Lookout Observatory was built in 2013 with a $546,000 donation from the Astronomy Club of Asheville, and was designed by Padgett & Freeman Architects of Asheville. It sits just below the ridge line on a hill at the north end of the UNC Asheville campus. The site’s benefits include nearby access for the Asheville community and the beautiful long range mountain views on the horizon.
This observatory will bring our solar system and the universe a whole lot closer to the residents of Asheville, Buncombe County and our region. There are many wonderful astronomical images available today, but nothing takes the place of observing a planet or other celestial objects directly in the telescope eyepiece.
-Bernard Arghiere, former President of the Astronomy Club of Asheville
The observatory offers opportunities to:
- Greater Asheville community members and school children who attend public outreach events offering science education and astronomical observation;
- Advanced UNC Asheville students performing guided research alongside Department of Physics faculty;
- Members of the Astronomy Club of Asheville, a 501(c)3 non-profit educational organization, exploring the night sky and sharing their dedication to helping community members of all ages and interest levels understand and enjoy astronomy;
- UNC Asheville introductory Astronomy students who experience course concepts first-hand utilizing the observatory’s laboratory capabilities.