Sunday, August 22, 2010

Jack Horkheimer (1938-2010)

An astronomical icon passed away on August 20 - Jack Horkheimer, the Star Gazer.  He was director of the Miami Planetarium and had a syndicated weekly astronomy program on PBS since 1976. 

A bit of trivia - the show was originally called Star Hustler but was changed to Star Gazer in 1997 because, in the age of the Internet, search engines like Google prominently returned links to Hustler magazine when kids were searching for Star Hustler!

Horkheimer would always open his five-minute show with "Greetings, greetings fellow star gazers" and signed off with "Keep looking up."  He would discuss what was interesting and visible in the sky that week.  Despite his generally goofy demeanor and cheesy sets, his enthusiasm for astronomy undoubtably influenced generations of kids into developing an interest in the night sky.

Click to view one of his last programs.

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