constellations here in southwest Michigan.

At 7 p.m., Dr. Nicolle Zellner, Professor of Astronomy at Albion College, will present ANSMET: Space Exploration Way Down Under in the Stryker Theater. During the 2006-2007 field season, Dr. Nicolle Zellner was a member of the ANSMET (Antarctic Search for Meteorites) team that searched for rocks from space on the ice fields of Antarctica. During her two months there, she and her team collected over 800 meteorites that provide clues to the early days of our solar system.

Her Ph.D. is from Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute (2001), where she received the school's first Multidisciplinary PhD. Her undergraduate degree, with majors in Physics and Astronomy and a certification in Environmental Studies, is from the University of Wisconsin-Madison. She was an AAUW American Fellow, as well as a two-time Zonta Amelia Earhart Fellow. Her research has been supported by the American Astronomical Society and is currently supported by NASA and the National Science Foundation.

Dr. Zellner will discuss her formative years growing up in the Midwest, her path of becoming a scientist, and some of her other research interests and unique experiences.

Venues around the state of Michigan will open their doors to help people see and connect with the beauty and science that lies overhead. Events and other sites participating in Michigan State’s Science Festival and Statewide Astronomy Night can be found at http://sciencefestival.msu.edu/

The Kalamazoo Valley Museum is operated by Kalamazoo Valley Community College and is governed by its Board of Trustees.

Media Contact
Bill McElhone
Kalamazoo Valley Museum Director
269-373-7990, wgouldmcelh(at)kvcc(dot)edu

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