DARK DOME Planetarium
Traveling Science Education
Inspiring and encouraging the minds of tomorrow has been a passion for us here at Teeter's Telescopes. Astronomy is an amazing science and is one of the first disciplines of science children gravitate to (pun intended!). It is imperative that the wonders of the solar system, the galaxy and the universe be brought to children and students of all ages. As such, Teeter's Telescopes offers our traveling "Dark Dome" planetarium which can be set up at your facility (school, library, daycare center, party, etc.). Just like it's larger permanent cousins, our planetarium's dome ceiling is an ideal surface on which to project the nighttime sky along with pictures and diagrams of the constellations, planets, stars, and galaxies.
How Does the Dark Dome Work?
When the Dark Dome comes to your facility, we unpack it, inflate it, set up our digital projection system and then run "programs" for all of the attendees.
What does a "Program" include?
We can be flexible to your time and budget but in general one "program" is approximately a 50 minute educational lesson including time both inside and outside of the "Dome."
For how many people is a "Program?"
The "Dome" comfortably fits 25 kids/students and a handful of adults at one time. Then, for example, if you have 75 attendees we would suggest three (3) Programs of 25 people each.
What is taught during each "Program?"
We have experience doing lessons for kids, students and adults of all ages. We can gear our presentation to those in attendance, covering topics as elementary as the Sun/Earth system, to the Planets, to Exoplanets, to the Galaxy, to Blackholes, etc. We even encourage debate on the "age old" subject of "IS PLUTO A PLANET?!"
Who is the instructor?
With more than 15 years of experience running the Dark Dome and similar planetariums at hundreds of different facilities, Rob Teeter (owner of Teeter's Telescopes LLC) is the scientist who will be leading each program. Rob holds Bachelors and Masters degrees in scientific fields and has been an avid astronomer himself for over 25 years. Planetary Geology is Rob's favorite subsegment of astronomy.
How much space do we need?
When fully inflated the Dark Dome measures 18 feet in diameter and approximately 10 feet tall. HOWEVER, the Dark Dome is "squishy" so can fit in smaller spaces if need be. We have done programs in facilities with ceilings as low as 7 feet. For maximum enjoyment of the full "dome" experience, spaces like gyms, lunch rooms, auditorium stages, etc. make the best locations to situate the dome.
How do you get in/out of the "Dome?"
Unlike older versions of inflatable planetariums that you may be used to, there is no crawling on the floor to get in and out! The Dark Dome uses a 5 foot tall door that most people (certainly all children) can simply walk through.
Can the Dome be setup outside?
Unfortunately not. When the dome sits outside the air temperature inside of it easily becomes 10+ degrees warmer than the outside temperature which can make for an uncomfortable experience for everyone involved (including your instructor!). An air conditioned space is best.
How does my facility book the Dark Dome?
If you are located within New Jersey, you would book your program(s) through our partner company, PEARL OBSERVATORY:
If you are located outside of New Jersey, you may contract with us directly! We tend to stay within a couple hours driving distance of our home base of Rockaway, NJ, but with enough advance notice we can be booked by out of state clients. Please inquire via our CONTACT form below for more information.
What is the cost of the Dark Dome?
The cost is $295.00 for the first program at your facility and then $110.00 for every additional program at the same site on the same day. For example, if booking us for four (4) programs for approximately 100 attendees at your facility, that would be $295 + $110(3) for a total of $625.00 for four programs running a total of approximately 4 hours for a total of approximately 6 total hours on site for us (including set up and take down).
Are you insured?
Yes, both PEARL OBSERVATORY and Teeter's Telescopes LLC carry full liability insurance in the very unlikely event someone was to become injuring during one of our programs. More information is available upon request should your facility require it in order to book the Dark Dome.