The second Sunday in March: Let's celebrate planetariums around the world!
The International Day of Planetaria (IDP) was born
in Italy in 1995. Conceived by the Associazione Amici dei Planetari, it became truly an international day in 1995, when other planetariums in Europe joined in the celebration. Today it is celebrated in the United States and Australia as well, and hopes are
that it will continue to grow and encompass the globe. Many locations use this day as a kick off event or the culminating day of a week of special programming and activities for the public.
The goal of IDP is to
involve the international planetarium community in a collaboration that promotes knowledge of planetariums to the public.
Originally scheduled for the Sunday before the spring equinox, later the date was set as
the second Sunday in March to allow planetariums to more easily schedule in advance.
Planetariums are Important
are planetariums important? In today’s light-polluted world, many people have lost touch with the stars. Only a few can be seen over large cities, and even in some rural areas light encroachment hides the stars of the Milky Way. Planetariums were
developed to “capture the stars” and bring them to Earth so that everyone could enjoy and learn about them.
The goal of IDP is to increase that number by informing as many people as possible that planetariums exist and that learning about the stars, space exploration, and astronomy is an enjoyable life-long activity.
Specific Goals of the International Day of Planetaria:
to inform the public about planetariums: what they are and why they exist;
to educate the public about the problem of light pollution;
to promote international exchanges and collaborations between planetariums of different countries;
highlight the important work of the International Planetarium Society.