Our Cape Fear Pride series features Sunset Beach and some of the unique characteristics of the quaint Brunswick County Beach Town. The Ingram Planetarium is one of the few places in the area where visitors can learn about stars, planets and science. About twelve thousand visitors a year walk through the doors of the Ingram Planetarium in Sunset Beach. Once inside, its not only the eyes and ears engaged in learning about astronomy but hands as well. "Astronomy is a big wide open field and it can be very confusing and intimidating, but its a pleasure to me to see the visitors have a realization, that eureka moment," Scott Kucera, the Igram Planetarium's Executive Director said. The science hall features exhibits dedicated to teaching kids and adults about the planets first hand. "He's getting to the age where he's getting to learn about science and stars in school and we thought this would be a good experience for him," Danny Albanese, Planetarium visitor and Dad said. The planetarium is part of the Ocean Isle Museum Foundation. Five years ago, the planetarium opened as an outgrowth of a Natural History Museum. It features telescope workshops and astronomy programs. The programs meet curriculum standars to further science education for students in the area, and visitors to Sunset Beach. "My favorite part was when we were drawing the chalk. When we were drawing the chalk to see if our shadows moved," Justin Albanese, a visitor said. Some of the most interesting parts of the planetarium include an award winning exhibit put together by NASA with a broadband internet connection, showing the most updated information about star patterns and planetary alignment. Another fun feature: the dome, that projects the wonder of the night sky and beyond. "When all the lights go down and you have a perfectly starry sky with no clouds its a great place to sit back and just look at the stars. It's a great place to learn about the stars too," Kucera said. Admission is six dollars for kids, eight dollars for adults.
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