USA 2017Where to watch

Five organised eclipse viewing events with astronomers on hand

When do I take off my eclipse glasses? What will I see? Ask an astronomer.

When is Totality? When should you take your eclipse glasses off? When should you put them back on again? If you’ve never witnessed a Total Solar Eclipse before, getting to grips with the timetable for your exact location can be difficult. The partial phases before and after can also be dangerous to look at unless you know what you’re doing. So visiting an eclipse observation event on August 21 is a great idea; scientists will answer all of your questions and you’ll enjoy the experience without any effort. Here are five great events you can get tickets for.

1 – OSU150 Space Grant Festival: A Total Eclipse Experience, Oregon State University, Corvallis, Oregon

Celebrating Oregon State’s 150th anniversary and the university’s lead role for the Oregon NASA Space Grant, which provides education, research and public outreach to inspire the next generation of explorers. From rockets, robots and meteorites to music, art and a movie, all events are on campus and open to the public, with free parking. Tickets will be available for $15 each.

2 – St Joseph, Missouri

Front Page Science will be conducting a huge public observing event at Rosecrans Memorial Airport in St. Joseph, Missouri. From there, you can experience 2 minutes and 39 seconds of totality, only 1 second short of the maximum time possible. Astronomers will be on hand to explain what’s happening and lots of safely filtered telescopes you can view through. Free.

3 – The Lowell Observatory Solar Eclipse Experience, Madras High School, Madras, Oregon

Lowell Observatory astronomers and educators are traveling to Madras, Oregon. Starting on Sunday the 20th and continuing through the evening of the 22nd, we will give programs, present hands-on activities, hold star parties and, of course, view the entire solar eclipse, from the first moment the moon covers the Sun, through totality, and until the moon finally moves off the Sun. Madras High School will serve as our venue, with both daytime and evening celestial viewing taking place at the football field and programs presented inside the adjacent Madras Performing Arts Center. $10 entry.

4 – Solar Eclipse Festival, Tallulah Gorge State Park, Tallulah Falls, Georgia

The event will take place in the helicopter pad (field) next to the campground. Schools are encouraged to bring students to watch this event. There will be different stations set up to make your own viewing instrument as well as instruments set up for people to view the eclipse. There will be activities to participate in while we are waiting for the eclipse. Experts will be on hand to answer questions about the eclipse.

5 – Eclipse Extravaganza, Roper Mountain Science Center, Greenville, South Carolina

Programs on safe viewing of the eclipse, special observation sites with astronomers assisting visitors on Monday, tours of the Daniel Observatory and historic 23” Alvan Clark Refractor Telescope, the 8th largest refractor in the country. Tickets Saturday and Sunday are $10 age 4 and up. Monday $25 age 4 and up. Roper Mountain members receive a $5 discount for this special event.

Photo credit: Mark Margolis / Rainbow Symphony (via AAS)