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UTSA hosts July 17 stargazing and 'Fantastic Voyage' screening

By Christi Fish
Public Affairs Specialist

(July 14, 2009)--UTSA's faculty astronomers invite the star-struck to campus Friday, July 17 to enjoy the fifth installment of its signature series, "Friday Nights, Celestial Lights." The evening event including a movie and stargazing is free and open to the public.

The event will begin at 7:30 p.m. in Science Building Room 2.01.12 on the Main Campus with a showing of the 1966 Oscar-winner "Fantastic Voyage." In the film, diplomat scientist Jan Benes is nearly assassinated. When a submarine is shrunken to microscopic size and injected into his blood stream with a small crew in order to save him, a host of problems begin for the rescuers. Actors Stephen Boyd, Raquel Welch and Edmond O'Brien star.

Weather permitting, following the movie at approximately 9:15 p.m., attendees will have the opportunity to view Saturn as well as the Ring Nebula in Lyra and the globular clusters in Hercules from the Science Building's fourth floor patio. UTSA's advanced collection of telescopes will be available for stargazing, including a 15-inch Newtonian telescope and several 8-inch Cassegrain telescopes.

Sponsored by the UTSA Department of Physics and Astronomy, the astronomy series is inspired by the International Year of Astronomy, which commemorates the 400th anniversary that Galileo Galilei used a telescope to observe the heavens.

Reservations to attend the evening events are not required, but seating is limited and available on a first-come, first-served basis. Both the lecture hall (Science Building Room 2.01.12) and the fourth-floor patio are wheelchair accessible.

To learn more about the July 17 event, contact Professor Eric Schlegel at (210) 458-6425) or lecturer Mark Jurena at (210) 458-4922.

The "Friday Nights, Celestial Lights" series will take a break in August, and will resume Friday, Sept. 18.

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