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August 16, 2017

 
***All solar eclipse glasses have been distributed.  The museum does not have any solar glasses for free distribution or for sale.

The Virginia Museum of Natural History is pleased to announce that it will serve as a solar eclipse viewing venue on Monday, August 21 from 1 p.m. to 4 p.m., with the first 100 visitors receiving free eclipse viewing glasses. Additionally, the museum will offer free admission to its exhibit galleries for all visitors throughout the event. The eclipse viewing event is made possible through a collaboration between the museum and Henry County Public Schools.

Eclipse viewing glasses will be available at the museum box office begining Monday, August 21 at 1 p.m. and will not be made available for reservation or pick-up in advance. The viewing will take place outside on the museum's plaza, as well as in a designated area within the museum's main parking lot. Food and drinks will be available for purchase outside, as well as inside the museum's PALEO Café.

In Martinsville, about 92% of the sun will be covered by the moon during maximum eclipse. The start of the partial eclipse will begin at approximately 1:13 p.m., with maximum eclipse occurring at approximately 2:41 p.m. The end of the partial eclipse will occur at approximately 4:02 p.m.

SAFETY FIRST! Whether you are viewing the eclipse at the museum or elsewhere, NEVER look at or towards the sun without safety viewing glasses that are compliant with the ISO 12312-2 safety standard. Even with proper viewing glasses, the museum does not recommend viewing the eclipse for any extended period of time. The museum has approximately 100 pair of "Eclipser" glasses, which are labeled to conform to the transmission requirements of ISO 12312-2 and are sold by a reputable vendor, according to the American Astronomical Society's website (eclipse.aas.org). The AAS website has many valuable eclipse related resources, including information regarding eye safety.

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