Has the state of partisan politics left you feeling down? Is climate change making you feel anxious? Turn that existential frown upside down and make your way to the University of Saskatchewan Observatory, where you will find yourself pondering the meaning of life as you gaze longingly at the night sky.
Even if you’re not existentially inclined, there is still a lot to learn and experience at the Observatory, which is open to the public every Saturday night and is sure to provide a unique experience — especially for first time stargazers. The cost is nil, but private tours can be booked for a small fee.
The Observatory was constructed in 1928 over a period of two years, and has remained at its location at 108 Wiggins Road ever since. Its main telescope is a three metre long refracting telescope with a six inch diameter lens, housed in the signature metallic dome. During business hours, this telescope is used to view various celestial objects throughout the year, weather permitting.
In addition to the three metre telescope, the Observatory also contains a multitude of other assorted telescopes, an Adopt a Star program and a small astronomy museum in the basement. The museum features a tour of the solar system, astronomical exhibits and various informational displays.
The world may seem divided now more than ever, but a quick trip to the Observatory is a surefire way to refresh your cosmic perspective. Even if you aren’t looking for a groundbreaking experience, it’s still worth a visit — you get to see cool space stuff, and that’s more than anyone can ask for.
For more information, visit physics.usask.ca/observatory. Public hours change on a monthly basis. November hours are 7–9:30 p.m.
Photos and text: Jeremy Britz / Photo Editor