Delta College Planetarium and Bay City's Hell's Half Mile of Indie Movies
Delta College Planetarium at Night
Popular and Centrally Located
The recently renovated Delta College Planetarium and Learning Center draws so much visitor traffic, that the Bay City Convention and Visitors Bureau (BCCVB) began renting space in the building in September 2010 in order to present themselves to more visitors. NASA funds the planetarium facility, which allows it to 1) let space to the BCCVB, 2) operate an up-to-date 130-seat planetarium, and 3) run a rooftop observatory for much of the year in scheduled group and family events.
A number of print materials in the Planetarium lobby have been free for the taking and now, much more information is offered by the BCCVB about area attractions and amenities. The region within and surrounding Bay County, Frankenmuth, Saginaw, Midland, and Mt. Pleasant provides enough entertainment, shopping, historic, cultural, and dining experiences to fill an entire season of travel. In addition, planetarium staff is on hand to answer questions before and after each planetarium show or observatory event and BCCVB staff join them in information sharing.
This is the new Hot Spot in Bay City, if you're new in town, vacationing, or traveling on business and need some advise on what to see or a map and directions.
Bravo Bay City!
Delta College Planetarium and BCCVB
October Shows: Hell's Half Mile
The Delta College Planetarium is the place to go to enjoy Downtown Bay City's Hell's Half Mile Film & Music Festival. Its a weekend-long festival of Indie Films. It occurs the first weekend of October and includes several movies, a collection of film shorts, musical performances, and other activities. An Opening Night Party happens on the Thursday before the festival and offers lots of refreshments and an Indie film for $10.00. Discounts and passes are available for the whole weekend and films are $5.00 separately attended. See the link to the right for additional information.
If you remember Roald Dahl's The Dot and the Line, you will love the entries that have more fun with shapes.
Some of the other past shows at the planetarium have included:
- Astronaut (2012)
- Fly Me To the Moon
- Sesame Street: One World, One Sky - Big Bird's Adventure
- Cody Coyote's Adventure: Earth, Moon and Sun
- Stars of the Pharaohs
Hell's Half Mile Route
The Doubletree Hotel is 500 feet from the Delta College Planetarium and Bay City Convention and Visitors Center.
Part of the Hell's Half Mile Film Festival, just two blocks from the Delta Planetarium
Learning for Enjoyment
Because NASA provides finding and Delta College operates the facility, the planetarium targets the practical application of STEM courses for children and youth, while offering related information to adults through entertainment. Many amateur astronomers have begun their interest at this observatory and we know that amateur astronomers discover more celestrial bodies than do NASA scientists, who are happy to hear abou them. Double bravo!
STEM courses examine Science, Technology, Engineering, and Mathematics. Delta Planetarium and observatory use all of these in shows and community education services. Planetarium shows occur in the afternoons for kids ages 10 and under, and in the evenings for older youth and adults. Many school classes from around Mid-Michigan visit on field trips, but other groups often enjoy the facilities. As part of Delta Community College, the facility serves college level students and instructors. A calendar of events appears on the planetarium website, while newsletters and announcements of the activities of local astronomy clubs are also available at the Delta Planetarium.
Another View of the Facility
Winter Light Shows
Across Center Street from a strip of popular antique stores and restaurants is the Delta College Planetarium and Learning Center, at the corner of Saginaw Street. This is the east side of the Saginaw River, across from the Veteran’s Memorial Park and Riverwalk that span the western waterfront all the way from the Liberty Harbor Marina to Middleground Island at the south end of the green-space complex.
These downtown parks, bridges, historic buildings, and adjacent street lamps wear many lights during the winter holidays. The colorfully lighted exhibits, roads, and buildings create a free drive-thru light show that is a happy addition to any trip downtown to the Saginaw River, parks, and planetarium. At least a mile long and improving yearly, the light show drive is long enough to be really enjoyable without tiring out young children.
At this time of year, the planetarium shows include a number of topics related to astronomy and STEM courses, but also Christmas and New years' celebration shows with animations, geometrical designs forming before viewers' eyes, and other entertainment. The children in the audience oooh and aaah as if it were the 4th of July fireworks -- So do I!
A Tour of Downtown Bay City
Fun and Facts in Bay City
Famous Ice Cream Near the Planetarium
In the other half of Downtown Bay City on the corner of Henry Street at the western foot of the Liberty Bridge, you will find some of the finest homemade ice cream in the country at Mama Lupo’s. The owners and staff are friendly and eager to serve their customers --They have some unusual flavors among their 130 and offer free samples. They will even make up a flavor for you.
The parking lot along the front and side of the shop is a bit small, but street parking is usually open nearby. A couple of picnic tables out front provide an area to relax with your ice cream if you want to sit down and enjoy the Downtown scenery. It’s a good place to start or end a walk around western Downtown Bay City.