Wednesday, July 2, 2014

A long time ago in a planetarium far, far away....

"Orion" at the Lenape Valley Planetarium
I just finished editing a Classroom Close-up story for next season about the planetarium at Lenape Valley Regional High School. It's one of six operating planetariums found in public schools around New Jersey. It's definitely a valuable asset for the students studying astronomy and for the wider community that uses the facility for elementary school field trips and other activities.

When I first got the assignment for this story, I realized I hadn't been in a planetarium in more than twenty years. In fact, the last time I was in a planetarium was 1990 and I was also working on a story. I was a college freshman on my first assignment for the Insider, a feature news magazine published at my alma mater, Bowling Green State University (For the record, I was a bit of a dabbler in college, so this was the only article I ever wrote for the Insider).

I mentioned my bit of personal history to the director of the Lenape Valley Planetarium, John Scala, and he asked me if I'd interviewed Dale Smith, director of the BGSU Planetarium,  for the article. I couldn't remember at the time, but lo and behold, it was Dr. Smith. Apparently, planetarium directors is a pretty tight community.

Here's the Insider article, complete with a vintage ad for Howard's Club H.