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Charles W. Brown Planetarium announces preparations for total solar eclipse

MUNCIE, Ind. — Monday morning, Ball State welcomed many visitors into the largest planetarium in Indiana to learn about the upcoming total solar eclipse happening on April 8.

For the first time in 100 years, Muncie residents do not need to leave their backyard to view the total solar eclipse. Dayna Thomas, planetarium director, talked about how this rare event will not be seen again in Muncie until the year 2099. This eclipse will reach complete totality , which is different than the partial eclipse that happened seven years ago.

Ball State is encouraging student engagement by hosting free events around campus the weekend before the eclipse occurs. The university has ordered over 70,000 pairs of safety glasses to promote the community to witness this once-in-a-lifetime event.

The total solar eclipse is estimated to begin at 3:07 p.m. ET and will last just under four minutes. Local professors are taking this opportunity to promote the interest of science in the community. Tom McConnell, a professor of biology, spoke on the topic.

“Our students get an opportunity with these eclipses to share with the general public, not just a group of students in a classroom, and get to see just how engaging science is with an event like this," McConnell said.

Some events happening the weekend prior to the eclipse involve planetarium speakers discussing the solar system, and a station by the university greenhouse to learn how to view the eclipse using shadows.

To find out more about how to view the eclipse and how to get involved please visit the city's eclipse website.