Monday, April 8, 2024

The Rice Creek Observatory, in partnership with the Syracuse Astronomical Society, is opening its doors to the public for the total solar eclipse — a once-in-a-lifetime experience. Oswego, NY lies near the center of the path of totality, providing visitors with 2.5 hours of eclipse watching and a long totality experience of 3 minutes and 27 seconds. We invite you to join us for a day of learning, excitement, and fun, immersed in the beautiful surroundings of Rice Creek Field Station. If you can't be with us in person, join our telescope streams on April 8!

Follow Along Live

Dr. Kamal Jabbour @PompeyObservatory will be streaming live from telescopes at Rice Creek Field Station on eclipse day beginning around 9 am.


Experience Highlights

Woman looks through a telescope during the day

Telescope Viewing

We'll have 7 telescopes on site, offering opportunities to view detailed images of the sun before, during, and after the eclipse through direct eyepiece viewing and projections onto small and large screens.

A group of people standing by an observatory dome wearing eclipse glasses

Eclipse Glasses

Each public ticket comes with a complimentary pair of eclipse glasses meeting the ISO 12312-2 safety standard. Glasses filter 99.999% of visible light.

A person gives a lecture

Engaging Activities

Enjoy streamed lectures from world-famous astronomers, streamed planetarium shows, family-friendly arts & crafts activities, and NASA live streams from the comfort of our building.

Full Event Details

Event timing

The Rice Creek Observatory's Eclipse Experience runs from 9 a.m. to 4:35 p.m. on Monday, April 8, 2024. Guests can arrive beginning at 8:55 a.m.

Eclipse timing

The eclipse begins at 2:08 p.m. and concludes at 4:35 p.m., lasting for about 2.5 hours. Totality (when the sun is completely blocked by the moon) occurs from 3:21:43 to 3:25:10 p.m., for a total of 3 min and 27 sec.


Event tickets are sold out. We encourage interested guests to visit the main SUNY Oswego campus to enjoy their eclipse-related activities.

Each ticket includes:

Telescope viewing

Observing the details of the sun through telescopes — before, during, and after the eclipse. Have you ever seen the sun through a telescope? With seven telescopes in use, including projections to screens, you'll have excellent opportunities to view details on the surface of the sun including sun spots and solar flares. For the 2.5 hours of the eclipse, organizers will closely monitor the moon's progress as it moves between the Earth and the sun. 

Expert guidance during the eclipse

Staff will announce the start of each phase, explain what is happening, and advise viewers when totality has begun and it is safe to remove eclipse glasses. Many fascinating parts of a solar eclipse occur just for brief moments and could be easily missed. Staff will help bring these moments to life for visitors. 

A complimentary pair of eclipse glasses*

Public tickets -- for those non-affiliated with SUNY Oswego -- include a complimentary pair of eclipse glasses that meet the ISO 12312-2 safety standard and are made in the USA. The vendor is, a company that is listed on the "safe suppliers" list of the American Astronomical Society.

*Because SUNY Oswego students, faculty, and staff are eligible for a free pair of eclipse glasses through the campus box office, these ticket types will not include a pair of glasses. When SUNY Oswego students, faculty, and staff place an order for multiple tickets including family and friends who are unaffiliated with the university, these "public" tickets will include complimentary glasses.

Live-streamed talks from world-famous astronomers

Rice Creek is an official live-stream venue for these SUNY Oswego-hosted talks that have limited in-person seating.

Talks begin at 9 am and conclude at 1 pm, and feature astronomers Dr. Sarbani Basu and Dr. Earl Bellinger (both from Yale University), Dr. Martin Hendry (University of Glasgow), and Dr. Anil Pradhan (Ohio State University). Dr. Lyn Blanchfield, a historian from SUNY Oswego, will also give a talk about "Eclipses in ancient civilizations."

These talks are sponsored by the Shineman Endowed Fund.

