Four years ago today, June 25 2005, was our Palomar Observatory Open House. An estimated 4,000 people came to visit Palomar Observatory in just one day.
The lines were epic.
It was immensely gratifying to see so many people know that there are so many people that are interested in the observatory and astronomy. As you might imagine, we are a bit hesitant to hold another such event, as it completely overwhelmed our resources (especially with regard to parking and bathrooms).
Instead we now have a regular program of public tours on Saturdays and Sundays. This makes the situation easier for everyone involved and we still have thousands of visitors each year that get to experience a tour of the Hale Telescope.