Watch CBS News

Where to find safe solar eclipse glasses in the Philadelphia area

How the Franklin Institute in Philadelphia is celebrating the 2024 solar eclipse
How the Franklin Institute in Philadelphia is celebrating the 2024 solar eclipse 02:40

PHILADELPHIA (CBS) -- When the moon passes between the sun and the Earth on Monday, April 8, it'll be tempting to look directly at the sky for a good look at the eclipse.

But looking at a solar eclipse without proper eye protection can damage your eyes. According to NASA, "Viewing any part of the bright Sun through a camera lens, binoculars, or a telescope without a special-purpose solar filter secured over the front of the optics will instantly cause severe eye injury."

The eclipse is set to happen in our area at 3:23 p.m. and lasts for about four-and-a-half minutes. While the Delaware Valley isn't in the path of totality, the region will see about 90% totality during the 2024 eclipse.

So before you turn your eyes to the sky, here's a list of where you can find safe solar eclipse glasses and solar viewers in the Philadelphia area.

Burlington County Library

The library, located at 15 Pioneer Boulevard in Westampton, New Jersey, will be handing out eclipse glasses to guests at their viewing party from 2-4:30 p.m.

The event will also have a variety of ways to view the eclipse, including a solar telescope and sunspotter.

Franklin Institute store and viewing party

On Monday, April 8, the Franklin Institute will host a Solar Eclipse Viewing Party outside the museum, along the 20th Street sidewalk.

Solar eclipse glasses are available for purchase in advance at the Institute's SciStore or during the event.

Independence Visitor Center watch party

The Philadelphia Visitor Center is hosting an eclipse watch party Monday afternoon.

The first 50 visitors will get a free pair of viewing glasses courtesy of the Science History Institute.

Morris Arboretum and Gardens

The Morris Arboretum and Gardens is hosting its solar eclipse watch party starting at 2:30 p.m. Monday, April 8. Kids can make cereal box viewers and other visitors will receive free solar eclipse glasses with general admission.

Large retail chains

According to the American Astronomical Society, the following retail chains sell ISO-compliant safe eclipse glasses:

  • Staples
  • Lowe's
  • Wegmans
  • Cracker Barrel
  • Walmart
  • 7-Eleven

Warby Parker giving out free eclipse glasses

Starting Monday, April 1, eyeglasses retailer Warby Parker will give away ISO-certified solar eclipse glasses for free at all stores. The Philadelphia Warby Parker store is located at 1523 Walnut Street in Center City.

Glasses will be available while supplies last. Families can take up to two pairs.

Stores that run out of solar eclipse glasses will give out eclipse pinhole projectors, which can be used to safely view the eclipse through a projection.

Warby Parker also has locations in Suburban Square in Ardmore, King of Prussia, Dresher, and Marlton and Cherry Hill in New Jersey.

West Chester University eclipse event

The first 750 people to arrive at West Chester University's solar eclipse viewing event, hosted by the Mather Planetarium, will receive a pair of eclipse glasses.

The public event is free for all from 1-4 p.m. on the school's South Campus at the S parking lot, located at 850 South New Street, West Chester, across from the tennis courts.

View CBS News In
CBS News App Open
Chrome Safari Continue
Be the first to know
Get browser notifications for breaking news, live events, and exclusive reporting.