Partial eclipse Saturday looks forward to the total eclipse in 2024

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ROCHESTER, N.Y. – Everyone is excited for the total eclipse that’s coming in April of next year. But Saturday will be the “Ring of Fire” solar eclipse, and it’s possible that we’ll have a partial view of it. If the weather permits, we’ll be able to see 25% of the solar eclipse.

Other places across the country, especially around New Mexico, will have a full annular eclipse. Which means it will look like a ring of fire around the shadow of the moon, but what we see here will more sun than shadow.

“The RMSC loves sun, moon, earth, sky. Because we have Strasenburgh Planetarium and we’re celebrating across all three locations — at the Cumming Nature Center, at the Strasenburgh Planetarium and here at the Museum and Science Center,” Hillary Olson, president and CEO of Rochester Museum & Science Center, said.

Not only does the RMSC want people to experience science with them, but they want them to do it safely.

“We do have solar viewing glasses for sale and anyone can come and purchase them, and it’s really important for people to know that they cannot stare at the sun without using eye protection and sunglasses or anything else won’t do it. You have to use the solar viewing glasses and it’s just really important for people to be protecting their eyes while they’re looking at the sun and experiencing science,” Olson said.

But it’s possible, with the weather, that we won’t be able to see it.

“The weather’s a little iffy tomorrow, so we might not be able to see the eclipse from where we are because of cloud cover. So we will be celebrating by livestreaming a NASA livestream in several of our theaters, including in the planetarium,” Olson said.

All of this is a bit of a pre-game to the total eclipse happening on April 8 next year. Rochester will be a prime viewing spot. Don Jeffries, president and CEO of Visit Rochester, expects about 400,000 people to come to see it.

“But, you know, we’re really good at big events. You know, we just had the PGA and that was around a quarter of a million people. So, you know, it’s good. It’s great for the economy. The hotels are running packages,” Jeffries said.

The partial eclipse begins tomorrow at noon, and covers the maximum area at 1:13 p.m. And even if you don’t watch the eclipse Saturday at the RMSC, you can still buy the solar viewing glasses there, or find ways to look at it indirectly here.