Frequently Asked Questions

Why adopt a star from Orlando Science Center?

Orlando Science Center strives to provide science for everyone by creating opportunities for experiential science learning and promoting science literacy. Although there are many ways for you, your family or your company to support Orlando Science Center, the Adopt-A-Star program helps you celebrate an important event or honor someone special while becoming a friend to Orlando Science Center. Your charitable gift supports our mission, making a difference in the lives of Central Florida students, teachers and families for years to come.

Will I be able to see the star I have adopted?

Yes. Some stars may require telescopes for viewing depending on your location and the time of year. Most are visible using just your eyes. Orlando Science Center Astronomers can assist with any questions you may have locating and viewing your adopted star.

What does the Adopt-A-Star Certificate say?

Each Adopt-A-Star Certificate is personalized and includes; your name (or a recognition name), your star’s official International Astronomical Union (IAU) designation, proper and common names, distance from Earth, constellation, magnitude and spectral type. You will also receive educational information and a star map to help locate your star.

How long is the adoption period?

The adoption date is for a period of one year. You may renew as often as you like. Many people choose to participate in the Adopt-A-Star program to commemorate a birth date, marriage date, anniversary, special holiday - you name it!

How are stars chosen for adoption?

Stars seen at night appear to have a wide range of brightness and were first put on a quantitative scale by the Greek astronomer Hipparchus around 130 BC. He arranged the visible stars in order of apparent brightness on a scale which ran from 1 to 6, with the brightest stars ranked “1”. The ranks were called magnitudes; a star was said to be of the first magnitude, third magnitude, and so forth.

Astronomers today continue to rate the magnitude of a star with a scale that gives brighter stars a low number and dim stars a higher number. All of the stars available for adoption from Orlando Science Center have a magnitude of 1, 2 or 3. Generally speaking, from a populated urban area, stars of magnitude 3 are usually visible to the eye without the aid of a telescope.

After I place my order, how long until I receive my Adopt-A-Star packet?

Packets are shipped in the order they are received. Depending on your location, you should receive your Adopt-A-Star packet in approximately one to two weeks. You can authorize an additional charge for United States Postal Service (USPS) priority delivery or FedEx to ensure quicker delivery.

Can certificates say "in memory of" or "in honor of"?

Absolutely. You may also wish to include a personal message.

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777 E. Princeton Street • Orlando, Florida 32803 • Phone: 407.514.2000 • TTY: 407.514.2005 • Toll Free: 888.OSC.4FUN • Email:
  Orlando Science Center is supported by United Arts of Central Florida, host of and the collaborative Campaign for the Arts.
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