Wow. This tiny word sums up the huge out-of-this-world
experience at Adler Planetarium's new Deep Space Adventure
Using advanced digital technology, real scientific data
collected from space and storytelling that holds even short
attention spans, if Adler's new movie was any more real you'd
actually feel the blast from the explosion as a star is torn apart
by a black hole. Or as Adler President, Paul H. Knappenberger Jr.,
says, "It's the next best thing to flying your own space ship."
Adler set out to create an experience for every visitor to
become a space explorer, Knappenberger says. "We wanted to do
something different and really push the envelope."
The jewel of that effort is the Grainger Sky Theater. Don't
expect just any ordinary sky show here. The 180-degree dome and
special lighting provide a 360-degree experience in ultra-high
definition that actually makes you feel you are moving -- flying on
a space ship through our Milky Way, all the way back over Chicago
and landing at Adler.
Entering through the Clark Family Welcome Gallery, kids will be
immediately drawn to the four interactive screens. In one, kids can
use their hands to guide astronauts floating in space back to their
space station. It is in the Welcome Gallery that families will
first meet main character of the show -- the Searcher.
The Deep Space Adventure screenplay, written by sci-fi author
Carl Sagan's son, Nick, and narrated by actor Billy Crudup, tells
the story of an alien who is searching for the people of his
planet. Visitors join him on his space ship after he finds his own
Following the show, visitors will be directed into a new exhibit
gallery that features themes in the show. Kids will especially like
the mirrors showing the effects of gravity near the black hole on
their bodies and feeling the weight of an ordinary can of soda on
Earth, the moon and Jupiter.
Deep Space Adventure opens Friday and you'll want your family to
be among the first in line. It is an experience you'll never
Tamara is the editor of Chicago Parent and mom of three.
See more of Tamara's stories here.
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