November 27, 2012

Sara Lynn McCall, Graduate Assistant

VSU Planetarium Presents The Star of Bethlehem

VALDOSTA – The Valdosta State University Planetarium will present The Star of Bethlehem at 7, 8 and 9 p.m. on Friday, Nov. 30, in Nevins Hall 3004. This annual holiday show has been offered since 1983 and has become a tradition of Valdosta’s holiday season.

In The Star of Bethlehem, the planetarium will be used to recreate the night sky as seen from Bethlehem at the time Jesus was born. The Star of Bethlehem was most likely a rare triple conjunction of the planets Jupiter and Saturn, which occurred in the year 7 B.C.

The planetarium program will include a recreation of that triple conjunction, which may have been the basis of the three treasures offered by Magi. The program will also show a rare massing of all the planets during the dawn of April 17 of the year 6 B.C. Such a grouping would have been astrologically auspicious for a divine birth and may have been the basis of Luke’s “multitude of the heavenly host.”

This planetarium program is suitable for viewers ages five and up and is free and open to the public. Seating is first come first serve and limited to 47 people. Reservations should be made at 6 p.m. on Nov. 30 at the table in front of the planetarium. The telescopes of the observatory will be available before and after each planetarium program if the skies are clear. The planetarium is located on the third floor Nevins Hall and is accessible by stairs or elevator at the southeast door of the building.

For more information, please contact the Department of Physics, Astronomy and Geosciences at 229-333-5752.