As if you haven’t heard, on Monday, August 21, there will be a total solar eclipse. All over the United States, people will turn to the sky to watch the moon totally eclipse the sun for the first time in 99 years. Central Florida and Orlando will experience the eclipse at 85% totality. We’ve compiled this guide on where to watch the solar eclipse in Orlando. There are many viewing events and pre-eclipse info sessions scheduled in the area.
What’s a total solar eclipse? For just a few minutes, the moon will pass between Earth and the sun, completely blocking the sun’s light — bringing temporary darkness to the day. (Depending on where you live, the coverage will vary.) In any case, it’s not to be missed, given it’s such a rare occurrence. It’s the first time since 1918 that a total solar eclipse will cross the entire continental U.S.
Practice safe eclipse viewing. Even though the sun and its brightness will be partially blocked by the moon, viewing the eclipse is still just as dangerous as looking directly at the sun on a normal day. Make sure you use special eclipse viewing glasses or attend one of the events below for a safe viewing environment. Read more on how to view a solar eclipse safely at eclipse.aas.org/eye-safety.
TOTAL SOLAR ECLIPSE VIEWING LOCATIONS
Dr. Phillips Center
August 21, 1 p.m. – 4 p.m.
Seneff Arts Plaza
Join Orlando Science Center staff for free eclipse glasses (while supplies last), telescope viewing and solar-themed demos and activities. Food trucks on-site, concession open; and you can take a break from the heat in the lobby.
Winter Park: Central Park West Meadow
August 21, 1 p.m. – 4 p.m.
150 West Morse Blvd.
Hosted by Orlando Science Center staff. Arrive around 12:30 p.m. to ensure you receive free eclipse glasses.
August 21, 2:30 p.m. – 5 p.m.
1014 Miami Springs Drive, Longwood
Free entry, $3 Kona Brewing drafts and free eclipse glasses
Emil Buehler Planetarium at Seminole State College
August 21, 12 p.m. – 4:30 p.m. with point of maximum eclipse at 2:15 p.m.
Viewing area: front sidewalks of the Automotive Technology building on the main campus of Seminole State College. They will have telescopes and binoculars on hand as well as presentations to learn more about the event.
Solar Eclipse Viewing Parties Orange County Libraries
August 21, 1:27 p.m.
Branches include: Alafaya, Chicksaw, Eatonville, Herndon, South Trail, Southwest, Washington Park, West Oaks, Windermere and Winter Garden.
Maitland Library Viewing Party
August 21 at noon
Celebrate at all Seminole County Libraries
August 21, 1:30 p.m. – 4:30 p.m.
Central Florida Zoo & Botanical Gardens
Admission to the zoo will be reduced to $10 after 1 p.m. on August 21 in order for guests to view the eclipse. Bring your own glasses!
The Zoo will start to see the effects of the eclipse beginning at 1:20 p.m., maximum effect around 2:50 p.m., and it will end around 4:15 p.m.
VIEWING WITH PURCHASE
Orlando Science Center
August 21, 1 p.m. to 4 p.m.
With general admission, guests will be able to view the solar eclipse safely with special glasses and/or using the solar telescope filters; make phone filters to capture great photos of the eclipse; see solar eclipse demos and presentations; and more! Kids will enjoy getting creative with solar-themed crafts and hands-on sensory activities.
Admission: free for members, $20.95 for adults, $18.95 for seniors and students, and $14.95 for kids 3 – 11.
Kennedy Space Center
August 21, 11 a.m. – 4:30 p.m.
Viewing area: Rocket Garden
With your purchase of admission to Kennedy Space Center ($50 adults, $40 for kids 3-11), you can watch the eclipse with space experts while wearing complimentary NASA-approved viewing glasses.
FOR THE KIDS
August 21, 12 p.m. – 4 p.m.
Watch NASA’s live feed of the celestial occurrence. Kids can craft their own honorary eclipse glasses, create a retractable telescope and even see their coloring creation bask in the glow of the eclipse. Safe viewing glasses not provide.
$22.99 at the door, $19.99 online, kids under 3 are free
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Free museum days in Orlando
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