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Observatory

Observatory

Gorky Park opens the new season of the public Observatory.

Working hours

During April Observatory will work only in weekend days (Saturday and Sunday) from 11 a.m. till 11 p.m. After April the Observatory will be open daily for public visiting. 

Ticket price

Ticket - 200 rub., special rate ticket  - 100 rub. 

Excurisions in Russian are also available but only for group with at least 4 people. 

History

The first astronomical pavilion was opened in the Park of Culture and Recreation in 1929. According to early maps, it was located roughly in the same place as the current observatory. The building of the observatory was part of a complex which also included a sundial, a statue of the earth globe, armillary sphere, the stage, reading stands and billboards. Gorky Park Observatory was equipped with a five-inch Zeiss refractor telescope.

In the late ‘50s and early ‘60s several summer astronomical pavilions were opened across city parks. The staff mostly consisted of the Planetarium workers and students of astronomical studies. Amateur telescopes were installed outside, and everyone could join in the observation of celestial bodies, as well as could get advice from the on-duty astronomer. Later, some astronomical pavilions were turned into small observatories with fixed telescopes. These became known as the people's observatories, because access to it was open to all. When the weather was good and the sky clear, astronomical observations were held for the public.

The construction of the Mass Observatory met the basic provisions of the master plan of Gorky Park developed in 1950s. The mandate of the park presupposed creating of a unique institution combining extensive cultural and educational work with the providing leisure conditions for the working class. The priorities of the park included combining relaxation with the acquisition of knowledge and appreciation of diverse cultural needs in the field of politics, science, technology, art, contributing to the scale and diversity of cultural activities. Only two of those observatories to date - the ones in Gorky Park and in Sokolniki Park. People’s Observatory in Gorky Park remained closed to visitors for more than twenty years. In September 2012, it opened the doors again, now boasting a new powerful telescope and automatic retractable dome.

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