Stephen F. Austin State University

Special Events

Spring 2016 Special Events


October 11 Wind Ensemble Turner Auditorium 7:30
October 18 Wind Symphony & Symphonic Band Turner Auditorium 7:30
October 25 Choral Union and Women's Choir Cole 7:30
November 21 Wind Ensemble Turner 7:30
November 29 Wind Symphony & Symphonic Band Turner 7:30
December 2 Percussion in the Pines Cole 7:30


Fall schedule to be announced.

Observatory & Planetarium

You can only sign up for one event at a time. However, if the observatory event is canceled due to bad weather, then you can sign up for the planetarium event.

Discover one of SFA's best kept secrets.
Visit the largest teaching astronomical observatory in the state of Texas.
See the largest reflecting telescope to be found in America between Cambridge, Massachusetts,
and McDonald Observatory in West Texas.
Learn some astronomy, one of the original disciplines taught in western universities.
View stars, planets, constellations, nebulae, and more.
Be able to impress your friends with your knowledge of the night sky.

Where is the observatory?

It is about 12 miles north of campus.

What will we see?

1. A group of eight-inch telescopes will be set up for our use (eight-inch refers to the size of the reflecting mirror inside the telescope). Assistance in using the telescopes will be provided my members of the Society of Physics Students. We can expect to see galactic and globular clusters, external galaxies, and planetary nebulae.

2. One of SFA's professional astronomers will direct a constellation tour. We will become acquainted with features of the autumn sky and things to watch for in the near future. Sky highlights will include the Milky Way, the Summer Triangle, and the constellation/mythology quintet of Pegasus, Perseus, Cassiopeia, Cepheus, and Andromeda.

3. An advanced undergraduate astronomy student will be running the 16-, and 18-inch telescopes. These telescopes, controlled by computer, are connected to a video camera that permits several people to simultaneously view objects from distant space. Many visitors find this the highlight of the tour.

4. One of SFA's professional astronomers will explain the operation of the 41-inch telescope. This telescope, built entirely by SFA personnel, is the largest reflecting telescope to be found in America west of Cambridge, Massachusetts, and east of McDonald Observatory in West Texas.

How long will the tour take?

The tour will take about two hours. That includes a 30-minute bus ride to the observatory, an hour at the observatory, and a 30-minute bus ride back to campus.

What about the weather?

Be prepared. The observatory is not heated or cooled. Watch the weather forecast for the predicted low temperature. Wear appropriate clothes for cold weather and please bring a coat and gloves.

In case of rain or heavy clouds, call 468-2188 or check the SFA 101 web site (calendar) to see if the trip has been cancelled or rescheduled because of weather.

When will we go?
Bus departure times from Wilson Drive bus stop-
Monday, November 1, 2016
7:00 p.m.
8:00 p.m.
9:00 p.m.

Anything else?

The SFA Observatory and the buses are drug and alcohol free areas. That means no smoking or drinking. Also, do not use insect repellant sprays or any other kinds of aerosols on the observatory grounds.

Access to the observatory is by bus only. No personal cars may be used.

All persons riding the bus need to sign in with the SFA 101 staff person present.


No shows scheduled for the spring.

The planetarium is located in room 100 of the Math building. That's building 50 near the library on this Campus Map. Planetarium shows are not canceled due to bad weather.

We hope to see you at one of our exciting events!!

Tunnel of Oppression

No tours scheduled for spring.

The Lumberjack Cultural Association (LCA) and the Office of Multicultural Affairs (OMA) present the Tunnel of Oppression. The Tunnel of Oppression is an interactive museum which spotlights different types of oppression through interactive theatre and multimedia presentations. In the past the event has shed light on issues ranging from human trafficking, genocide and suicide to name a few. The Tunnel of Oppression is a very enlightening and eye-opening experience that should not be missed.