Bassett Planetarium

Bassett Planetarium

Morgan Hall Home of Bassett Planetarium


For more than fifty years the Bassett Planetarium located in Morgan Hall has provided programs on the night sky to Amherst and Five College classes and groups and to regional community organizations and school groups. The facility is equipped with an original Spitz A3p optical projector and seats for 60 people under a 9.1 meter dome. The Bassett Planetarium presentations are geared to help visitors develop an understanding of the apparent motions of the heavens, in particular the apparent motions of the sun and circumpolar constellations in addition to celestial navigation and finding north.  Seasonal skies and the mechanics and structure of the solar system and the universe can be explored as well.

The Bassett Planetarium is open without charge to educational groups of 10 or more during the academic year between the hours of 9 a.m. and 4 p.m., Monday – Friday, by appointment only. To Schedule a Group Visit “click here". Please note that the building is NOT handicap accessible, nor are there adequate restrooms for groups.  

For questions please contact Alfred Venne Planetarium Director.


 Wilder front door

Wilder Observatory

Built in 1903, the Wilder Observatory on Snell Street holds what was once one of the largest refractor telescopes in the world. (79 Snell Street for GPS)

A few more words on what the telescope...


The Wilder Observatory on Snell Street (click here for a map) is free and open to all, starting at 9 p.m. every clear Saturday from April through October. Depending on what is in the sky at the time, visitors may see the moon, planets, asteroids, comets, multiple stars, star clusters, nebulae, galaxies and more through the large, world-class refractor telescope. Students, faculty, staff, community members, family and friends are welcome. Weekend programs are provided in partnership with the Astronomy Association

For questions please contact Alfred Venne Observatory Director.


Additional Information:

Tom Whitney 413-256-6234