Popular children's series The Magic Tree House coming to W.A. Gayle Planetarium

Posted: Tuesday, 09 September 2014

MONTGOMERY - A new full-dome planetarium movie based on the popular children's book series the Magic Tree House can be seen at the W.A. Gayle Planetarium starting this month.

"Magic Tree House: Space Mission" is based on the best-selling series by Mary Pope Osborne. The film sends sibling adventurers Jack and Annie on a fun-filled journey to discover the secrets of the sun, moon, planets and space travel, and includes an appearance by former NASA astronaut and Montgomery-native Kathryn C. Thornton.

The film will now be a permanent addition to the W.A. Gayle Planetarium's library of programming and will be shown to visiting school groups and during public shows, said Planetarium Director Rick Evans.

"Space Mission" was developed by the University of North Carolina's Morehead Planetarium and Science Center in partnership with Magic Tree House authors Will and Mary Pope Osborne. It marks the first time the blockbuster book franchise has been developed for multimedia exposure in full-dome planetariums.

Since its debut, the beloved Magic Tree House book series has been published in more than 30 countries and 29 languages, and has sold more than 70 million books in North America alone.

The W.A. Gayle Planetarium is located in Oak Park and is operated by Troy University for the City of Montgomery. It is one of the largest planetariums between Atlanta and New Orleans, and more than 100,000 K-12 students have attended educational shows there over the last five years.

Upgraded in February of this year with a new full-dome digital projection system, the planetarium is now the region's premier astronomy education facility, as well as a multimedia theater for films, lectures, live music and digital art performances.

The Planetarium hosts public shows Monday-Thursday at 4 p.m., on Sunday at 2 p.m. and the first and third Saturday of each month at 2 p.m. Programs shown during public shows vary, and members of the public should contact the Planetarium ahead of time to confirm what is on schedule.

The Planetarium can be reached at (334) 625-4799, online at www.troy.edu/planetarium or on Facebook at www.facebook.com/gayleplanetarium.