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Solar Eclipse 2017

Solar Viewing on Terrace

Solar Eclipse 2017 at the SC State Museum

AUG. 18 – 21, 2017

On August 21, 2017 Columbia, SC will be one of the best places to witness the Solar Eclipse of 2017. While the entire United States will see a partial eclipse, Columbia will be one of a handful of cities to see the amazing spectacle of a total solar eclipse. The SC State Museum will be hosting an fun-filled weekend of solar eclipse related events leading up to a special opportunity to view the eclipse at the museum.



Please note: weekend tickets do not include museum admission on the day of the solar eclipse, Mon., Aug. 21. There will be a different ticketing option available for that day.

Museum Open Fri. – Sun., Aug. 18 – 20, 2017 from 10 a.m. – 10 p.m. each day

$15 adults, $12 children 12 and under

Solar Eclipse 2017 Weekend Tickets include:

  • General admission to 4 floors of exhibit galleries featuring South Carolina art, science & tech, natural history and cultural history

  • Access to the Robert B. Ariail Telescope Gallery and Boeing Observatory. PLEAST NOTE: The observatory will be open during the day on Aug. 19 – 20, as well as before and after the Solar Eclipse on Aug. 21. The observatory and terrace will not be open during the eclipse, as it will be visible to the naked-eye. The museum will be offering solar viewing glasses so guests may view the eclipse safely in the designated viewing areas outside of the museum.

  • Special access to Total Eclipse related changing exhibitions

  • Special eclipse education pop-up stations throughout the museum

  • Solar Eclipse glasses (in preparation for August 21, 2017)

  • Access to a 4D theater movie showing

  • Access to the blockbuster exhibition, Savage Ancient Seas

  • Access to a special Planetarium Eclipse Show, Shadows from Space:

    When the Moon passes directly in front of the Sun, the world changes. Stars come out, the temperature drops, and the Sun’s corona appears as a ring of light around a dark disk. Journey into space to see what causes this magnificent celestial display, which everyone here in Columbia will enjoy on Aug 21, 2017. Learn about the significance of total solar eclipses and what motivates people to travel great distances to spend just a minute or two in a shadow cast from space.

Guest will also have access to:

  • 4,000 sq. ft. South Carolina Gift store, the Cotton Mill Exchange

  • Crescent Café

  • Bathrooms on every floor

  • Free parking (for guests and buses)



The SC State Museum will be the headquarters for the 2017 Total Solar Eclipse in South Carolina and will be providing assistance and resources for various groups leading up to the events next August.

Eclipse Training:

  • The State Museum has been selected by the Space Grant Consortium, at the College of Charleston, to be the official midlands NASA training center.

  • The museum will have training kits available for institutions, schools and groups who are interested. More info soon!

Outreach and Education:

State Museum astronomy educators will serve as resident experts for knowledge and expertise on eclipse related subjects. These astronomy educators can and will be assisting in the following ways to various groups:

  • Outreach to education groups and school districts statewide.

  • Attractions and institutions seeking advice and knowledge on hosting eclipse events.

  • Providing information to the general public about the total solar eclipse.

Click HERE to learn more.

#2017Eclipse      #2017EclipseSCHQ


Throughout the next year the museum will be developing offers, programs, events and lots more around the 2017 Solar Eclipse. Stay updated with the latest information and museum eclipse offerings by joining our 2017 Solar Eclipse Enews!

Join the Eclipse List

solar-eclipse-map-2017-for-webWHAT IS A SOLAR ECLIPSE?

A solar eclipse occurs when the Moon passes between the Earth and the Sun, causing the Moon to temporarily cast its shadow on Earth. Solar eclipses happen about twice a year and total eclipses are only visible to those located in the path of the Moon’s shadow as it crosses the Earth. Columbia is located close to the center of this path of totality, which is less than 100 miles wide. A total solar eclipse has not been visible from the United States since 1979, which has some astronomy fans referring to this event as the “Great American Eclipse.”

If you are interested in learning more about this eclipse, visit for maps, eclipse history, videos and more.