Written by Kelly Herbst, Astronomy Curator for the Virginia Living Museum. Updated every two weeks, more or less.

Wednesday, July 4, 2012

Happy Independence Day!

Hello everyone!  Just a quick post todqay, as it's a holiday, and I'm home with my family.

In a little while I'll be heading to the museum, as we'll be running our brand-new laser spectacular, Spirit of America, for the holiday tonight.  Come check it out!  But get your tickets soon - they are going fast!  Our 6pm show is already sold out!  Here are the details:

Spirit of America
6pm (SOLD OUT!), 7pm, 8pm & 9pm
TONIGHT! July 4th
$6 per person ($3 for museum members)

You can check out the playlist for the laser show online.  It's a great mix of patriotic and uniquely American music.  A fun show for adults and kids alike!  Plus no bugs, no parking problems, and it's indoors and air conditioned!

Also - if you purchase your tickets in advance, you get free laser 3D glasses when you come in!  So call the museum at (757) 595-1900 now and purchase your tickets by phone with a credit card.  We'll have them and your laser glasses waiting for you at the door.

An just in case you thought there was nothing particularly spacey about the Fourth of July holiday, allow me to offer these:

These are Hubble (left) and Spitzer (right) Space Telescope images of the North America nebula.  The visible light image (Hubble) shows how the nebula got its name.  Spitzer's image (in infrared) shows just how different things look when you see in different wavelengths of light.

This image is from the Hubble space telescope and looks remarkably like fireworks bursting in the night sky, doesn't it?  It's rather unromantic name is NGC 3603 and it's located in the constellation Carina.  I think the Fireworks Cluster would be a much better name, don't you?

So enjoy the fireworks tonight, either in the planetarium, or live, or on television, or even on the Hubble website.  Happy Fourth of July!

See you in two weeks...and until then...
Carpe noctem!

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