Did you know that Middle Tennessee is in the direct viewing path of a total solar eclipse this year on August 21? The last time there was a total solar eclipse in North America was in 1979, and the last time one had a coast to coast path was 1918. This Solar eclipse is going to be a big deal!
A little background information first. A solar eclipse becomes visible on earth, when the moon passes between the earth and the sun. The moon blocks out the light that normally reaches the surface of the earth creating the solar eclipse.
How to See the Solar Eclipse in Tennessee
The best viewing areas, for Tennessee, will be in Middle Tennessee. Stretching from Clarksville, through Nashville, Lebanon, and Murfreesboro heading southeast through the state. Many of these cities will be hosting special events. Nashville, Clarksville, Lebanon, and Murfreesboro City Parks will all have great viewing areas.
How to Safely View
First thing, DO NOT try to view a partial solar eclipse or partial or annular phases of a total eclipse with the naked eye. The only time it is considered safe to view an eclipse without eye protection is during the brief moment of totality when the moon completely blocks the sun. Viewing a solar eclipse without proper eye protection may result in permanent eye damage or blindness. For more information about safe viewing check out NASA or AAS’s websites.
The cheapest way to see the effects of a solar eclipse safely is a pinhole viewer. These can be made at home from simple supplies you likely already have: cardboard, duct tape, aluminum foil, and white paper.
Another inexpensive method is to purchase glasses designed specifically for viewing solar eclipses. If you decide to do this make certain that the glasses meet the safety requirements for viewing the sun directly.
If you are looking for something a little more robust, they also make Plastic Eclipse Glasses with a wrap around frame. These fit a little closer to your face, and may provide a little more protection from accidental exposure to the direct sunlight.
Solar Eclipse Events
Adventure Science Center
The Adventure Science Center will be hosting Music City Solar Eclipse. Visit the Special Events section of their website for more details.
Stones River National Battlefield
On their Facebook Page, Stones River National Battlefield said they will be holding a viewing event. Details are not available yet, but follow them on Facebook for the latest updates. This will be a great place to view the eclipse from.
Tennessee State Parks
More events to be added as they are announced!!!
If for some reason you can’t see this eclipse, the next one in America will be April 8, 2024. Unfortunately, the Path of Totality will not pass through Tennessee. You will have to travel to see it. The next one that actually passes over Nashville will be around 500 years from now, so don’t wait around on that.