Welcome to the UMSL Schwartz Observatory Website. Located on the campus of UMSL, the observatory is used for astronomical research and for public education. It houses a 16" Meade LX200 telescope and two portable 8" Celestron telescopes.  The telescope can be used for imaging or spectroscopy with an SBIG ST-8 CCD camera.

observatory at night

Public Astronomy at UMSL

Sponsored in part by the NASA Space Grant Consortium 

Here at UMSL, we have an active public outreach program at our observatory and the planetarium.  From February through November each year, we host open houses. During these popular events, the public is invited to visit the observatory where a student or volunteer will point the telescope at various objects of interest, point out constellations, and answer general astronomy questions.


Due to Covid-19 all 2020 Open House events are cancelled. Please check this webpage for updates. We hope to resume the events and to see you all soon!

2020 Public Open House Schedule
 Printable Pdf

Date Start Time (CDT) Objects to View*

February 29

7:00pm (CST)

Venus, Orion Nebula, Pleiades, Andromeda Galaxy

March 28


Venus, Orion Nebula, Pleiades, Beehive Cluster, Mizar/Alcor

May 2

Spring Astronomy Day


Venus, Beehive Cluster, Mizar/Alcor, M3 Globular Cluster

May 30


Mercury, M13 Globular Cluster, Epsilon Lyra Double-Double

June 27


M13, Epsilon Lyra Double-Double, Ring Nebula, Albireo

July 25


Jupiter, Saturn, M13, Albireo, Dumbbell Nebula, Ring Nebula

August 22


Jupiter, Saturn, M13, Albireo, Ring Nebula, Helix Nebula

September 26
Fall Astronomy Day 

Cancelled due to Covid-19

Jupiter, Saturn, M13, Albireo, Ring Nebula, Andromeda Galaxy


October 24

Cancelled due to Covid-19

Jupiter, Saturn, Mars, Andromeda Galaxy, M13, Ring Nebula

*All Open House sessions will include viewing of the first quarter Moon, along with additional deep sky objects such as visible nebulae and galaxies.

For up-to-date information on the Open Houses, cancellations due to weather, or other special events in the sky, call the Skywatch Hotline: (314) 516-5706. This number has a message describing the next open house. After 6 p.m. on scheduled open house days, the message will be changed if there is a cancellation.

If you have a large group (30 or more), a special open house may be scheduled for your group. Contact the Department of Physics & Astronomy at (314) 516-5931 and they will point you to the right person.

Join us on Facebook!


The Observatory has moved to a new site located on the North Campus of the University of Missouri-St. Louis, which is in Normandy, MO. If you need more information please call the observatory at (314) 516-5706.

From I-170

Take I-170 to Exit 6, Natural Bridge Road. There should be a green sign marked "University" which points which way to turn on Natural Bridge. (From South I-170 it is a right.) Follow Natural Bridge past Hanley Road, go through one more stop light and turn left at the second stop light after Hanley Road (the main entrance to North Campus) onto University Drive. Follow the road as it curves until it hits University Boulevard and turn right. Turn left on Rosedale Drive. The Fine Arts Building is up the hill on the left.  Be warned: The lights will be out around the observatory, so there may be some difficulty seeing it in the dark. 

From I-70

From I-70, travel east on Florissant Road (also known as University Boulevard). Turn left on Rosedale Drive, which is across from UMSL's Parking and Transportation Building. The Fine Arts Building is up the hill on the left.  Be warned: The lights will be out around the observatory, so there may be some difficulty in seeing the observatory in the darkness.


The observatory (building 35) is located just next to the softball field in the map.