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Informing the  Berea and Baldwin Wallace University Communities Since 1913

The Exponent

Informing the  Berea and Baldwin Wallace University Communities Since 1913

The Exponent

Informing the  Berea and Baldwin Wallace University Communities Since 1913

The Exponent

Celestial event brings together campus community

Event will feature concessions, entertainment, activities and astronomy professionals.
George+Finnie+Stadium%2C+where+students+and+community+members+will+gather+to+witness+the+total+solar+eclipse.
Jason Heisler
George Finnie Stadium, where students and community members will gather to witness the total solar eclipse.

Baldwin Wallace University will host a rare opportunity for students and community members to witness a total solar eclipse on Monday, April 8 at George Finnie Stadium. The “Total BW Eclipse” event will take place from 2:00 to 4:00 p.m., with the full totality of the eclipse happening around 3:10 p.m.  

“Solar eclipses happen somewhere on Earth twice a year on average. Since the path is narrow, they are rare for any particular location on Earth,” said Gary Kader, director of the Burrell Observatory at BW. “Compared to the 2017 eclipse that traveled from the West Coast to the East Coast, this one will travel diagonally from Texas through Ohio, then along the Great Lakes to the Atlantic.” 

According to Kader, the path of totality for this eclipse will pass over a population of 32 million, significantly more than the 12 million covered by the 2017 eclipse. The next total solar eclipse in Ohio will be visible in the year 2099, underscoring the unique nature of this celestial event. 

As the Cleveland area prepares for this astronomical spectacle, city officials are bracing for massive crowds. The City of Cleveland expects anywhere from 140,000 to 200,000 visitors packing the area from Edgewater Beach to The Great Lakes Science Center, equal to roughly three Browns games simultaneously, according to an article by FOX 8. 

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“The influx of visitors on Monday will be like a Browns game, Cavs game, Guardians game, and St. Patrick’s Day all combined,” Cleveland’s mayor said in comments reported by FOX 8. With such a surge of people, widespread road closures and parking bans from 9 a.m. to 9 p.m. are expected to cause significant traffic delays. 

The Cleveland Police Department is preparing by having districts fully staffed across the city to handle the crowds and public safety concerns. 

At the BW event, free solar eclipse glasses will be provided to all attendees, while supplies last. Kader and members of the Cuyahoga Astronomical Association will be on hand with telescopes to help explain the phenomenon and point out visible details during totality.  

“We will be explaining what is happening with the eclipse and will be pointing out what can be seen during totality,” said Kader. “We will also have a video of the BW Beatles.” 

In addition to the educational opportunities, BW’s event will feature concessions, activities, and entertainment to create an engaging atmosphere. The university’s famous “Moon Pies” from the BW Bakery will also be available. 

For Harrison Gilberti, a fourth-year vocal performance major, the prospect of the campus coming together for a shared experience is exciting. 

“It’ll be a cool bonding experience for the BW community,” said Gilberti. “It is nice to know that the university is like, ‘Hey, you don’t have to do this. But if you want, we’re all going to be in the stadium. We’ll give you glasses so you can experience this.'”   

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