Morehead Planetarium and Science Center is a unit of the University of North Carolina in Chapel Hill, North Carolina.
The Morehead Building houses the GSK Fulldome Theater, as well as the Science Stage, exhibits, and Morehead classrooms. In front of Morehead, along Franklin Street, you will find our large iconic sundial. The Morehead Building and planetarium was built as a gift from John Motley Morehead III, UNC class of 1891, who envisioned a place where the most curious could learn about the sky.
Since the planetarium opened in 1949, millions of North Carolina students, teachers and families, as well as visitors from around the world, have benefited from Morehead science programs. Our most famous visitors were the U.S. astronauts in training for Mercury, Gemini and Apollo missions, including 11 of the 12 astronauts who have walked on the Moon.
Our onsite programs include classes for adults and children, special courses for teachers, summer camps for children, after-school programs, memberships, public viewings of astronomical events and public lectures.
Our planetarium is the largest, and the first, in the southeast. Many of our shows are original productions, written and designed by Morehead’s production team. Our most popular show is Carolina Skies, which is a live-narrated show that explains what’s happening in the North Carolina skies at times throughout the year.
Our school focused programs provide hands-on STEM curricula that supports student learning and encourages curiosity. Through generous donors, we also provide scholarships to NC public schools for onsite and outreach visits. Our outreach programs serve North Carolina and beyond through the mobile planetarium and our fleet of mobile lab vans that focus on chemistry, biology, physics, and other science disciplines. In 2020, we revamped these outreach programs to become more inclusive of school needs.
Since 2010, Morehead has produced the North Carolina Science Festival—the country’s first and largest celebration of STEM.
Between traditional onsite offerings and its state outreach, Morehead serves more than a half million people every year.