Chemeketa's Planetarium hosts astronomy presentations during the fall, winter and spring terms, student presentations and the Salem Astronomy Club. The Planetarium is located at in Building 2, Room 171, at the Chemeketa Salem campus, 4000 Lancaster Drive NE.
The Chemeketa Community College Planetarium opened in the fall of 1977 and has offered astronomy presentations during the fall, winter, and spring academic terms ever since. Currently, public shows are scheduled most Friday evenings at 7:30 and last about an hour. The theater seats 60 people under a 35-foot dome. A special "star" projector is mounted in the center of the room which projects realistic images of the stars, planets, sun, and moon onto the ceiling for visitors to study and enjoy. During the academic year, 4-5 different shows are scheduled that address topics which cover the solar system, our galaxy of stars, and the universe of galaxies.
Current Show Information
12 Signs of the Zodiac
Show dates: Oct. 3, 10, 17 & 24; Nov. 7, 14 & 21
Of the 88 constellations in the night sky, there are 12 of them that are known by name to most people as the constellations of the Zodiac. Throughout the year, as our planet circles the sun, the sun appears to move through these constellations. Each constellation carries its own mythological stories. In our show, we will explore the ancient stories of heroes, gods and monsters as well as the astronomical highlights to be found with telescopes, binoculars and the unaided eye.
Recorded information about our current show is available by calling the Planetarium at 503.399.5200.
Children and Chemeketa students: $4
The college planetarium offers a variety of student shows during the academic year. Call or contact us for more information.
The Salem astronomy club, known as Night Sky 45, meets the first Wednesday of every month (except December) in the Chemeketa Planetarium at 7 pm. Meetings are free and open to the public. Guest speakers are often scheduled to present various topics on amateur astronomy. During fair weather, monthly star parties are planned for locations just outside the Salem area. Club members can be contacted at: http://www.nightsky45.com or by e-mail