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Solar Eclipse 2024: Where to Get Free Glasses and Find Viewing Parties in Upper Manhattan

Solar Eclipse 2024: Where to Get Glasses and Find Viewing Parties in Upper Manhattan New York City
The New York Public Library is giving away free solar eclipse glasses until supplies last.

Updated: 4/8/2024

It's time to get ready for the once-in-a-lifetime solar eclipse taking place on Monday, April 8.

New York City will only see a partial (about 90%) eclipse, but it will still be quite memorable.

The moon will start passing in front of the sun at 2:10pm, with the peak of the eclipse happening at 3:25pm.

To view the celestial phenomenon, you'll need a pair of special ISO-certified glasses (it is dangerous to look directly at the eclipse with the naked eye or regular sunglasses), which you can get for free at your local branch of the New York Public Library, while supplies last.

If the library runs out, sidewalk vendors along 125th Street are already selling them, too.

NYC Parks is hosting a series of watch parties, two of which are in Upper Manhattan and are listed below (unfortunately one is already waitlist-only). NYS Parks is also having its own event at Harlem's Riverbank State Park, as are some community gardens and indie shops.

Of course you can also head to any park or wide street with unobstructed views and watch it on your own. Just remember to take all the necessary precautions.

Viewing parties, from south to north:

Monday, April 8 2:30pm-3:30pm

Randall's Island Randall's Island Park, East River Picnic Area (enter from East Harlem by foot/bike via the 103rd Street Footbridge or the RFK Triborough Bridge)

This viewing party includes free light refreshments, educational information about the solar eclipse, and a limited supply of free eclipse glasses.

Monday, April 8 2:10pm-4:36pm

Central Harlem Outside Revolution Books, 437 Malcolm X Blvd at W 132nd St

Discuss the science behind the eclipse while watching it outside of this indie bookstore. Come early for free eclipse glasses (there will be only a limited number).

Monday, April 8 2pm-4pm

West Harlem Meet by the courtyard at Denny Farrell Riverbank State Park, entrance at 145th St and Riverside Drive

Join New York State Parks in viewing the solar eclipse. Certified eclipse glasses will be available first come, first served.

Monday, April 8 2:30pm-4pm

Hamilton Heights Maggie's Garden, W 149th between Broadway and Amsterdam Ave

The folks at this community garden will be giving away 30 pairs of solar eclipse-viewing glasses and bookmarks with built-in pinhole cameras. There will also be educational and safety info on display.

Monday, April 8 1:30pm–3:30pm

Inwood Inwood Hill Park, W 218th St and Indian Road

The Urban Park Rangers will be on hand to lend a pair of their safety viewing glasses or give you a look through their solar lens telescope.

For daily updates, follow The Curious Uptowner on Facebook, Instagram and X


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