Public Observing Nights, school tours and Open House events continue to be very popular. As a result, we have recently passed the 4100 visitor mark!
Public Observing sessions are not held during the winter months.
Check out the Planet Passport program for young people interested in finding the planets in the sky (morning AND evening). They are available through the observatory.
Please check back in April for the Spring schedule.
If you would like to be put on our "First Notice" Observatory email list, contact us with your email address. You'll be the first to know about observing opportunities with the telescope an any special activities we are planning.
Several important points:
Dress for being outside! The observatory dome is not heated (or cooled) and is open to the outside, so you should dress appropriately. (Note that even in the summer, nights can get chilly.)
Space in the dome is limited. No more than 18 people can be accommodated for observing at a time, so if there is a crowd we will bring you to the dome in groups - be sure to meet in AS 2026 at the time scheduled for the start of the observing session.
Parents are encouraged to bring children, but unaccompanied children will not be admitted. (Note that evening observing sessions are not suitable for children under 7; please do not bring them.)
If it is a clear evening, inside the dome will be dark, to enable viewing at the telescope. Please be considerate of others in the group: do not take flash photos or operate your cell phone. There is usually an opportunity to take photos of the telescope after the tour.
The telescope cannot see through clouds, so on overcast nights there will be no observing.
You will not see anything like a Hubble image through the Grenfell telescope. Two important reasons are that the Hubble telescope has 16 times more light-collecting area and that Hubble is located above the light-dimming and distorting atmosphere, but mainly because your eyes cannot store up light the way the Hubble cameras can. Most of the incredible colour astronomical pictures that you see on TV and in magazines come from telescope cameras that store the incoming light for tens of minutes to hours. Then someone adds together multiple images in software and processes the result for maximum effect. However, when you look through the eyepiece of the Grenfell telescope your eyes will see the VERY LIGHT that has traveled from the planets or stars or galaxies - it has not been processed! Check out our own telescope camera images in the Image Gallery.