‘History of Rock ‘n’ Roll,’ Birdwatch-Architecture Tours, ‘Environmental Explorations’

‘History of Rock ‘n’ Roll’ to Perform Live in the Planetarium

The History of Rock n Roll performing LIVE at the Reichert Planetarium! Sunday, April 2, 2023 at 6pmThe popular Long Island band “History of Rock n Roll” will perform live in the Vanderbilt Reichert Planetarium theater on Sunday, April 2, at 6:00 pm. Take a lively, 90-minute, multi-media musical journey from the 1950s through the ‘70s and beyond.

Beginning with the inception of rock ‘n’ roll, the experience moves from Elvis Presley and The Beatles to the sounds of Disco and Billy Joel. The History of Rock ‘n’ Roll combines music, costumes, video, and planetarium special effects in an unforgettable evening.

Presenting the “look” of each decade is just as important to this experience as the music. Bandleader John M. Pinna says: “It’s not enough to simply play the songs. Music is the soundtrack to people’s lives. So, what better way to represent each decade than to wear the fashions of each decade that people remember so fondly? We bring decades of rock ‘n’ roll to life. It’s also a lot of fun!”


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Curator to Lead Morning Birdwatch-Architecture Tours

On select spring dates at 8:00 am, the Vanderbilt Museum will offer an early morning Birdwatch and Architecture Tour with the Vanderbilt’s director of curatorial affairs. Participants will enjoy the unique opportunity to view the Vanderbilt estate in the early dawn hours when the grounds are still closed but the birds are active.

Schedule: March 18 | April 1, 15, 29 | May 13

Tickets are free for members and $12.00 for non-members.

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Sturdy hiking footwear is strongly suggested. Participants are asked to bring their own binoculars.

Morning birdwatches are semi-regular touring events offered during the fall and spring months, when local and migratory bird species are at their most active and visible – during the first northward wave of migration along the Atlantic flyway.

Each “birdwatch” will feature aspects of the estate’s architectural history while participants view the Vanderbilt’s resident avian species and hear their calls and songs. Some of the species observed and identified recently at the Vanderbilt include red-tailed hawks, osprey, merlin, brant, northern flickers, great-horned owls, grackle, white-breasted nuthatch, mourning doves, and more.

Vanderbilt and Whaling Museum Offer ‘Environmental Exploration’

The Whaling Museum & Education Center of Cold Spring Harbor and the Suffolk County Vanderbilt Museum will offer a joint program, Environmental Exploration, on April 5-6, for children in Grades 1-5.

Wednesday, April 5 – Explore the Vanderbilt Museum’s natural history collections and learn how global warming affects the planet’s ecosystems. Use a 3D-printed coral polyp to demonstrate coral bleaching, examine preserved marine life, and make a shark tooth necklace.

Thursday, April 6 – Roll up your sleeves at The Whaling Museum & Education Center and explore how to help keep Long Island Sound clean! Discover the dangerous effects of oil spills and water run-off through an educator-led watershed model demonstration. Decorate your own fabric tote bag to reuse again and again.




Far Beyond the Moon: Space Life Support Systems

Dr. David Munns, Professor of History at John Jay College of Criminal Justice, will give a lecture on Thursday, April 13, at 7:00 pm in the Vanderbilt’s Reichert Planetarium on the diverse technical systems needed to support life in space.                                                

Munns’s lecture will draw heavily from his 2021 book Far Beyond the Moon: A History of Life Support Systems in the Space Age, co-authored with Kärin Nickelsen (University of Pittsburgh Press). In Far Beyond the Moon, Munns shares the dramatic story of engineering efforts by astronauts and scientists to create artificial habitats for humans in orbiting space stations, as well as on journeys to Mars and beyond. Along the way, he explores the less than glamorous but very real problem posed by self-contained, long-term life support: How can biological waste be recycled to create clean air, water, and food in highly regulated artificial environments?

Munns’s retelling of midcentury science highlights the unsung heroes of the space program—the sanitary engineers, nutritionists, plant physiologists, bacteriologists, and algologists who created and tested artificial environments for space based on chemical technologies of life support. It is a “bottom up” historiographic view that speaks to the past and future of interstellar sustainability.

This event is made possible with the support of the Robert David Lion Gardiner Foundation.


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David Munns is a Professor in the Department of History at John Jay College of Criminal Justice. He earned a Ph.D. in History of Science and Technology at Johns Hopkins University, and a M.Phil. from the University of Sydney.

