WELCOME to our Public Outreach Page! Our motto:  ”The Larger the Island of Knowledge, the Greater the Shoreline of Wonder!”  or “Studying a Big Universe at a Small College!”We specialize in teaching undergraduates, but offer a number of public programs during the year to school groups, community groups (girls scouts, boy scouts, etc) and general public.

Next Event – The VENUS TRANSIT of June 5, 2012!

On June 5, 2012,  we will be observing an event that will not recur again until the year 2117 – a transit of Venus across the disk of the sun!
The Venus Transit is starting around 3:30PM and will continue through sunset. The Venus Transit is when the planet Venus crosses through the disk of the sun as Venus passes the Earth in its orbit. During the transit, it is possible to see the silhouette of Venus as a tiny circle traversing the seething cauldron of the sun’s surface using a solar telescope.

If anyone from the campus would like to experience this event – please come out to Brackett Observatory!  We will have our telescopes trained on the sun starting around 3:30PM and continuing on through sunset. Our telescopes allow us to see sunspots, solar prominences and other features on the sun’s disk.  It should be awesome!

For more information you can see a historical account of transits of Venus at:

Other good articles are at:

An image which at least shows the scale of Venus against the sun is below.

I hope you can make it and we will see it live tomorrow, June 5, from 3:30-7:30PM at Brackett Observatory!  And again if you can’t make this Venus transit, the next one is December 10, 2117!

Other events will be arranged with our planetarium, which is described below.

Millikan Planetarium  - Home to the Best Skies in Claremont!

The Millikan Laboratory houses an excellent planetarium, featuring the latest technology for simulating the night sky. This facility is ideal for public shows, school groups, and introductory classes, and can accurately project the positions of over 2000 stars, and simulate the rising and setting of the sun, motions of the planets, and effects of latitude, and time on the celestial sphere. We have hosted numerous public and community groups in the planetarium, as well as teacher workshops from around the area. If you are interested in visiting our facilities, please contact either Dr. Penprase at, or David Haley at

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