Eclipse Encounter ’23

A solar eclipse viewer that says "#EquippedToEclipse" being held up by a hand in front of the Adler Planetarium

Your time to soak up the Moon’s shadow is fast approaching, eclipse chasers!

Celebrate the annular solar eclipse this fall at the Adler Planetarium! On October 14, 2023, everyone’s favorite star (the Sun) and our rocky celestial neighbor (the Moon) are lining up to give us an opportunity to see a partial solar eclipse from Chicago.

During our free outdoor Eclipse Encounter ’23 event, we’ll have activities around the outside of the planetarium where attendees will be encouraged to walk around, hang out, and observe the sky while the eclipse is happening.

Tickets are not required for this free outdoor (weather dependent) event. The Adler Planetarium will be open regardless of the weather—all tickets for Museum Entry to go inside the planetarium must be bought online, in advance of your visit and all sales are final.

From now through April 8, 2024, buy or renew a Star Pass and receive a free solar eclipse viewer that can be used to view the Sun safely during the upcoming October 14, 2023, and April 8, 2024, solar eclipses. Limit of one viewer per order, while supplies last. Just show your Star Pass purchase or renewal confirmation email to a member of our Space Shop staff on the upper level of the planetarium to redeem.

Eclipse Encounter ’23 Activities

A child standing looking through a telescope during the day with a person behind the telescope wearing a shirt with "Space For Everyone"
Image Caption: Solar telescope observing at the Adler Planetarium with our astronomy educator.
  • Safe solar viewing through telescopes on the Telescope Terrace
  • Telescopes for solar projection and eclipse photography
  • Free solar viewer giveaways (while supplies last)
  • Solar viewing activities created by Adler Teens
  • Photo opportunities with Big Solar Eclipse glasses

To stay up-to-date with all things solar eclipse, be sure to sign up for our emails and select “Eclipses Across Illinois + Solar Eclipse Info.”

Important Solar Eclipse Information You Need To Know

The partial solar eclipse will occur from 10:37 am–1:22 pm CDT. It is at its maximum coverage—when 43% of the Sun will be covered by the Moon as seen from Chicago—at 11:58 am CDT. This solar eclipse will be seen across Illinois and much of the United States.  

A solar eclipse occurs when the Sun, the Moon, and Earth line up, and the Moon (which is between the Sun and Earth) temporarily blocks the Sun’s light. The kind of eclipse you see from your location depends on the Moon’s orbital path across Earth’s surface and how far away the Moon is from Earth and from the Sun.

Adler Planetarium infographic showing "October 14, 2023: What Will Illinois See? Solar Eclipse Maximum Visibility in Illinois" with an outline of the state and 11 cities highlighted.
Image Caption: Adler Planetarium infographic showing the maximum annular solar eclipse visibility in 11 cities across Illinois during the October 14, 2023 eclipse.

There are three different types of solar eclipses: partialtotal, and annular. A partial solar eclipse is when the Moon partly covers the Sun—it usually looks like a bite has been taken out of it! A total solar eclipse is when the Moon totally covers the Sun. An annular solar eclipse happens when the Moon appears a little smaller in the sky than the Sun, so it cannot fully block the Sun’s rays. During an annular eclipse, you’ll see a bright ring around the edges of the Moon with the Sun peeking out from behind it.

Adler Planetarium infographic depicting an "Annular Solar Eclipse"
Image Caption: Adler Planetarium infographic depicting an “Annular Solar Eclipse” happening on October 14, 2023.

The solar eclipse on October 14, 2023, will be either an annular or partial solar eclipse depending on your location.

Watch The Partial Solar Eclipse Online

Can’t join us in person? No sweat! Watch the solar eclipse live with Sky Observers Hangout! Weather permitting, our astronomy educators will livestream the eclipse through a solar telescope in Chicago. We’ll guide you through how this celestial alignment occurs, what makes this an annular eclipse, and offer some tips on how you can view the eclipse as it happens!


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