Munns is an expert in the histories of astronomy and environmental technologies. His first book, ­A Single Sky: How an International Community Forged the Science of Radio Astronomy (MIT Press, 2013), examined astronomy’s departure from visible light and the intrepid work of radio engineers to set aside Cold War rivalries in an international effort to reveal the structure of the universe. His second book, Engineering the Environment: Phytotrons and the Quest for Climate Control in the Cold War (University of Pittsburgh Press, 2017), was the first history of phytotrons, large laboratories that enabled plant scientists to experiment on environmental causes.

Prior to joining John Jay College of Criminal Justice, Munns held positions at Drexel University in Pennsylvania and Imperial College London.


Lizzo, Bowie: New Laser Shows at Reichert Planetarium

The Vanderbilt Reichert Planetarium will premiere two new laser shows – Laser Lizzo on Friday, March 31, at 9:00 pm, and Laser Bowie on Saturday, April 1, at 9:00 pm.
Each will run for 6 weeks.

Laser Bowie celebrates the musical legacy of one of the most creative musical artists of all time – David Bowie. Enjoy the glam and spectacle of lasers dancing along with Bowie’s innovative music. The set list for this dazzling show includes Let’s Dance, Under Pressure, Space Oddity, and more.

Lizzo is a witty artist who blends hip-hop and soul with commentary on race, sexuality, and body positivity. The combination is working, and she has a stack of Grammys to prove it. Experience hip-hop’s latest superstar in a remarkable way. The set list includes Better in Color, Juice, Boys, Truth Hurts, and more.




Astronomy Day: Science Demos, Hands-on Projects, Telescope Viewing

Astronomy Day, Saturday April 29. 11am-3pm: Crafts, science demos, planetarium shows, solar observing, and more! 8pm-10pm: free observing with telescopes (weather permitting). Sponsored by National Grid.The Vanderbilt Reichert Planetarium will celebrate Astronomy Day 2023 on Saturday, April 29. The event is part of an international celebration of educational programs designed to engage audiences in the awe-inspiring fields of Earth and space science. Daytime activities are free to all visitors who pay general admission. Evening telescope observing is free.

Sponsored generously by National Grid.

Daytime program | 11:00 am to 3:00 pm

This Vanderbilt STEM education event will include exciting science, take-home materials, and engaging discussion about science and society. Participants will create nebula spin art, investigate constellations, explore craters, and much more! These fun activities introduce guests to the ongoing research happening at NASA in the fields of Earth science, planetary science, and astrophysics. Astronomy educators will perform free earth science and astronomy demonstrations for adults and children. Toolkits for these demonstrations were developed by the National Informal Science Education Network (NISE NET).




Evening program | 8:00 to 10:00 pm

Reichert Planetarium astronomy educators and the Astronomical Society of Long Island will set up telescopes in the Rose Garden adjacent to the Planetarium. Visitors will have a chance to see close-up views of the Moon and other celestial highlights in the nighttime sky. Viewing is free and telescopes are available to visitors of all ages.

Note: All planetarium show tickets include general admission (access to the exhibits in the Vanderbilt Mansion, Marine Museum, all grounds and gardens, and our astronomy day celebration).


Evening Birdwatches, Tours Begin March 24

On select spring Fridays, the Vanderbilt Museum will offer an Evening Birdwatch and Architecture Tour with the Museum’s director of curatorial affairs. Participants will enjoy the unique opportunity to view the Vanderbilt estate at dusk, when the grounds are closed but the birds are active.

Schedule: April 7 & 21 | May 5 & 19

Tickets are free for members, $12.00 for non-members. Sturdy hiking footwear is strongly suggested, and participants are asked to bring their own binoculars.


Purchase Tickets


Evening birdwatches are biweekly touring events offered during the fall and spring months, when local and migratory bird species are at their most active and visible – during the waves of migration along the Atlantic flyway.


Each “birdwatch” will feature aspects of the estate’s architectural history while participants view the Vanderbilt’s resident avian species and hear their calls and songs. Some of the species observed and identified recently at the Vanderbilt Museum include red-tailed hawks, osprey, merlin, brant, northern flickers, great-horned owls, grackle, white-breasted nuthatch, mourning doves, and more.

