Macalester observatory

Observatory Nights on hiatus

Observatory Nights are on hiatus through May 2024. During the spring 2024 semester, students in our Observational Astronomy course will be making heavy use of the facility collecting and analyzing data for research projects. We hope to resume Observatory Nights this summer.

About our Observatory Nights

On observing nights our 16-inch telescope will be open for viewing and education. Observatory Nights is an ongoing student-run event which allows the greater Macalester College community to take advantage of the college’s science-grade observatory.

Weather permitting, potential targets include the Moon, planets, globular clusters, star clusters, binary star systems, galaxies, and planetary nebulae. In the case of cloudy skies, poor visibility, or precipitation, we will not be able to open the dome for observing; however, if you would still like to see the facilities and chat about the universe, our astronomy students will be present to show the dome and answer questions. Hope to see you there!

Directions to Observatory

  1. To access the telescope, enter Olin Rice Hall using MacPass access.
  2. Take the stairs or service elevator on the SOUTHWEST side of the building up to the fourth floor.
  3. Enter the first room on the left — you will see a spiral staircase.
  4. Ascend the spiral staircase to the roof. The dome is only accessible by this staircase.

Contact Info

Brian Adams
Laboratory Supervisor and Observatory Manager
[email protected]