Adler Planetarium and Astronomy Museum

The Adler Planetarium and Astronomy Museum — America’s First Planetarium — was founded in 1930 by Chicago business leader Max Adler. The museum is home to three full-size theaters, extensive space science exhibitions, and one of the world’s most important antique astronomical instrument collections on display.

The Adler’s Galaxy Wall is the largest, most complete view of our galaxy — the Milky Way — ever made.


  • Telescopes: Through the Looking Glass presents the technology used to gather information about the Universe. Featuring some of the world’s most important telescopes and one-of-a-kind, hands-on interactive exhibits, it explores the extraordinary beauty and technology of these amazing instruments and the objects they enable us to discover.
  • Shoot for the Moon at the Adler! This permanent exhibition highlights the exciting stories of space exploration and America’s bold plans to return to the Moon.
  • CyberSpace features computer-based, interactive exhibitions and up-to-date information on astronomy.
  • Our Solar System is much more than a star and eight planets. Explore the many worlds — planets, moons, dwarf planets, comets, and asteroids — that orbit the Sun.  Drive a rover that’s examining the surface of Mars or shoot projectiles into a soft surface to size up the craters they leave behind.

Did you know?

  • The Adler opened May 12, 1930, Max Adler’s 64th birthday.
  • 1,387 separate pieces of glass make up the Upper Level of the Sky Pavilion.
  • The Adler is a 12-sided polygon (dodecahedron) building made of St. Cloud (Minnesota) Rainbow Granite. The granite from the 1929 construction and the 1999 Sky Pavilion both came from the same vein in a Cold Spring, Minnesota, quarry and were a perfect match. The dome is copper. The front doors are bronze and nickel bronze set with beveled glass.  The setting sun shines through the beveled glass, which refracts the rays, creating a rainbow effect in the Main Lobby.


Adler Planetarium

Article written by Sarah Wyland

Sarah Wyland
Sarah never gets in trouble for being on Facebook and Instagram at work, because its her job. As social media manager, she gets to tell the stories of travelers, teachers, and interesting places. Other titles she enjoys include dog mom to Knox, barre instructor, Crossfit athlete, avid reader, and world traveler.