‘Our Home: An Earth and Art Adventure’

Our Home: An Earth and Art Adventure! Sunday, May 7, 2023, 3:30-6:30pm. A kids and family event (Ages 6+). Heckscher Museum and Vanderbilt Planetarium. View the art and create a masterpiece at the Hechscher Museum of Art, then enjoy a show at the planetarium! End the night by observing the sky through the Vanderbilt's telescopes (weather permitting). $15/person. Register online at www.heckscher.org.The Vanderbilt Museum and The Heckscher Museum of Art are offering Our Home: An Earth and Art Adventure on Sunday, May 7, from 3:30 to 6:30 pm, for families with children age 6 and up.

Begin your adventure at The Heckscher Museum of Art. Explore the exhibitions and create a masterpiece inspired by your home and the place we all call home – Earth!

Then, meet at the Vanderbilt Museum for a 30-minute live lecture on the night sky using the Planetarium theater’s amazing star-projection system. The presenter will show the objects that are visible in the sky the night of the event, including stars, constellations, nebulae, and galaxies. Visitors will then watch the full-dome film We Are Guardians.

Following the programs in the theater, weather permitting, guests will have an opportunity to look through one of the Vanderbilt Observatory telescopes and to create an earth-themed craft. Sandwiches, snacks, and soft drinks will be available for purchase in the Planetarium’s café.

$15 per person. Advance registration is recommended. Walk-ins welcome if space allows.

Register today or call (631) 380-3230.




Summer Science Fun for Children in Grades K-5

2023 Summer Science Fun. Dates: July 10-14 or August 14-18. $200/$180 members. Jr Astronomer Workshop, Grades 3-5. Junior Explorer Workshop, Grades K-3. Click here for more information.Fascinating, fun summer learning for grades K-5! Vanderbilt Museum science educators will offer Junior Explorer and Astronomer workshops for children in two, week-long sessions in July and August. Sail the seas, dive the oceans, make unique art. Advance registration is required.

Summer Science Fun

July 10-14 or August 14-18

9 am – 12 pm

$200 non-members | $180 members

Interested in membership? Learn more here.

Become a Member


Space is limited and spots fill quickly! Advance registration is required.

For more information and to register, please contact dawn@vanderbilltmuseum.org.

Junior Explorer Workshop Grades K-3

Explore the world at the Vanderbilt Museum!

Join us for a week of creative science and history workshops. We’ll sail the seas, dive the deepest oceans, soar among the tallest trees, and make unique art inspired by nature and the collections.

Registration is open for children entering Kindergarten through  3rd grade.

Register JULY Jr Explorer Workshop Register AUGUST Jr Explorer Workshop


Junior Astronomer Workshop Grades 3-5

The Reichert Planetarium presents an exciting program for young astronomers!

Junior Astronomers have the opportunity to learn about multiple astronomy topics including our solar system, how to use a telescope, and how to identify constellations they can see from their own backyard. This program focuses on hands-on learning with STEAM activities and crafts supplemented by immersive live and pre-recorded fulldome presentations in our Planetarium theater.

Registration is open for children entering 3rd through 5th grade.


Register JULY Jr Astronomer Workshop Register AUGUST Jr Astronomer Workshop


The July and August sessions of each workshop will feature the same activities.

For this reason, we recommend against registering a child for the same workshop twice.

Trivia Night: How Well Do You Know Huntington?

In honor of the 370th anniversary of Huntington’s founding on April 2, 1653, join us online for a special Trivia Night about All Things Huntington.

We’ll ask about local history, nature, stores, beaches, celebrities, streets, and more within the Town, from Cold Spring Harbor to Northport to Dix Hills.

Prizes for top winners! Hosted with the Town of Huntington Historic Partnership.

The Whaling Museum and Education Center of Cold Spring is hosting the event with the Town of Huntington Historic Partnership, a 16-member group that includes the Whaling Museum, Vanderbilt Museum; the Huntington, Northport, and Centerport-Greenlawn historical societies; Preservation Long Island; Walt Whitman Birthplace; John Gardiner Farm; Soldiers & Sailors Memorial Building; the Heckscher Museum of Art; and other historical organizations and historic houses.




Paved with Love: A Gift That Lasts Forever

Looking for a fresh, unique, everlasting gift for a loved one?

Purchase and engrave a brick that will become a permanent part of the Vanderbilt Museum.

Your donation will help the Vanderbilt to bring outstanding science, history, and art education to more than 25,000 students annually.

Your brick will be installed and displayed installed in your favorite brick walkway around the Vanderbilt Mansion and Terrace, or on the 43-acre grounds of the beautiful waterfront Estate.

Purchase a Brick


For more information, call Debbie Stacel at 631-854-5579, or email: debbie@vanderbiltmuseum.org


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