Live-streamed planetarium shows

Similarly, Rice Creek is an official live-stream venue for SUNY Oswego's eclipse day planetarium shows, which have limited seating. Join Dr. Natalia Lewandowska and her students in engaging and visually rich shows explaining the science behind the day's eclipse. Catch shows between 11 a.m. and 3 p.m.

Arts, crafts, and STEM activities

These family-friendly activities are good for kids -- or the young at heart! Guests can make custom pinhole viewers, "half plate" solar viewers to hold children's glasses in place, eclipse chalk art, solar prints, and more.

Outdoor exploration & recreation

Guests can explore Rice Creek's gardens, grounds, and five miles of trails. Spring is a wonderful time to see rare woodland wildflowers, resident and migratory birds, and other animals becoming more active like frogs and turtles. Bring your rain boots as spring trails are often muddy! Or, stay inside and enjoy watching the many visitors to Rice Creek's birdfeeders.

A commemorative photo station

Snap a photo with our custom event frame to remember this milestone event!

Food & beverages

Stop by the complimentary hot beverage station for coffee, tea, and hot chocolate -- open all day! 

Food will also be available for purchase from XO Taco's food truck featuring fresh tacos, quesadillas, and nachos. The menu includes vegan and gluten-free options.

A parking pass

Updated on Monday, Mar 25, 2024:

Free accessible parking passes will be provided to guests with mobility challenges allowing them to park right near the ADA-accessible Rice Creek building.

All other public guests may park in the EC-7 parking lot (at the intersection of Route 104 and Barnes Drive) and ride a special eclipse shuttle to Rice Creek. These ADA-accessible shuttles will leave the parking lot every ~10 minutes starting at 8:45 a.m., offering safe and smooth transportation to Rice Creek. Parking permits are not required in this lot on eclipse day.

SUNY Oswego students, faculty, and staff can ride the OSW-11 Green Route Shuttle beginning at 11 a.m. or can ride the special eclipse shuttle from the EC-7 parking lot

Commemorate your experience

A total solar eclipse is a once-in-a-lifetime experience. Guests can commemorate the experience by purchasing a swag bundle through a pre-sale ticket. The bundle includes:

  • A sustainable camping mug. The "deluxe" bundle ($25) includes an engraved, stainless steel MiiR-brand vacuum camp cup with a lid, ethically sourced and built to last a lifetime. The "basic" bundle ($10) includes a metal enamel camping mug. Use your mug during the event to help us go green and reduce waste!
  • A black carabiner - an easy way to keep track of your mug.
  • A 3" vinyl sticker with the Rice Creek eclipse logo.
Purchase Deluxe Swag Bundle Purchase Basic Swag Bundle

Guest Policies & Notices

Event guests are kindly asked to be aware of the following:

  • WiFi will not be available during the event. Most cellular data providers have service at Rice Creek, but a few do not. Check your provider's coverage map if you are concerned.
  • SUNY Oswego is a smoke-free campus. Guests may not smoke, vape, or use chewing tobacco.
  • Guests may not bring or use alcohol or illegal drugs.
  • Given the size and nature of this event, pets are not allowed.
  • Guests may not bring or use grills or fire-starting equipment.
  • Hunting, fishing, trapping, and unauthorized plant collecting are prohibited on the Rice Creek property.
  • Please avoid playing music during this event - Rice Creek biologists will be using acoustic monitoring to study wildlife responses to the eclipse.
  • Children under 17 must be accompanied by an adult responsible for their care and supervision.
  • Please practice "leave no trace" at Rice Creek - and leave areas as good or better than you found them.

Frequently Asked Questions

How do I get tickets?

Tickets are available (advance sale only) through the University Box Office.

Walks-ins can be accommodated but will not receive a pair of eclipse glasses. 

What should I bring?

Bring your printed tickets and (if applicable) your accessible parking pass. We also encourage you to bring warm layers, lawn chairs, a reusable water bottle, a hat, and sunscreen.

