TODAY’S THE DAY: What to know about watching the solar eclipse in the Bronx

Bronxites watch the 2017 eclipse.
Bronxites watch the 2017 eclipse.
Photo courtesy Walter Pofeldt, Miriam Quin, St. Barnabas Hospital

This afternoon, New York City skies will be graced with a rare solar eclipse that millions will be able to gaze upon with wonder.

Thousands have traveled upstate to experience the total darkness that comes with an eclipse, but there are still plenty of ways to enjoy the day right here in the Bronx and throughout New York City.

Here’s what you should know ahead of eclipse day.

What is a solar eclipse?

According to NASA, a solar eclipse “happens when, at just the right moment, the Moon passes between the Sun and Earth.” If you want to experience total darkness, you must be in the line of totality, otherwise you will only experience a partial eclipse.

When is it taking place?

The eclipse will take place on April 8, with New York City reaching its peak between 2:10 p.m. and 4:30 p.m. At its peak in the five boroughs, the sun will be 90% covered.

How can I watch it?

The best way to watch the eclipse is to use eclipse viewing glasses, and no, sunglasses don’t count. You might be thinking, “Do I REALLY need those?” Yes! It can be dangerous to look directly at the eclipse because it can damage your eyes. If you have eclipse glasses from the 2017 partial solar eclipse, those are safe to reuse this time as long as they aren’t warped and don’t have scratches or holes.

However, another way to watch the eclipse if you don’t have the eclipse glasses is to make a pinhole projector. Poke a hole in a piece of cardstock or cardboard, hold it up during the eclipse and look down to see a partial crescent projected onto the ground.

Where can I get free glasses?

There are plenty of places throughout the city handing out free eclipse viewing glasses, until supplies last. There are limited-edition I LOVE NY eclipse glasses at 30 locations throughout the state, and several of the city’s public libraries are handing out free glasses as well.

Where can I watch in the Bronx?

Wave Hill Public Garden and Cultural Center, 4900 Independence Ave. (Noon to 5 p.m.)

One of Monday’s events acknowledging the solar eclipse will take place at the Wave Hill Public Garden and Cultural Center, which will be hosting a solar eclipse viewing party from noon to 5 p.m. Visitors will have the opportunity to plant seeds, make a festive solar eclipse party hat or a celestial floral headband while enjoying live music as well as story time as the 28-acre Riverdale estate collaborates with the Riverdale Library for this occasion. Free viewing glasses will also be available to those in attendance.

Spuyten Duyvil Library, 650 W. 235th Street (2 to 4 p.m.)

Take a couple of hours to relax in the cozy eclipse viewing area of the Spuyten Duyvil Library, which presents “The Eclipse Olympics,” which will include carnival style games. Visitors will also receive free eclipse viewing glasses to take in the view.

Roberto Clemente State Park, 301 W. Tremont Ave. (2 to 4 p.m.)

Residents in the northwest Bronx can journey over to Roberto Clemente State Park, located along the Hudson River, and join NYS Parks for the Great North American Solar Eclipse event, from 2 to 4 p.m.

All of the event’s programs are free, and eclipse glasses will be provided on a first-come, first-served basis. Children under 16 must be accompanied by an adult.

Bartow Pell Mansion Museum, 895 Shore Rd. (2 p.m. to 4 p.m.)

Another prime location to watch the total solar eclipse within the borough is at the front lawn of the Bartow Pell Mansion Museum, located within Pelham Bay Park. The moon will cover up about 90% of the sun at this location during maximum eclipse, compared to the moon fully eclipsing the sun, referred to as the path of totality.

For this event, Bartow Pell educator and New York City NASA Solar System Ambassador Robin Vernuccio will educate those in attendance on what is taking place during the eclipse and also lead fun eclipse activities for children.

Fordham University’s Rose Hill campus, East Fordham Road (3:15 to 3:45 p.m.)

Fordham University’s Astrology Club will also be set up in the center of Edwards Parade, located within Fordham University’s Rose Hill campus, to host a solar eclipse viewing event.

From 3:15 to 3:45 p.m. the group will project the eclipse onto a screen, while also using a telescope, for safe viewing. The Fordham Astronomy Club will also have telescopes set up for sightings of Jupiter and Saturn, which will be visible during Monday’s eclipse.

New York Yankees vs. Miami Marlins: Yankee Stadium, 1 E. 161st St. 

Astrology and America’s favorite pastime will unfortunately not come together at Yankee Stadium on Monday afternoon, as the Bronx Bombers have postponed their “Solar Eclipse Day” against the Miami Marlins, much to the disappointment of Yankee fans and space enthusiasts. In acknowledgement of the solar eclipse, the Yankees have postponed Monday’s game — originally scheduled for 2:05 p.m. — until 6:05 p.m. Monday evening.

Another version of this story was originally published by our affiliate AMNewYork.

Reach Steven Goodstein at or (718) 260–8326. For more coverage, follow us on Twitter, Facebook and Instagram @bronxtimes