New Castle, DE – A once-in-a-lifetime event will take place on Monday, August 21 when portions of North America experience a total eclipse of the sun. Delaware will observe a partial eclipse during the event and New Castle County Libraries are helping residents get in on the action with a series of educational programs and viewing parties. Residents are invited to participate in these programs to learn about the astronomical phenomenon and how to view the eclipse safely, get solar eclipse basics, make a pinhole viewer projector to view the eclipse and enjoy music inspired by the event.“There are bright days ahead for New Castle County, but next Monday won’t be one of them!,” County Executive Matthew Meyer said. “Please join our County libraries over the next week for fun and educational eclipse-related programming that inspires curiosity and a love of science.”
When to observe the eclipse
In New Castle County, the start of the partial eclipse will begin at 1:20 pm. The maximum peak of the eclipse will be observed at 2:44 pm when 76% of the sun will be obscured by the moon, and the end of the partial eclipse will occur at 4:01 pm.
Viewing the eclipse safety
Looking directly at the sun during an eclipse is unsafe and can cause permanent eye damage! Even sunglasses do not offer sufficient protection from the sun’s harmful rays. Residents are encouraged to avoid looking at the sun without special eclipse glasses or handheld solar viewers. The eclipse can also be viewed indirectly with a pinhole camera which can be made with common household items. Learn how to make a pinhole camera with directions found on the NASA website at https://www.jpl.nasa.gov/edu/learn/project/how-to-make-a-pinhole-camera/ and The Franklin Institute website at https://www.fi.edu/summer-of-space/eclipse/pinhole-camera. Get additional eclipse viewing safety tips from NASA at https://eclipse2017.nasa.gov/safety.
Celebrate the eclipse with New Castle County libraries
Mark your calendars now for eclipse-related educational and viewing parties at New Castle County libraries through August 21. Please note: A limited number of eclipse viewing glasses will be available at these programs on a first-come first-served basis. Click here to get library branch street addresses.
Wednesday, August 16
Astral Harp Music: Total Solar Eclipse at the Newark Library
Enjoy an evening of arranged harp music set to a slide show of astrophotography to celebrate the upcoming eclipse. Music is composed and arranged by Janet Witman. Slideshow is by Kevin Witman. Sponsored by the Friends of the Newark Free Library.
Thursday, August 17
What is an Eclipse? at Garfield Park Lending Library
Discuss the impending solar eclipse with NASA Solar System Ambassador Terence Blanch. Learn about what an eclipse is, the types of eclipses and the science surrounding them. Learn how to safely observe the solar eclipse. Sponsored by Moore Foundation, research Corporation, Google and NASA.
Monday, August 21
Solar Eclipse Viewing at the Kirkwood Library
Make a pinhole viewer projector to safely view the solar eclipse.
1:10 – 3:30 pm
Solar Eclipse Day Party at the Garfield Park Lending Library
Patrons will be able to safety observe what has been called the “Astronomical Event of the Decade!”
Eclipse Viewing Party at the Brandywine Hundred Library
Celebrate this amazing celestial event at the library with stories, experiments and crafts.