If you plan to walk the trails, you may want insect repellent as a tick prevention measure. Rain boots are highly encouraged as spring trail conditions are often muddy in spots.

Families with children are encouraged to bring books, games, and coloring books to keep little ones occupied while waiting. If your child has auditory sensitivities, you may want to bring earplugs or noise-reduction headphones for your child to use around totality, when groups of people often cheer or exclaim. Although food will be available, you may also want to bring your children's favorite snacks.

If you have binoculars or a camera, you may want to bring these to use during totality.  Please note that you cannot safely look through binoculars, a camera, a spotting scope, or a telescope at any other time during the eclipse - even while wearing eclipse glasses. Doing so will cause immediate and severe eye damage unless these items are equipped with a specialized solar filter. 

What shouldn't I bring?

Use of tobacco products is prohibited on SUNY Oswego property, including the use of vaping products. Please also avoid bringing alcohol, drugs, fire pits, grills, and weapons. Organizers also ask guests to avoid bringing speakers or playing music, as Rice Creek biologists will be recording natural sounds before, during, and after the eclipse to study how wildlife respond.

Please leave all pets at home, as this is a pet-free event.

Please note that hunting, fishing, and trapping are not allowed at Rice Creek Field Station.

Are dogs allowed?

Given the size and nature of this event, dogs (and all pets) are not allowed. Thank you for your understanding and compliance.

Service animals, kept on a short leash, are allowed. 

What if it's cloudy?

Although we remain hopeful for clear or partially clear weather, there are no guarantees. We hope you will join our event regardless. Together, all can witness the landscape dramatically darken during totality, and Rice Creek will bring the eclipse to you by streaming videos from clear viewing locations on big screens. With crafts and STEAM activities, food, streamed lectures, and streamed planetarium shows, it will still be a memorable day.

Are there refunds?

All ticket sales are final. Please do let us know if you know for sure you will not be attending.

Is your event accessible to those with disabilities?

The Rice Creek building is ADA accessible, as are the sidewalks near the pavilion which will be the main hub for viewing. Persons with accessible parking passes can park close to the Rice Creek building.

For additional information or questions, please contact us at or 315.312.6677.

Are there restroom facilities at Rice Creek?

Yes. We have two ADA-accessible bathrooms inside the Rice Creek building. We will also have several portable toilets located outside to supplement these.

Do you have a lactation room at Rice Creek?

Yes. We have a private shower room that will be designated as a lactation and baby changing area for the event. It has a chair, sink, and a flat surface (without safety straps) for changing.

How do I get to the event?

Rice Creek Field Station is located in Oswego, NY: 3.4 miles southwest of downtown Oswego, 1.5 miles south of SUNY Oswego's main campus, and 50 minutes north of Syracuse. 

March 25, 2024 Update

The parking location for this event has changed to Parking Lot EC-7 for regular (non-accessible) parking. A safe, ADA-accessible shuttle will bring guests to Rice Creek. This shuttle will run in a continuous loop every ~10 minutes beginning at 8:45 am and ending 4:45 pm. This change comes at the request of University Police, to alleviate congestion near the Rice Creek building. Ticket holders will not need a parking pass to park in this lot on eclipse day.

Parking & Transit Options by Ticket Type
  • Accessible parking: Park directly at Rice Creek Field Station, 193 Thompson Road in Oswego, beginning at 8:55 am. An accessible parking pass is required and will be emailed later today. If you need an accessible pass but do not receive one today, it means we have your ticket coded as a regular parking pass: please contact us to have this updated. 
  • General public: Park in Lot EC-7 (Campus Map, Google Maps) and ride the special eclipse shuttle to Rice Creek beginning at 8:45 am and running every ~10 minutes after that. The shuttle is safe and ADA-accessible.
  • SUNY Oswego student, faculty, and staff: Ride the Green Shuttle from campus (starting at 11 am) or park in Lot EC-7 and ride the special eclipse shuttle (starting at 8:45 am). 
What will traffic be like, and how can I prepare?

