NASA Is Inviting You to Watch the April 8 Total Solar Eclipse at the Cotton Bowl in Dallas

The free "Sun, Moon, and You" event at the Cotton Bowl in Dallas' Fair Park will offer a sky-side seat of an amazing total solar eclipse (fingers crossed for clear skies). Scientists and astronomers will be taking the stage along with space explorer characters from the PBS show "Ready, Jet, Go."

The Cotton Bowl’s 92,100 seats have offered some stunning views—from early Dallas Cowboys seasons to countless Texas-OU classics to 1994 FIFA World Cup matches to a Vietnam War POW homecoming celebration in 1973. But the most amazing sight ever will be overhead on April 8—a total solar eclipse. And NASA is inviting you to claim your free seat at the Cotton Bowl to see it all happen.

NASA is teaming up with the National Science Foundation and the National Environmental Satellite, Data, and Information Service (NESDIS) to host the free “Sun, Moon, and You” total solar eclipse event at the stadium in Dallas’ Fair Park.

From 12:23 p.m. to 3:02 p.m. Dallas time on April 8, the spectacular sight will be accompanied at the Cotton Bowl “by a dynamic lineup of speakers who will delve into the scientific marvels and cultural significance of this cosmic event,” NESDIS said. 

Free tickets will be required to attend the event. They aren’t available yet, but check back at this NESDIS web page for upcoming details.

Oh—and cross your fingers that we have clear skies on April 8, so there’s actually something to see!

Cotton Bowl [File photo]

Scientists, astronomers, and PBS’ ‘Ready, Jet, Go’ team will take the stage

Scientists and astronomers will take the stage at the Cotton Bowl event along with space explorer characters from the PBS show “Ready, Jet, Go”—sharing fun facts and insights about the eclipse “in real-time.”

Promising an “interactive and educational experience for all ages,” organizers will offer sprawling tents featuring STEM-related organizations, where attendees can participate in activities and hands-on experiments. “Immerse yourself in the wonders of science and technology, surrounded by passionate professionals eager to share their knowledge and inspire curiosity,” NESDIS said.

“This year’s total solar eclipse will be at least partially visible to all in the contiguous United States, making it the most accessible eclipse this nation has experienced in this generation,” Nicola Fox, associate administrator, Science Mission Directorate at NASA headquarters in Washington, said in a statement. “There is space for everyone to join NASA in experiencing this beautiful amalgamation of our Earth, Sun and Moon in an alignment that will not only lead to new scientific discoveries, but an incredible shared moment of inspiration and awe.”

Time-lapse images of a 2017 total solar eclipse over Madras, Oregon [Photo NASA/Aubrey Gemignani]

Dallas Arboretum and others also hosting April 8 eclipse events 

Tickets for a separate NASA-hosted event at the Dallas Arboretum are already sold out, the space agency said. But as of 4 p.m. today, the Arboretum’s website said group tickets to the event were still available.

Many, many other venues in North Texas will be offering alternate ways to watch the celestial event as part of an awestruck crowd. Dallas’ AT&T Discovery District will be hosting a free downtown “citywide celebration and watch party,” with NASA’s live feed on its giant video wall.

Not far away in downtown Dallas, the AT&T Performing Arts Center will be presenting a free event called “Total Eclipse of the Arts.”

And over in Fort Worth, the Fort Worth Museum of Science and History and the Fort Worth Botanic Garden will be offering a day of eclipse activities and space science, free with general admission.

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