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Funding stories

Auckland Observatory & Planetarium Trust

Focus area: Community Support
Auckland Observatory & Planetarium Trust

Stardome has been connecting Aucklanders to the stars for 50 years, opening New Zealand’s first and largest planetarium at its One Tree Hill Domain site in 1997, with funding contributed by ASB Community Trust (which became Foundation North in 2015).

With a mission ‘to share knowledge of space in ways that inspire, challenge and educate’, Stardome aims to be considered a must-see visitor experience by Aucklanders, where each visitor is treated as a star. Interactive displays and exhibits communicating astronomical and space information dominate the foyer of the planetarium, enabling visitors to trace the history of the science of astronomy before immersing themselves in the planetarium or viewing the night sky through telescopes. New stand-out displays, a Lego History of Spacecraft and Space Tracker (an interactive bank of computers), were recently installed in the foyer to complement and enhance the visitor experience.

“Our mission is to encourage curious minds in both young and old through the exploration of space and astronomy. These new displays were made possible with funding from Foundation North and help visitors connect with the wonders and mysteries of space in a fun, interactive and contemporary way.”
- David Houldsworth, CEO of Stardome Observatory & Planetarium.