Museum opening hours: 10am to 5pm Tuesday through Saturday | Noon to 5pm on Sunday | Closed on Monday | Closed on Thanksgiving Day, Christmas Day and New Year's Day

201 10th St. W

Bradenton, FL 34205

Planetarium Show Descriptions

Planetarium Show Descriptions

Planetarium Show Times & Descriptions

The Planetarium features presentations that make the most of our new, state-of-the-art Planetarium software and projection system. Please note that show times are subject to change without notice.

NEW Planetarium Show Celebrates One of Humanity’s Greatest Achievements

“15: Mission of Discovery” Showing July 20-August 15 Celebrates the 50th Anniversary of Apollo 15

When people think of the Apollo program, they tend to remember Apollo 11 (the first moon landing) and Apollo 13 (the “successful failure”), but Apollo 15 was an extremely important mission as well. Mission commander David Scott and lunar module pilot Jim Irwin became the first humans to drive a vehicle on another world — the 460-pound Lunar Roving Vehicle (LRV)! Scott and Irwin traveled 17.5 miles (compared to Apollo 14’s previous record of 2.1 miles) and Scott and Irwin set a record for most time on the lunar surface during extravehicular activities: 18 hours and 37 minutes.

Have you ever imagined what it was like to drive a rover on the Moon’s surface? You can experience one of humanity’s greatest achievements in The Planetarium during “15: Mission of Discovery,” a new show created exclusively by The Bishop to celebrate the 50th anniversary of the historic Apollo 15 moon landing!

All Show Times

11:15am — Dark Universe (25 minutes)

12:15pm — 15: Mission of Discovery (30 minutes)

1:30pm — Passport to the Universe (20 minutes)

2:45pm — 15: Mission of Discovery (30 minutes)

4pm — Journey to the Stars (30 minutes)

10:30am — Tour of the Solar System (15 minutes)

11:15am — Dark Universe (25 minutes)

12:15pm — 15: Mission of Discovery (30 minutes)

1:30pm — Passport to the Universe (20 minutes)

2:45pm — 15: Mission of Discovery (30 minutes)

4pm — Journey to the Stars (30 minutes)

12:30pm — 15: Mission of Discovery (15 minutes)

1:15pm — Passport to the Universe (20 minutes)

2:30pm — 15: Mission of Discovery (15 minutes)

3:15pm — Dark Universe (25 minutes)

4:15pm — Journey to the Stars (30 minutes)

Show Descriptions

Dark Universe

Featuring exquisite renderings of enigmatic cosmic phenomena, seminal scientific instruments, and spectacular scenes in deep space, Dark Universe celebrates the pivotal discoveries that have led us to greater knowledge of the structure and history of the universe and our place in it-and to new frontiers for exploration. Narrated by astrophysicist and prolific science communicator Neil deGrasse Tyson, this immersive program is a spectacular way to show off what our dome can do.  In stunningly detailed scenes based on authentic scientific data-including a NASA probe’s breathtaking plunge into Jupiter’s atmosphere and novel visualizations of unobservable dark matter – Dark Universe explores this new age of cosmic discovery and reveals the mysteries that have been brought to light so far. (25 minutes)

Dark Universe was developed by the American Museum of Natural History, New York (amnh.org) in collaboration with the California Academy of Sciences, San Francisco, and GOTO INC, Tokyo, Japan.

Tour of the Universe Live!

Join our astronomer for a live guided tour of the universe. You’ll see the distribution of stars, galaxies and cosmic material throughout the observable universe using The Planetarium’s state-of-the-art technology. Our digital dome presents a view of the cosmos previously only imagined by astronomers and scientists. Now, thanks to data collected by telescopes over the past 30 years, we can show you the structure visible in the distribution of galaxies throughout space and reveal what was previously unknown: the parts of the Universe that don’t interact with light, also known as Dark Matter.

For nearly 90 years, the theory of Dark Matter has been used to define unexplainable organizations of matter throughout space. Since 1930, the idea has gained momentum. Today, since Dark Matter is still undetectable, it remains a very ambitious topic that drives the imagination of physicists and astronomers around the world. In The Planetarium, you can see the compelling data that lead astronomers and physicists to conclude that 80% of the matter of the universe is invisible or “Dark.” (40 minutes)

Passport to the Universe

What is our place in the cosmos? In the American Museum of Natural History’s iconic space show Passport to the Universe, this question is answered as visitors travel through the observable universe to explore our “cosmic address.” In an unforgettable experience, cutting-edge science creates images of unprecedented realism and accuracy as viewers begin to understand the true enormity of the cosmos. A captivating explanation of fundamental cosmology, Passport to the Universe is always relevant, always educationally important, always illuminating.

Since its premiere at the Hayden Planetarium in New York, the American Museum of Natural History’s inaugural space show Passport to the Universe has been experienced by millions of people around the world—but not like this. Updated in December 2017, this renowned space show has been fully modernized for today’s audience featuring cutting-edge visualizations of the latest scientific data, including updated surface maps and new exploratory space missions. (20 minutes)

Narrated by Tom Hanks.

Passport to the Universe was developed by the American Museum of Natural History, New York (amnh.org) in collaboration with the National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA). Major support for new version provided by California Academy of Sciences, San Francisco.

This Month’s Skies Live!

Take a magical guided tour of our Night Skies in our all-digital Planetarium dome — the only one of its kind on Florida’s Gulf Coast — to show you what our skies look like tonight, tomorrow night or any night past or present over thousands of years. Constellations, asterisms and beautiful images of galaxies, nebulae and star clusters fill the sky revealing the nature of our larger cosmos. Our system uses Digistar 5 technology to show you not only the night sky but where in space you are within our Milky Way galaxy. Dwarf planets, the Kuiper Belt, the Oort cloud and more become not just places to point to in the sky, but places that you can fly to and see. We don’t just show you the rings of Saturn, we take you right into them! (40 minutes)

Journey to the Stars

This spectacular Space Show is narrated by Academy Award-winning actress Whoopi Goldberg, featuring extraordinary images from telescopes on the ground and in space and stunning, never-before-seen visualizations of physics-based simulations. The dazzling Journey to the Stars launches visitors through space and time to experience the life and death of the stars in our night sky, including our own nurturing Sun. Tour familiar stellar formations, explore new celestial mysteries, and discover the fascinating, unfolding story that connects us all to the stars. Those who come along for the journey may never see the night sky in the same way again.

Journey to the Stars is an engrossing, immersive theater experience created by the American Museum of Natural History’s Hayden Planetarium astrophysicists, scientific visualization, and media production experts with the cooperation of the National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA) and more than 40 leading scientists from the United States and abroad. (25 minutes)

Journey to the Stars was developed by the American Museum of Natural History, New York (amnh.org) in collaboration with the California Academy of Sciences, San Francisco; GOTO INC, Tokyo, Japan; Papalote Museo del Niño, Mexico City, Mexico and Smithsonian National Air and Space Museum, Washington, D.C.

Flight Through Our Solar System

Flight Through Our Solar System is a narrated tour that begins at the sun then travels through our solar system — including the asteroid belt — past Pluto and the other outer planets, until we arrive at the icy outer reaches of the Kuiper Belt and the Oort Cloud, located on the outer fringe of our solar system. (15 minutes)

Sea of Stars: Sail Through the Milky Way

Sea of Stars: Sail Through the Milky Way takes you on a journey to visit baby stars in a stellar nursery, see the nebulas left by dead stars, and explore the supermassive black hole at the heart of our Milky Way galaxy. Prepare to be star struck! (15 minutes)