Catch the Celestial Spectacle: Free Solar Eclipse Viewing at West Chester University!

Solar EclipseSolar Eclipse - November 13, 2012 by NASA Goddard Photo and Video is licensed under CC-BY 2.0

WEST CHESTER, PA — Get ready for an astronomical treat! West Chester University’s Mather Planetarium invites you to witness the awe-inspiring solar eclipse on Monday, April 8. This free public event promises an afternoon of cosmic discovery from 1 to 4 p.m. in the S lot parking lot (850 South New Street, West Chester), directly across from the tennis courts. With complimentary parking available in the Q lot below Farrell Stadium (855 South New Street), there’s no reason to miss out on this celestial spectacle.

The first 750 lucky attendees will receive special eclipse glasses, ensuring a safe viewing experience. Remember, looking directly at the sun without proper protection can damage your eyes, so these glasses are a must-have for anyone eager to gaze upon the eclipse. Additionally, the university will provide telescopes equipped for safe solar observation, offering a closer look at this rare event.

Karen Schwarz, WCU professor of earth and space science and director of the Mather Planetarium, offers some insight into the day: “Depending on the weather, the eclipse may not be noticeable if it’s cloudy. However, with clear skies, you might feel a slight drop in temperature during the eclipse. It’s a unique experience where temperature changes will be more noticeable than light pattern changes.”

The eclipse will kick off in West Chester when the moon starts its dance across the sun at 2:06 p.m., reaching its peak coverage of 90 percent by 3:22 p.m. Don’t miss this opportunity to see the sun in a new light, as this will be the last total solar eclipse visible from the continental United States until 2044.

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Professor Marc Gagné and students from the earth and space science department, along with members of the Astronomy Club, will be on hand to enrich your experience. They’ll staff activity tables designed to engage and educate visitors of all ages about the wonders of our universe.

Please note that the event is subject to cancellation in case of cloudy or inclement weather. Stay updated by checking the Mather Planetarium website or Facebook page on the day of the event.

Don’t let this once-in-a-generation event pass you by. Mark your calendars, grab your friends and family, and join West Chester University for an unforgettable afternoon under the sky. Let’s share in the marvel of the cosmos together!

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