HOUSTON -- The Moon will pass directly between the Earth and sun today, casting the Moon’s shadow on the continental U.S. from coast to coast for more than 90 minutes.
This is the first total solar eclipse visible over the U.S. since 1981 and the first since 1918 to be seen coast to coast. While Houston is not in the direct path of the eclipse, it will still be visible as a partial eclipse.
LIVE ECLIPSE VIDEO: Tap here to watch live coverage right now
What to expect in Houston
The Total Solar Eclipse will be observed as a Partial Solar Eclipse for residents in Houston, Texas. It will begin at approximately 11:46 a.m.. when the Sun will touch the Moon. The maximum eclipse will happen at 1:16 p.m. when the Moon will cover two-thirds or roughly 67 percent of the Sun’s surface. The Partial Eclipse will end in Houston at 2:45 p.m.
From beginning to end, the Partial Eclipse is expected to last 2 hours, 59 minutes. Watch parties will be happening at several locations in Houston along with our online live stream.
Couldn't find glasses? Here's how to make an eclipse box
Don't have eclipse glasses? No worries – you can still view the eclipse with a do-it-yourself eclipse box. You shouldn't ever look directly at the sun without eclipse glasses or some other appropriate type of eye protection, because you could damage your retina. Unfortunately, eclipse glasses are becoming difficult to find, and there is concern about fake eclipse glasses, which might damage your eyes. Tap here for the instructions & video.
Here are events happening around Houston to get in on the fun:
Southwest Airlines offering in-air views
Southwest Airlines is selling seats for the best in-air view along the solar eclipse's path. The carrier has identified scheduled flights most likely to experience maximum effects of the August 21st eclipse and will bring Customers on those flights some commemorative flare with special viewing glasses, offering cosmic cocktails, and social media engagement across the atmosphere on Southwest's gate-to-gate WiFi. According to the airline, the scheduled Southwest flights with the greatest likelihood of offering those in the air the best view are:
Southwest flight 1375 departing Seattle-Tacoma at 09:05 am PDT for St. Louis
Southwest flight 1368 departing Portland at 09:05 am PDT for St. Louis
Southwest flight 1577 departing Denver at 10:20 am MDT for St. Louis
Southwest flight 301 departing Denver at 10:20 am MDT for Nashville
Southwest flight 1969 departing Denver at 09:50 am MDT for Atlanta
The Harris County Public Library in Crosby is hosting a presenter from the Houston Astronomical Society explaining the science behind the eclipse. The library will also offer a hands-on educational activity - participants can decorate cookies to represent the sun, sunspots and solar flares. Attendees will also get a pair of eclipse viewing glasses. The event is free.
The Houston Museum of Natural Science is hosting a trip from Houston to Casper, Wyoming for 220 people. The museum will bring along telescopes, docents, astronomers and professional photographers.
The Children's Museum of Houston is hosting a workshop called "Preparing for the Solar Eclipse." As a part of this workshop, you will construct your very own Solar Eclipse Pin-hole Viewer!
The Burke Baker Planetarium will offer a special schedule featuring six 15 minute shows about the eclipse. These will run at 12:00, 12:20, 12:40, 1:00, 1:20, and 1:40, and tickets will be $4. The 2:00 show is a special Starry Night Express featuring a live feed from Casper, Wyoming, with Museum staff in the path of totality.
The Harris County Public Library in Crosby will be live streaming the eclipse from NASA from noon to 2 p.m.
The Houston Museum of Natural Science will host special shows in the Planetarium and will feature footage from Wyoming. The event will be held at both the Sugar Land and Midtown locations.
The Children's Museum of Houston is hosting a viewing party from 11 a.m. to 3 p.m.
The Lunar and Planetary Institute is hosting 'Eclipse Over Houston' in partnership with Levy Park and the Clear Lake City-County Freeman Branch Library.
If your organization has a planned watch party or event, send them to firstname.lastname@example.org to be added to our list.