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Scobee Education Center…

Around 1,500 people showed up to the Scobee Education Center to see the solar eclipse and take part in an astronomical amount of fun.
Solar Eclipse Viewing

Scobee Education Center the Hot Spot to View the Eclipse in San Antonio

On the day America paused to look up into the sky and glimpse a solar eclipse, about 1,500 people showed up to witness the astronomical event themselves at the Scobee Education Center.

Although San Antonio was not in the path of the total solar eclipse - the moon only covered 65 percent of the sun ­- that didn't dampen the enthusiasm of the crowd that visited the SAC campus.

SAC student George Hernandez said he has seen meteor showers and comets but never a solar eclipse. He added that he was glad the Scobee Education Center organized the viewing event. 

"I think they did a good job of helping people witness something that's historic," he said.

According to Rick Varner, director of the Scobee Education Center, they have been planning for the partial solar eclipse viewing for at least nine months. "We purchased 1,000 glasses to view the solar eclipse earlier this year," he said.

In addition, curriculum about the eclipse was included in the summer camps held at the Scobee Education Center in June and July and the Southwest Research Institute donated an additional 250 glasses for the viewing.

On the day of the big event, the Scobee Education Center opened its doors at 11:30 a.m. to a crowd that lined around the campus. People came into the center to pick up glasses and enter a raffle to have a chance to see the eclipse through the telescope in the Scanlan Observatory. The crowd was also invited to see a live feed from NASA that was showing inside the planetarium.

Outside, the San Antonio Astronomical Society set up several telescopes to give people a chance to get a closer look at the solar eclipse. A food truck and face painting booth at the Scobee Education Center made the event even more festive.

In spite of a day that was hot and humid, with cloudy skies occasionally hiding the sun, everyone said they preferred being at the Scobee Education Center to participate in the viewing rather than watching it on television.

Gisela Mercado she looked forward to telling everyone she came to the Scobee Education Center to see the solar eclipse.

"The event has been great. I'm surprised so many people came out," she said. "Thanks to SAC for sponsoring this."  

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