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College of Food, Agricultural, and Environmental Sciences

March 26, 2024 - 9:13am --

Where will you be on April 8 for the Solar Eclipse?  The media has shared many stories and there’s a lot of planning by our emergency management officials and the communities to make sure that we are prepared for a huge influx of visitors.  According to the Ohio Emergency Management Agency, total solar eclipses occur roughly every 1.5 years somewhere on Earth. Since the founding of the United States, only 21 total solar eclipses have crossed the lower 48 states. The last total solar eclipse visible in Ohio was more than 200 years ago, and the next one in Ohio will be in 75 years.  Emily Marrison recently shared the following information with her readers.

The path of total darkness is 124 miles wide and will stretch across 13 states. An estimated 31 million people live in this path, which includes cities like Dallas, Little Rock, Indianapolis, Cleveland, and Rochester. The point that will experience the longest total duration of the eclipse in Ohio is Avon Lake, just east of Cleveland in Lorain County. The population of Lorain County is expected to increase to more than 1 million people to witness the nearly four minutes of darkness.

The eclipse will take about 2.5 hours. The moon will begin to pass in front of the sun around 2 p.m. and the eclipse will be over at 4:30 p.m. The most complete part of the eclipse will happen for us around 3:13 p.m.

Information and viewing safety tips for eclipse

Ohio State University Extension specialists have put together some great resources for adults and youth to learn more about the solar eclipse. You can find these lessons and resources at These include instructions for activities to explore shadows and even make a pinhole camera.

Here are some safety tips for eclipse glasses and solar viewers from Dr. Cynthia Canan, Ohio’s 4-H STEM specialist and Dr. Wayne Schlingman, director of OSU’s Arne Slettebak Planetarium.

1. Always inspect your solar filters before use. If scratched, punctured, torn, or otherwise damaged, please do not use them.

2. If you normally wear eyeglasses, keep them on. Put your eclipse glasses over them or hold your handheld viewer in front of them.

3. During the eclipse, cover your eyes with your eclipse glasses BEFORE looking at the Sun. After looking, turn away before removing your glasses.

4. Do not look at the sun through an unfiltered camera, telescope, binoculars, or other optical devices while using eclipse solar filters because the concentrated rays could damage both the filter and your eyes.

5. The only time it is safe to remove your eclipse glasses is during the total phase of a total solar eclipse. This may only last for a brief time, so be careful!

6. Supervise young children to ensure eclipse glasses are secure. To ensure a snug fit, try attaching ribbons or elastic bands to the glasses.

If you are looking for glasses and viewers to purchase, the best option is to check the American Astronomical Society's list of safe suppliers of solar viewers and filters. Ensure that glasses and viewers have evidence they comply with ISO 12312-2, the international safety standard for solar filters. Please note that this isn't a foolproof plan, as the ISO approval logo can be counterfeited.

Activities taking place on OSU Wooster Campus include the Bug Zoo and exhibits from campus researchers.  Our office will be closed for the day as our staff will be at there as well. You can check out the details at or give us a call if you have any questions.

Melinda Hill is an OSU Extension Family & Consumer Sciences Educator and may be reached at 330-264-8722
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This article was previously published in The Daily Record.