Now Playing! The Secret Lives of Stars


Not all stars are created equal. Some are massive. Others are tiny; almost insignificant. The specific characteristics of a star will determine what type of life it will lead, how long it might live and even the type of death it will die. We will witness the amazing variety of stars and peer into their secret lives.  Narrated by Sir Patrick Stewart of TV’s Star Trek: The Next Generation and the X-Men films.

Upcoming show times: June 26 at 2:15 pm, June 28 at 7 pm, June 29 at 3:15 pm, July 17 at 1 pm

Tickets can be purchased at the door with CASH only or by clicking below through a 3rd party website:

Eventbrite - Secret Lives of Stars

Science Fact or Science Fiction?


June 8, 2013

Ever wonder if warp drive is actually possible?  Will we ever have flying cars and  genetically engineered humans?  Join us to watch some favorite science fiction movies in the Science Dome and learn about the science behind them.

Fun for ALL ages! 

Click Here for a  FULL SCHEDULE and LIST OF Exhibits

Exhibits, demonstrations and talks (FREE):

  • noon-5:30 pm
Featured Movies $5
(purchase now until June 8th at the Science Dome or online through Eventbrite for a small fee)
Eventbrite - Science Fact or Science Fiction? - June 8th 2013
  • 10:45 am Treasure Planet (PG)
  • 1 pm Back to the Future (PG)
  • 3:15 pm Jurassic Park (PG-13)
  • 5:55 pm Serenity (PG-13)

Costume Contests (FREE):

  • 12:30 pm 12 & under
  • 5:30 pm 13  & up


This event is being offered in conjunction with the Seattle Science Festival! For full details visit


Dynamic Earth – Coming Soon!


Starting March 22nd!

The award-winning Dynamic Earth explores the inner workings of Earth’s great life support system: the global climate. With visualizations based on satellite monitoring data and advanced supercomputer simulations, this cutting-edge production follows a trail of energy that flows from the Sun into the interlocking systems that shape our climate: the atmosphere, oceans, and the biosphere. Audiences will ride along on swirling ocean and wind currents, dive into the heart of a monster hurricane, come face-to-face with sharks and gigantic whales, and fly into roiling volcanoes.
Dynamic Earth is the result of a two-year long collaboration between Spitz Creative Media, the Advanced Visualization Lab at the National Center for Supercomputing Applications at the University of Illinois, NASA’s Scientific Visualization Studio, and Thomas Lucas Productions, Inc., in association with the Denver Museum of Nature & Science and NASA Earth Science. Narrated by Liam Neeson.

A Sneak Peek

We are getting excited for the grand opening this Saturday January 19th, 11 am-4:30 pm!

If you are feeling bummed that you didn’t get seats to one of the shows on Saturday stop by and put your name on the waiting list.  See that floor space up in front?  We have some cushions to make that some of the best “seats” in the house and they aren’t reserved!  So we’ll have room for a few more on Saturday.

In addition to Dome shows we have plenty to do!  The Tacoma Astronomical Society will have hourly presentations on Black Holes and the Apollo Missions to the Moon.  You can “taste” a comet, make your hair stand on end, extract DNA and much more at the hands-on exploration stations.  Watch a Chemistry Demo show and learn how to make the best science fair project. Our Dental Hygiene Clinic will be there too providing free screenings and the Lakewood Computer Clubhouse will have robots to show off!

Can’t make it Saturday?  Check out our Public Shows.

Grand Opening

  • January 19, 2013
  •  11 AM – 4:30 PM
  • FREE

Join us for a fun filled day to celebrate the Science Dome’s Grand Opening!  See a show in the brand new dome, participate in hands-on exploration stations and watch live science demonstrations.  This event is FREE and open to all ages!

Schedule for the day:

11-11:30 am – Ribbon cutting ceremony

11:30-4:30 pm – Hands on Exploration stations

11:30-4:30 pm – Science Dome shows (Reserve seats now!):

12:50 pm AND 3:00 pm – Chemistry Demo show

And we’re off!

It’s here folks!

The Pierce College Science Dome is complete… and it is amazing.

A huge 38-foot dome with programmable cove lights…

58 amazingly comfortable seats…

and breathtaking images.  Who could ask for anything more?

Oh yeah, a sound system that will knock your socks off, full dome videos, high resolution planetary surfaces, science on a sphere and a whole lot more.

Stay tuned.

Educator Open House December 12th 4-6 pm

Grand opening January 19th, 2013  11 am-4:30 pm

Venus Transit Recap

Thanks to everyone who made it out to see the Venus Transit!  There were well over 1000 people – luckily spread out over the 6 hours- who stopped by to catch this rare event!  We had a patch of beautiful blue skies the whole transit with just intermittent clouds.

photo by Ralph Morasch

If you were lucky enough to be there right at the beginning of the transit we were able to see the famous ring around Venus from light refracting through Venus’ atmosphere.  Several groups of sunspots were also visible on the sun surface.

Sunspots and Venus, photo by Ralph Morasch

Using the solar scope to view the transit, photo by Ralph Morasch

Thanks to some great astronomy students for making solar filters, solar funnels and telescope projectors, there were lots of great ways to see the transit!  Tacoma Astronomical Society members also dropped by with some bigger telescopes and H-alpha filters.

Venus and the sun projected with a solar funnel, photo by Dennis Brew

photo by Suzzanne Freeborn

Venus Transit June 5, 2012

Come and experience the 2012 Venus Transit at Pierce College!  This rare astronomical event won’t happen again for 105 years so it is your last chance to see it.  Venus will pass directly between us and the sun and create a mini-eclipse.  Astronomy students will be outside the Rainier building with telescopes and projection equipment so that you can safely view the event from 3-9pm and there will be public lectures on the historical and astronomical significance at 4pm, 6pm and 8pm in Rainier 361.

Bring the family!  Learn about how to view the sun safely and let the kids make pin hole cameras.

Rain or Shine!  We won’t let the weather get in the way.  If it is cloudy you’ll still be able to see the transit via a live video stream inside.

All events will be outside or inside the Rainier building.  Everything is completely FREE!

Here's a picture from the last Venus transit in 2004. (c) Mr. Eclipse