Public Events

Luminaria - Holiday Event

Sunday December 11
From 6:30-8:30pm

Join us for the 41st year of this Mount Lookout tradition.  As the neighborhood lights up the streets, the Cincinnati Observatory will open its buildings and telescopes for the general public.  Cruise from Mount Lookout Square to the Observatory for carolers, stargazing, our spacey gift shop, and hot drinks. 

Viewing through the historic telescopes is included (weather permitting). Great for all ages.

Cost: Free

No reservations required. 
For more information please call 513-321-5186.

Out of This World Gifts

Just in time for the holidays the Cincinnati Observatory's Gift Shop will be open throughout the season.

Before you buy that "toy store" telescope learn from the astronomers at the Cincinnati Observatory what to consider when purchasing a telescope for yourself, a friend or for your children. 

 The Observatory Gift Shop stocks a selection of Orion brand telescopes that our astronomers use.  From great starter scopes for kids to 8 & 10” scopes for serious amateur astronomers. Prices range from $125.00 to $650.00.
We have a special (while they last) on our astronomer's favorite, the Orion XT8 Classic Kit, for only $399.

Also available: Meteorites, Books, Science Activity Kits, Star Charts, Gift Memberships for the Stargazer in your family, Observatory Merchandise and more!

The Gift Shop is open Monday through Friday 12-4 and during our regularly scheduled Astro Thursday and Friday Night programs. Call 513-321-5186 for more information and for other gift shop hours.

Join us for our Luminaria Night holiday event on Sunday December 11th, 6:30-8:30pm.

Topics in Astronomy

Classes at the Cincinnati Observatory

These fun and laid-back classes for beginners focus on a variety of topics and will surely keep you looking up!    
Wednesday December 14:      Reasons for the Seasons    (7-9pm)
            Winter is coming!  But why?  What's really going on is truly astronomical

Tuesday January 10 or 17:     Intro to the Night Sky          (7-9pm)
            Learn the basics to finding stars, constellations, planets and more 

Tuesday February 7:               Star Oddities                       (7-9pm)
            Fly among the weirdest stars in the galaxy

Tuesday March 7:                   Marvelous Moon                    (7-9pm)
            Explore our closest neighbor in space.  Luna-tics welcome

Astronomer Dean Regas leads these classes and will also be your guide to the stars and planets of the season and point them out with you in the real sky with the Observatory telescopes (weather permitting).

   Cost per class:      $15 per person
                                   $12 for Observatory members

Sign Up Online or Call 513-321-5186.

Observatory Camp

December 19-23, from 9am-4pm

Looking for something astronomical for your kids to do during the first week of winter break?  Send them to Observatory Camp.  Through a partnership with the Cincinnati Museum Center, the Observatory is hosting five days of astronomical activities for kids grades 2-8.  You can sign up for 1-5 days by calling (513) 287-7001.  For prices and more details please see Cincinnati Museum Center

Monday, December 19

  • Telescopes: Travel to outer space with us without leaving Earth! Learn about the historic telescopes that are still in use today at the Cincinnati Observatory and find out more about new telescopes that let us see galaxies throughout our universe.

Tuesday, December 20

  • Stars and Moons: How many stars are in the universe? What did it take to put humans on the moon? Learn this and more as we look in and beyond our galaxy.  

Wednesday, December 21

  • Planets: There are eight magnificent planets in our solar system but what happened to our ninth planet? Could there be other planets to still discover? Find out as we explore our solar system!

Thursday, December 22

  • Living in Space: Do you have what it takes to be an astronaut? Put your skills to the test as we explore what astronauts need to live and thrive in outer space.

Friday, December 23

  • Rockets: Three… Two… One… Blast off into an awesome time! Explore spacecraft technology and build your own rocket.

Cosmic Kids

Family Classes
Saturdays January 21, February 18, March 18, April 15, and May 20

The Cincinnati Observatory will be hosting classes for the entire family. Explore the cosmos during our new multi-disciplinary class which helps grades 1st-6th learn and discover topics in astronomy and investigate the wonders beyond our world. This astronomy class is open to students with a curiosity about space, and their families. There will be safe solar viewing with the telescopes, tours of the buildings, and hands-on classroom activities to build confidence and knowledge in science.

New topics each month. Sign up for one class or up to all five. 
   January 21 - you'll learn all about telescopes
   February 18 - the topic is living in space
   March 18 - we'll take you to the Sun and stars
   April 15 - explore the planets
   May 20 - we're launching rockets

9:30-10:30 1st- 3rd Grade Students
11:00-12:00 4th- 6th Grade Students

Reservations are required and space is limited. 

Admission $5/person/class; Observatory members are free.

If you have any questions or would like to register, please call us at (513) 321-5186.

2017 Special Events

At the Cincinnati Observatory

Have a favorite planet?  Looking for the coolest events for 2017?
Astronomers always look to the future, and if you're a planner too, add these events on your calendar.  Call us for details: 513-321-5186.

Jan 28:          Use the Bigger Telescope Night

Feb 14:          Valentine's Night

Mar 11:          Baseball on the Planets 

Apr 6-8:         Thor's Days (best time to see Jupiter)

Apr 14:          First Light Night (the Observatory's 172nd Anniversary)

May 6:           Jupiter Night

June 11:        Sunday Sun-day Sundae

July 29:          Saturnday (best time to see Saturn)

Aug 5:            Saturnday 2 (just in case it's cloudy on July 29)

Aug 21:           Total Solar Eclipse (not in Cincinnati, however)

Sept 23:         ScopeOut/Great Outdoor Weekend