Haile Planetarium

Projector Broken Permanently, Planetarium Temporarily Closed

November 13, 2019
Our planetarium projector has finally broken permanently. It's been on its last leg for a couple years, and this past year the last leg was standing on a banana peel on the top of a cliff. I really didn't expect it to last as long as it did. Our maintenance contract has been up since January. I thought we could get through the spring semester, and was hoping for the summer. It lasted beyond that and gave us almost another semester. But finally, after 12 years, it is broken beyond repair. And without a projector, we have to close our doors. But it is not a permanent close. We will reopen when we have enough money to buy a new system. We are exploring many channels to find this money. One of these channels is this page. I appreciate all the donations that you have given, and seek more. Please share this project with friends who you think would be interested in donating to open the planetarium again, and consider donating again, if you are able. In a future post, I will share some of the awesome capabilities of the new system we will be upgrading to. Thank you for your support!

Thank you!

October 19, 2018

Thanks to your support, we have exceeded our initial fundraising goal!  And donations are still coming in.  This is the start we needed to begin our upgrade journey.  We could not have done this without you. 


Due to this overwhelming public support, we have decided to reopen our page for donations indefinitely so you will still be able to support the Planetarium in the future. 


A few of you have asked how you can do more to help.  Our need is extraordinary.  We have some equipment upgrades that are unavoidable.  Our projector is on its last leg, and when it dies the planetarium will have to close until we raise enough to replace it.


It’s a simple equation: with it we continue, without it we stop.


But not only do we want to continue; we want to improve! The wishlist for continued and improved operations includes:


-New projector, along with the computers and software to run it: $365,000

-Upgraded sound system to replace an ancient audio controller: $18,525

-A portable planetarium, which will allow us to reach even more in the community: $30,100


We know not all of this can be covered by the public, so we are working to find grants and larger donors as well.  But your continued support is helping us to cover the gap.  Thank you again! 


If you or your company would have any interest in sponsoring the Planetarium at a larger level, please contact Jodi Zerbe at zerbej1@nku.edu

Planetarium Field Trips

October 02, 2018

We are at 88% of our way to our $3000 goal! Thank you for your support.  


“Our Haile Planetarium show and discussion was the kind of thought-provoking educational experience that works so well to expand the minds and creativity of our children.”  -Local teacher


“The planetarium presentations helped to reinforce some of the lessons learned in science classes here in the school.” – Teacher, Newport Middle School


In the past 5-6 years, many schools and community organizations have cut back on the number of field trips taken, due to tight budgets. However, the Haile Planetarium in partnership with Norse Explore has seen growth in the number of students and schools visits during this same time frame. Our school attendance grew from 8,000 students in 2013-14 to over 14,300 in the year 2017-2018. 


Because the Haile Planetarium is a free program, schools are able to visit without having to tap too deep into funds or having to ask families to foot the bill for their field trips.  It is a vital resource and educational tool to the schools and community organizations in this region. With your donations, you are allowing thousands of school children to explore the universe and open their eyes to the vast array of positive options they have in their futures.  Thank you for your



Want to help even more?  Share our project with your friends on social media!  Impact.nku.edu/planetarium 

Kids love the Planetarium!

September 24, 2018

Wow! We are only 21% away from our goal of $3,000! Thanks again for supporting the Haile Planetarium in our quest for an upgrade.

Did you know that the planetarium serves budding scientists of all ages?

One of our most popular public shows this year was “One World, One Sky: Big Bird’s Adventure,” featuring a cast of your favorite Sesame Street characters. It is quite an interactive show with singing, counting, and learning new languages in addition to learning about our moon and constellations. Take a look at a few clips from a public viewing of this show. You can tell how excited the kids are to be at the planetarium!

Want to help us even more? Tell your friends and share our project via email or social media! Impact.nku.edu/planetarium

Record Planetarium Attendance!

September 18, 2018

Thank you again for donating to the Haile Planetarium! Because of generous supporters like you, we have raised $2,100 in a little over 18 days! Over the past 8 years, the Haile Planetarium has seen significant growth, with July 2017-June 2018 being the best year for attendance yet.


To accommodate this explosion in attendance, we added more Friday night public shows and advertised these shows via a single Facebook event.  Without us running ads, our Facebook event went viral within days!


This incredible growth simply goes to show how valued astronomy education is within the Northern Kentucky region.  Your donation will help us ensure this continues for years to come! 


Want to help us even more?  Tell your friends and share our project via email or social media!  Impact.nku.edu/planetarium