The Burke-Gaffney Observatory Public Open Houses are a great way to learn about astronomy with your kids aged 8 and older. The open houses generally last one to two hours and involve looking at various astronomical objects through a big telescope and discussing the nature of these objects. The staff and volunteers who run the program also use a fenced-in observation deck on the roof to show you the constellations or celestial objects with one their smaller portable telescopes.
Due to limited space, free tickets must be reserved online. The Observatory warns that families may experience frustration in trying to get tickets, but please understand: there aren’t many clear nights in Halifax, the observatory can only accommodate about 24 people but families who have visited say: “be patient – it’s well worth the wait!”
The Observatory also offers private tours for groups, such as school groups or clubs. These usually happen on Monday nights and must be booked weeks or months in advance. Details are here.
Note that the observatory is not accessible – there are two flights of stairs.
Burke-Gaffney Observatory Public Open House
- Friday, February 28th at 6:30- 8:00 pm (in event of poor weather, it will be rescheduled for the same time on Saturday, and failing that on Sunday). Tickets will be available online on February 24th at 7:00 pm.
- Friday, February 28th at 8:15 pm – 9:45 pm (in event of poor weather, it will be rescheduled for the same time on Saturday, and failing that on Sunday). Tickets will be available online on February 24th at 7:00 pm.
Where: Saint Mary’s University, Loyola Building, 5865 Gorsebrook Avenue, Halifax
Website: Astronomy Nova Scotia or Saint Mary’s University
Contact: Dave Lane, Observatory Director
Phone: (902) 496-8257