Grim celebrates Sesquicentennial

By Carly Gaba

On March 18, Phill Reed, KU’s Planetarium and Observatory Director, put on a show to celebrate the 150th anniversary.

Located in the Grim academic building, the show was titled “Sesquicentennial Show: 150 years of the sky over Kutztown University.”

Mary Neuenschwander, the assistant director of Alumni Relations, said a total of 68 people, both alumni and guests attended the show. The show was based off of events that occurred in space all throughout KU’s timeline. It began with an image of Bill Baton and Randy Schaeffer, the original science club, looking at a solar ellipse. The audience was then taken back to May 28, 1900 to view the same solar eclipse that the science club had gazed upon.

“It was fascinating how you can go back to a time where they looked at the eclipse,” said sophomore Jake Guzzi, an attendee and KU Foundation and Office of Alumni relations employee.

Grim, once called the “Space Age Science Building,” installed their first and original telescope in 1868, only two short years after KU was founded. It was one year later in 1867 that the planetarium was first used.

Neuenschwander said, “All of our events this year are sesquicentennial themed. The main goal is to bring back alumni by encouraging more family member events through a wide range of alumni interests.”

The show concluded with research regarding the recent study of binary stars. Currently, Reed and his students have discovered four expo stars.

“As an employee for the foundation, it was awesome to see alumni come back for an event because it’s nice to see that even after you graduate, you’re still welcomed back to have fun,” said Guzzi.

For more information on upcoming planetarium shows, visit the spring 2016 schedule of public planetarium shows & events for dates and times.

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