Night Skies in the Joel N. Bloom Observatory

Man looking through telescope

Summer of the Moon Edition!

Tuesday, July 16, 2019 - 7:00pm to 10:00pm


The Franklin Institute
222 North 20th Street
Philadelphia, PA 19103
  • Adults
  • Families
  • Evening
  • Members
  • Public

Join us for an evening of out-of-this-world astronomy activities hosted by Franklin Institute Chief Astronomer Derrick Pitts.

Build your own experience from any combination of planetarium shows, a live science talk, a film screening, hands-on astronomy activities, and continuous telescopic observing all evening (weather permitting). The program is staffed with knowledgeable observers, and free star maps are provided.

Evening Events to mark the upcoming 50th Anniversary of Apollo 11:

Rocket Launch
Kick off your evening with a rocket launch demonstration in front of the museum.
20th Street | 7 pm

Star gazing and Skyline views
Staffed by knowledgeable observers, look through our Zeiss Refracting Telescope and additional rooftop setups continuously throughout the evening. (Weather permitting)
Joel L Bloom Observatory and 5th Floor Roof Deck | 7 – 10 pm

Science Talk: Flying to the Moon with Frank O’Brien 
A flight to the moon seems impossibly complex, especially given the technological state of the art in the 1960’s. In Flying to the Moon, NASA Solar System Ambassador Frank O’Brien takes us along on a journey to space. After the talk, stick around to see an actual Apollo Guidance Computer.
Franklin Theater | Talk at 7:15 pm (Approx. 30 minutes) 

The Apollo Chronicles Part 3: Failure and Fire
Man’s journey to the Moon is fraught with triumphs… and tragedies. In this episode, we take a deep dive into the most harrowing and heartbreaking loss suffered during the Apollo program, then witness the incredible power of the human spirit as NASA’s men and women rally to send Apollo 8 on a breathtaking voyage into lunar orbit. *Each episode is stand-alone. Even if you miss one evening, the screenings will be fun and inspiring!*
Franklin Theater | Screenings at 8pm & 9pm (Run Time: 45 minutes)

Walking Tour of the Moon
Using OpenSpace data visualization software, get an up-close look at the moon; including where Neil Armstrong took his historic steps. Chief Astronomer Derrick Pitts leads us on this tour for this very special presentation where you get to walk in the footsteps of our men on the moon…without ever leaving the ground.
Fels Planetarium | Shows at 8 & 9:30 pm (Approx. 30 minutes)

The Sky Tonight
From sunset to sunrise to constellations and planets, take a fun tour of what’s currently in your sky.
Fels Planetarium | 8:45 pm (Approx. 30 minutes)


Learn more about Summer of the Moon

Buy Member Tickets         Buy Tickets

Stay tuned for more details. Each month features different activities, talks, and shows!

Ticket Prices:
$10 for Individuals
$5 for Members