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6 solar eclipse viewing parties for kids

It won’t happen again for many years, so you might want to make the most of the upcoming solar eclipse.Next Monday, August 21st, the moon will pass between the earth and the sun, creating a total solar eclipse for many viewers across the United States of America.

Those of us viewing from Milwaukee will be able to see a partial eclipse of 83% at 1:18 p.m. The entire show will last from 11:53 to 2:40.

You must use NASA-approved glasses if you’re planning to view the solar eclipse. (No, dark sunglasses cannot replace eclipse glasses.) Many of the events listed below offer free or inexpensive eclipse glasses while supplies last.

You can also see a reflection of the eclipse using the pinhole projection strategy.

Here are some kid-friendly videos that a explain what a solar eclipse is.

Enjoy the solar eclipse at any of the parties listed below. Do you know of another event? Let us know about it!

1. Milwaukee Public Museum Solar Eclipse Party

Monday, August 21st

10:00 – 3:00

Location: Milwaukee Public MuseumCosts: Displays, telescope-viewing, and eclipse live feeds FREE / Planetarium Programs free with Museum AdmissionAdditional costs may apply for Dome Theater shows

Activities include educational displays, eclipse demos, live feeds of the eclipse from NASA, special telescopes for observation the sun, Dome Theater shows and Planetarium programs, and eclipse glasses on sale for $2.00 while supplies last.

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2. UWM Manfred Olson Planetarium Solar Eclipse Viewing Party

The Manfred Olson Planetarium invites everyone in the community to come to their official, NASA-sponsored viewing event to experience the partial solar eclipse that will be visible from 11 a.m. until 3 p.m. on August 21, 2017.

You can also see “The Sun’s Disappearing Act”, exploring the science, history, and culture of solar eclipses. The show will be playing at 11:30 a.m. and 2:30 p.m. on the day of the eclipse. The Sun’s Disappearing Act will also be performed on Fridays on July 21, 28, August 4, 11, 18 and Thursday, August 17 from 7 p.m. to 8 p.m.

Special viewing glasses will be available for purchase for safely seeing the solar eclipse. Enjoy live music from The Belle Weathers; a raffle with cash and gift certificate prizes; food and beverages from Meat on the Street (for purchase); lawn games; a bounce house; and more. Bring your own picnic materials and games. RSVPs are not required. A $5 donation is suggested.

In case of inclement weather, the event will be held in and around the UW-Milwaukee (UWM) Planetarium in the Physics building where livestreams of the eclipse will be shown.

The celebration will be held on the UWM campus next to the Kenwood Interdisciplinary Research Complex (KIRC) on 3135 N. Maryland Ave., Milwaukee, WI 53211. Limited parking is available in the parking lot of the Physics Building. Additional parking can be found at the Northwest Quadrant, Lubar, or Pavillion parking structures as well as along E. Kenwood Blvd. Four Bublr Bike stations are located around the UWM campus.

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3. Milwaukee Public Libraries Solar Eclipse Events

Observe the solar eclipse, learn the key factors that bring about an eclipse, and take part in fun solar activities.

There will be a free Pre-Eclipse Program at the Mill Road Branch on Friday, August 11th from 2 – 3 pm. Learn what’s happening in the skies above, how to view it safely, and when the next eclipse will take place. Free eclipse glasses will be available to each attendee at the conclusion of the presentation while supplies last.

Visit any of these library locations during open hours on Eclipse Day for a free pair of eclipse glasses while supplies last. Then step outside and enjoy the view:

Atkinson, 1960 W. Atkinson Ave.

Bay View, 2566 S. Kinnickinnic Ave.

Center Street, 3969 N. 74th St.

East, 2320 N. Cramer St.

Forest Home, 1432 W. Forest Home Ave.

M.L. King, 310 W. Locust St.

Tippecanoe, 3912 S. Howell Ave.

Villard Square, 5190 N. 35th St. (Craft included)

Washington Park, 2121 N. Sherman Blvd.

Zablocki, 3501 W. Oklahoma Ave.

Enjoy a Solar Story Time and crafts before heading out to view the eclipse. The event will last from 12:00 – 2:00 p.m. at the Capitol Branch, 3969 N. 74th St.

Catch a glimpse of the eclipse on Central Library’s Green Roof. Learn fun facts about what’s happening in the skies. Tours will take place every 15 minutes. The Green Roof deck is limited to 20 people at a time. Eclipse glasses will also be available for viewing on the Wisconsin Avenue patios. In case of inclement weather, we will stream footage of the solar eclipse in Community Room 1.

Finally, you can celebrate at the Eclipse Extravaganza at the Mill Road Branch (6431 N. 76th St.) from 12:00-2:30 p.m.This eclipse event is fun for the whole family. Activities include an inside streaming of the eclipse, astronomy bingo and scavenger hunt, Pin the star on the constellation, UV Bead craft project, Create your own constellation, plus Pete’s Pops and Mister Bar-B-Que food trucks will have food on-site for purchase.

4. Brookfield Library Viewing Party

August 21st


Bring your family and your lawn chair and join the Brookfield Public Library on the front lawn of the library for this out-of-the world event. They will have a limited number of eclipse glasses available for safe Solar Eclipse viewing. Weather permitting. Eclipse glasses are required for safe viewing.

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5. Whitefish Bay Library Solar Eclipse Community Viewing Party

Monday, August 21, 12:45pm

Meet in the Kid’s South Tower at Whitefish Bay Library

All are invited to this community viewing party of the solar eclipse. Learn a little about the eclipse and then walk over to Schoolhouse Park to see it with your very own eyes. They will have glasses for the first 100 people to safely view the eclipse.

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6. Mequon Public Library Solar Eclipse Viewing Party

August 21st

12:00 p.m. - 3:00 p.m.

Mequon Library Grounds

Join in for a sun-filled afternoon to watch the solar eclipse! There will be activites and crafts, as well as a special science-themed storytime.

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Do you know of any other kid-friendly solar eclipse viewing parties? Let us know about them!

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