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Show packs in history, science and the Bible
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No need to stand out in the cold to enjoy an evening under the stars.

Bask in the warmth of North Georgia College & State University's Coleman Planetarium as you are taken on a guided tour exploring the possible scientific explanations of the mysterious celestial event described in the book of Matthew.

"We normally don't have public shows during the Christmas break," said Dr. Joe Jones, who oversees NGCSU's astronomy facilities, including the planetarium and observatory. "So this is the first year in many years that we have done a Star of Bethlehem show."

The show will last approximately 50 minutes and is planned for 7 p.m. and again at 8 p.m. Friday, Jones said.

"(This) will be the last special Star of Bethlehem show," Jones said. "We will be resuming our regular open program shows (beginning) Friday, Jan. 7 during the spring semester."

Jones said Western astronomers have speculated and researched the Star of Bethlehem since before the time of Kepler.

"Our show presents many of the possibilities and focuses on the latest ideas on the nature of the Star," he said. "(There's) lots of good astronomy as well as history contained in the program, and we think it is an enjoyable show for those interested in the topic."

After the 7 p.m. planetarium show, weather permitting, the observatory will be open by 8:30 p.m. for viewing. Directions to the observatory will be given following each program.

If the observatory, which is outdoors, is opened after the show, visitors should dress warmly.

"If clear, visitors will be able to observe some of the objects that may have been the Star," Jones said.

The planetarium doors will open at 6:30 p.m. The shows are free.