Jupiter Ball

Morehead Planetarium and Science Center understands the importance of engaging students in the joy and excitement of science learning and discovery. Morehead also understands how important it is to ensure that all children have access to these experiences. That’s why proceeds from the Jupiter Ball, Morehead’s annual black-tie gala, go to underwriting field trips and outreach visits for students from some of the state’s most economically distressed schools. Additional funding is used for program development and expansion.

Since 2011, the Jupiter Ball Scholarship Program has made it possible for more than 15,000 schoolchildren from across North Carolina to receive the “Morehead experience.” Support our mission to make a difference in the educational life of a child. Your gift is an investment in the success of our schoolchildren today and will make an impact on their lives for years to come.

Event Overview

Held the Friday prior to Thanksgiving, the Jupiter Ball is an elegant affair. Honoring a leader from the fields of science and/or education, the Ball begins with a cocktail hour in the beautiful Genevieve B. Morehead Rotunda. A musical performance in the GlaxoSmithKline Fulldome Theater brings arts and science together in a magical setting. A gourmet dinner prepared by one Chapel Hill’s top chefs follows in the historic State Dining Room. Dancing and stargazing caps what is always a memorable evening.


Tickets go on sale in October and may be purchased online.


Morehead also welcomes those who would like to take the next step towards assuring that North Carolina schoolchildren have access to Morehead programming by sponsoring the ball. All sponsorships come with tickets. Cash sponsorships range from $1,200 to $10,000. Underwriting and in-kind sponsorships are also available. See the sponsorship levels and benefits. If you would like to become a sponsor for the next Jupiter Ball, contact us or pay online now.

This Year’s Ball

This year's ball will be held Friday, Nov. 21, 2014. Check for more information soon!

The Last Jupiter Ball

Thank you for your support of science education through your participation in The Jupiter Ball 2013! We wanted to share a look back at the evening with all of you.

Click here to see the 2013 Jupiter Ball photos on the Kim Crenshaw Photography website.
(password: jupiter)

Supernova Sponsors
Al and Marybeth Childers Joan Gillings
Sandra Henson Claude and Sarah Snow
Star Sponsors
Florence and Jim Peacock FOX 50-TV
Hatteras Discovery
& Drs. Joel and Christy Shaffer
Grand Patron Sponsors
Richard and Ford Hibbits Dr. Gerald L. and Mary Anne Klein
Ben and Beth Steelman Stephen and Sandra Rich
Underwriting Sponsors
97.9FM WCHL / Chapelboro.com
Chapel Hill Magazine
Durham Magazine
The Carolina Inn
Victoria Park Florist
Florence Peacock
A Better Image Printing
Kim Crenshaw Photography


  • Private foundation funds may not be used to make any gift, which would include Jupiter Ball tickets, when tangible benefits are being received.
  • Per IRS guidelines, donors may not “bifurcate” (split) payments and use foundation funds to pay for the tax-deductible portion and then pay for the benefit with personal funds.

Sponsorship Opportunities

To learn more about Jupiter Ball sponsorship opportunities, please click here.

Contact Information

To request an invitation or to become a Jupiter Ball supporter, please contact Jupiter Ball Coordinator Terry Gunnels at 919-843-3474 or jupiterball@unc.edu.

Jupiter Ball Committee

Sarah Snow, chair
Jennifer Boaz
Constance Bonczek
Chrys Bullard
Sarah Casey
Susan Preston Gunn
Terry Gunnels
Blaine Paxton Hall
Mary Anne Klein
Deborah Lekan
Heather Payne
Florence Peacock
Beth Steelman
Paige Zinn