EL PASO, Texas (KTSM) – Monday will be a special date as the new Roddenberry Planetarium will be officially inaugurated.

The El Paso Independent School District and the City of El Paso will officially celebrate the competition of this project with a ribbon-cutting ceremony.

“This collaboration allows us to continue to provide students with awe-inspiring lessons about the universe and space exploration across a 40-ft dome,” said Superintendent Diana Sayavedra. “It has nurtured a passion for science and the stars for students for decades and will continue to inspire generations of students to come. The Roddenberry is an El Paso treasure.” 

The partnership between EPISD and the City of El Paso gives the community an immersive all-science experience in a modern $1.16 million facility.

A $951,101 Community Development Block Grant provided the bulk of the funding for the area’s only Planetarium – originally built in 1969 at EPISD’s former Boeing Drive offices.  

Modernizations to the 3,635 square foot planetarium include specialized lighting and sound, a new HVAC system, a ticket room, a catwalk above the dome and storage facilities.  

The Planetarium represents EPISD’s third recently completed projects developed in partnership with the City of El Paso. The other collaborations are the Jefferson Baseball Field at Washington Park and the Austin Softball Field at Memorial Park. Both are Bond 2016 projects.  

The Roddenberry Planetarium, created through a partnership between the National Science Foundation and the Women’s League of El Paso, has welcomed more than 2 million visitors since opening in 1969. More than 13,000 have already enjoyed the star-studded educational programming offered at the new Planetarium since its soft opening in fall 2021.  

El Paso students travel to the Planetarium during the school year for grade level specific programming. Public shows also are offered during the summertime which feature an educational film and tour of El Paso’s night sky.

Go to episd.org/planetarium for more information.  

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