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Free eclipse shows incoming at Whittenberger Planetarium

July 25, 2017

On August 21, 2017, Idaho will be in the path of a total solar eclipse — and The College of Idaho is ready to get people excited about this rare event this August at the Whittenberger Planetarium.

The Planetarium will host several shows this August, including two on Aug. 10, one on Aug. 11 and two on Aug. 15. Each show is designed to help educate and prepare the public for the coming eclipse, offering an in-depth look at the science behind the eclipse, the status of the night sky during the eclipse and safe ways to view it.

The show on Thursday, Aug. 10 will be hosted by Planetarium Director Amy Truksa and storyteller Jim Cogan, focusing on eclipse stories and mythologies from around the world. The show begins at 5:45 p.m. at the Planetarium and will cost $10 for adults and $5 for children. Eclipse viewers can be made immediately following the program for free with the aid of C of I Physics Professor Katie Devine. Reservations can be made at www.collegeofidaho.edu/planetarium.

Plan to arrive early as reservations will be forfeited to walk-ins 10 minutes before show time.  Walk-ins who are unable to get a seat for the planetarium program will be provided with a mini-lecture on the science and safety of eclipse viewing and build an eclipse viewer.  Everyone attending should bring an unflattened, empty cereal box if you would like to build a pinhole projector for eclipse viewing.

There will also be a series of free eclipse shows at 7 p.m. on Aug. 10,  7 p.m. on Aug. 11 and at 5:30 p.m. and 7:30 p.m. on Aug. 15. Offered free of charge thanks to support from the American Astronomical Society’s Solar Eclipse Task Force, the shows will give an overview of the constellations, planets and moon that can be seen in the August skies, as well as an overview about eclipses and how to view them. Participants will be able to build an eclipse viewer immediately following the program.

In addition to the free shows, there will be multiple shows available for standard planetarium prices. Aug. 9 will have available seats for 6 p.m. and 7:30 p.m. shows, while Aug. 10 will have an additional show at 3 p.m. and Saturday, Aug. 12 will have a show at 4 p.m.

Ten seats have been reserved at each show for school teachers and one guest until Aug. 1. If you are a teacher, please contact Kinga Britschgi at [email protected] or (208) 459-5211 to secure your reservation.

The Planetarium is located in the Boone Science Building near Jewett Auditorium at the corner of 20th Ave. and Fillmore St. in Caldwell, Idaho.

The College of Idaho has a 125-year-old legacy of excellence. The C of I is known for its outstanding academic programs, winning athletics tradition and history of producing successful graduates, including seven Rhodes Scholars, three governors, four NFL players and countless business leaders and innovators. Its distinctive PEAK Curriculum challenges students to attain competency in the four knowledge peaks of humanities, natural sciences, social sciences and a professional field—empowering them to earn a major and three minors in four years. The College’s close-knit, residential campus is located in Caldwell, where its proximity both to Boise and to the world-class outdoor activities of southwest Idaho’s mountains and rivers offers unique opportunities for learning beyond the classroom.  For more information, visit www.collegeofidaho.edu