It's difficult to say. What many locations experienced during the 2017 eclipse was that traffic was manageable before the eclipse, but right after totality, roads were clogged with people leaving the same area at the same time. Sometimes traffic jams lasted for hours. Here are our tips to avoid or minimize traffic issues:

  • Make sure your vehicle is gassed up (or charged) before Monday, April 8.
  • Keep a few supplies in your vehicle, like extra water and snacks.
  • Plan to arrive early. The eclipse begins at 2:08 p.m. and totality begins at 3:21 p.m. Arriving just beforehand is a sure recipe for stress - and potentially a missed eclipse viewing opportunity if you encounter traffic. Our event begins at 9 a.m. and guests can arrive anytime afterward.
  • Don't rush to leave. Totality ends at 3:25 p.m., but the eclipse -- and our event -- runs until 4:35 p.m. Traffic will likely be worst right after totality. We encourage guests to wait 30-60 minutes before leaving and enjoy the end of the eclipse.
  • When you leave, using a navigation app like Waze or Google Maps may help you avoid congested routes.
Are there electric vehicle (EV) charging stations at Rice Creek?

Not yet!

Six Charge Point EV chargers are available on the SUNY Oswego main campus in the parking lot south of the Shineman Center - an 11-minute walk from Lot EC-7. Bear in mind that there will likely be significant demand for these chargers, and that guests are asked to charge for no longer than four hours at a time. 

There are two EVolve NY 150 kw fast chargers located in downtown Oswego, which could be used before or after our program. Again, bear in mind the probable increased demand on eclipse day.

Can I attend events on the main campus and Rice Creek on eclipse day?

Certainly! You can use the special eclipse shuttle to return to Lot EC-7 and from there, you can walk to the Shineman Center (an 11-minute walk). Faculty, staff, and students can also ride the the OSW-11 Green Route Shuttle. Since traffic may be backed up on eclipse day, we don't recommend cutting timing too close if you would like to be in a certain location for totality.

Tickets are needed for certain on-campus events but many (like the weather balloon launches) are open to the public. Visit to learn more.

How can I join in remotely?

Dr. Kamal Jabbour, who runs the Pompey Observatory and is a member of the Syracuse Astronomical Society, will be streaming from several telescopes at Rice Creek on eclipse day. 

These YouTube links (@PompeyObservatory) will go live by 9 a.m. on April 8, 2024:

  • Telescope Stream 1, featuring views from multiple telescopes (full-disc images of the sun, with white light and H-alpha filters, and zoomed in views of sunspots and other solar phenomena from Rice Creek's large 16" telescope)
  • Telescope Stream 2, featuring all-day, single-telescope coverage of the eclipse (full-disc image of the sun with white light filter)

Additional details from Dr. Jabbour:

* Stream 1 will show a montage of three telescopes, 16-inch Meade LX200GPS telescope (the large telescope in Rice Creek's dome) with white light filter for close-up looks at sunspots, a Lunt LS50T Hydrogen Alpha telescope for full-disk looks at solar prominences, flares, faculae and filaments (the 3Fs of x-ray imaging of the sun), and a ZWO Seestar S50 smart telescope with ND100000 neutral density white light filter for a full view of the sun. This stream will switch among the three telescopes as necessary. LIVE commentary will be provided by domain experts with over a century of combined expertise.

* Stream 2 will track the sun all day and through all stages of the eclipse with a silent DWARF II smart telescope equipped with a ND1000000 (an extra zero more than the Seestar!) filter.


Rice Creek Field Station
193 Thompson Road, Oswego, NY 13126

Syracuse Astronomical Society

SAS Syracuse Astronomical Society, Amateur Astronomy in Central New York.

Page image credits: NASA/Aubrey Gemignani, VA State Parks via Wikimedia Commons, Creative Commons Attribution 2.0