The LSU Department of Physics & Astronomy will host an Astronomy Night on Thursday from 5:30 p.m. until 9 p.m., in Charles B. Coates Hall and in the Landolt Observatory in nearby Nicholson Hall.

The event is free and open to the public. Interested attendees must RSVP at

The night’s festivities will kick off in Room 152 of Coates Hall with a presentation from physics professor Greg Guzik, titled “Ballooning To the Edge of Space for Scientists and Students,” in which he will discuss LSU’s high-altitude-balloon-based research, including student participation.

At 6:45 p.m., visitors will have a picnic dinner in the LSU Quad.

Later, at 7:30 p.m., there will be a hands-on physics demonstration in Room 109 of Nicholson Hall, with devices such as the Ruben’s Tube, Tesla Coil, Van de Graaff generator and liquid nitrogen, which will be used to create a surprise treat for the attendees.

At 8:15 p.m., visitors will move into the Landolt Observatory on top of Nicholson Hall, where they will have an opportunity to view the Moon, the planet Saturn, the International Space Station and other activity in space, with the assistance of LSU astronomy faculty and students. There will also be a Ham Radio demonstration by physics faculty members.

For more information, contact Kenneth “Kip” Matthews of the LSU Department of Physics & Astronomy at (225) 578-2740.