Astronomy Week Will Return to Pasadena This Summer

Published : Tuesday, June 12, 2018 | 5:59 AM

Astronomy Week is again coming to Pasadena on July 14 to 22, presenting free and family-friendly space-themed events, robotics demonstrations, creative art displays, planetarium shows, and hand-on activities and stargazing near the Pasadena Convention Center.

Now called AstroFest, the 2018 edition coincides with the 42nd COSPAR (Committee on Space Research) Assembly, where scientists from around the world will gather for a week of networking events with space leaders, scientists, researchers and exhibitors, taking place also at the Pasadena Convention Center and the Hilton Hotel Pasadena.

AstroFest is being organized by 11 Pasadena-based scientific institutions and organizations that partnered in 2016 to celebrate Pasadena as the City of Astronomy. These institutions include Caltech, Carnegie Observatories, Giant Magellan Telescope, IPAC, NASA’s Jet Propulsion Laboratory, Kidspace Children’s Museum, Mt. Wilson Observatory, Pasadena City College, The Planetary Society, Thirty Meter Telescope and the ArtCenter/Williamson Gallery.

With AstroFest 2018, these world-renowned institutions are collaborating together to promote greater public awareness about Pasadena’s rich history in the field of astronomy.

A current schedule posted on the City of Astronomy website shows AstroFest will open Saturday, July 14, from 2 to 8 p.m. at the Pasadena Convention Center. Stargazing outside the Convention Center and at the Paseo Colorado begins at 8 p.m.

On Monday, July 16, the Pasadena Central Library will introduce its new Innovation Lab which opened on June 2. The Lab features 3D printers, digital sewing and embroidery machines, a laser cutter and a 3D carving machine. That day, Astronomy on Tap will open at Der Wolfskopf, an upscale German beer hall in the heart of Old Pasadena, from 7:30 to 9:30 p.m. Astronomy on Tap is on until Tuesday, July 17.

On Wednesday, July 18, MIT professor Sara Seager will give a public lecture on Mapping the Nearest Stars for Habitable Words, from 8 to 9:30 p.m. at the Pasadena Civic Auditorium.

On Thursday, July 19, AstroFest participants will be shuttled between the Convention Center and the ArtCenter College of Design Hillside campus, where the MOONS Exhibit opening reception will be held between 7 and 10 p.m. The exhibit formally opens Friday, July 20, through December 16.

On Friday, Caltech astronomers will lead a public lecture and stargazing from 8 to 9 p.m., at the institute’s Cahill Center for Astronomy and Astrophysics.

Saturday, July 21, will be Lego Contest Showcase Day at the Pasadena Central Library, from 2 to 4:15 p.m.

All week, the exhibit Radiant Beauty: Rare 19th Century Astronomical Prints will be open for viewing by AstroFest participants, from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. Wednesday through Monday, at the Huntington Library West Hall in San Marino.

For an updated schedule and a list of presentations and events, visit

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