TJC Science Center is organizing a week of events before the total solar eclipse

By | April 1, 2024

Mar. 31—The TJC Earth and Space Science Center with the Hudnall Planetarium will offer a host of special events during the week leading up to the historic total solar eclipse on Monday, April 8.

Eclipse-themed planetarium shows Tuesday, April 2 through Saturday, April 6

The Hudnall Planetarium schedule will include two dome shows to prepare the community for what to expect during the solar eclipse. Visitors will receive one free solar eclipse glasses with every ticket purchased, while supplies last.

Dome shows include:

—“Totality Over Texas” — 1:00 PM and 3:00 PM Tuesday, April 2 and Saturday, April 6 — Texas is where you can see the total solar eclipse on April 8. Total solar eclipses are rare and beautiful phenomena, and the next one to cross the US will occur in 2045 – so don’t miss this one.

—“Eclipse: The Sun Revealed” — Tuesday, April 2, 2:00 PM and 4:00 PM through Saturday, April 6, as well as Saturday, April 6 at noon. On April 8, the moon will cast its shadow on Earth and follow a narrow path across North America. Learn how to safely observe eclipses, why they happen, and how the study of eclipses has advanced science.

Admission to individual dome shows is $7 for adults and $5 for children, students and seniors 65 and older. Day passes are also available for $12 for adults and $9 for children, students and seniors.

Tickets can be purchased at

The science center is located at 1411 E. Lake St. on TJC’s central campus. Parking is free.

School field trips are available Tuesday through Friday only for $100 per group, and online reservations are required at

NASA astrophysicist Dr. Hakeem Oluseyi will speak on April 4

Dr. Hakeem Oluseyi has three college degrees, including a Ph.D. in physics from Stanford University. He is an astrophysicist, author, STEM teacher, multi-patented inventor, science journalist, TV personality, science communicator and inspirational speaker.

His life story is more impressive. Oluseyi grew up in some of America’s roughest neighborhoods, learned to survive on the streets and still taught himself Einstein’s Theory of Relativity from an old set of encyclopedias.

On television, Oluseyi was a featured astrophysics commentator on Science Channel’s “How the Universe Works” and as a judge on the Netflix series “Baking Impossible.” In 2017, while working at NASA Headquarters in Washington, DC, he led public coverage of the solar eclipse. He will report on the total solar eclipse on ABC’s Good Morning America on Monday, April 8.

On Thursday, April 4, Oluseyi will share his experiences and insights as a presenter of TJC’s Powerful Voices speaker series on central campus.

During an afternoon session, he will speak to TJC students about overcoming adversity and pursuing dreams that may seem unattainable. Students in attendance include participants in the TJC Promise and TRiO programs. Thanks to the generosity of the insurers, every student will receive a copy of Oluseyi’s book.

That evening at 7 p.m., he will share his story and highlight a new focus on space travel during a discussion at the Hudnall Planetarium, located in the TJC Earth and Space Science Center,

The entrance fee for the evening event is €20. Proceeds from the tickets will support future speakers that mutually benefit TJC students and the community. Tickets can be purchased before the event at or in the science center lobby.

ETSO presents ‘Totality of The Sun’ performances on April 6

In collaboration with TJC, the East Texas Symphony Orchestra will present two special performances in honor of a total solar eclipse.

In ‘Totality of the Sun’, ETSO will perform heavenly musical selections, accompanied by beautiful images of the science center.

The performances are on Saturday, April 6 at 4:00 PM and 7:30 PM in Wise Auditorium, located in the Rogers Palmer Performing Arts Center on TJC’s central campus.

Tickets can be purchased at

Star Party Saturday April 6

Also on April 6, the TJC science center will host its monthly Star Party Saturday event, from 8 to 9:30 p.m.

Visitors can find plenty of telescopes to view in the center’s courtyard, weather permitting, and area astronomy enthusiasts will be on hand to help navigate the night sky.

Free planetarium shows are also offered in the Dome Theater at 8:00 PM, 8:30 PM and 9:00 PM

Admission is free, but reservations are recommended at

Eclipse viewing parties in Tyler, April 8

TJC has partnered with Visit Tyler to promote numerous eclipse viewing locations around the city on April 8.

Locations such as Caldwell Zoo, Discovery Science Place, True Vine Brewing Company, Tyler State Park and many more will host their own special viewing events.

For more information, visit

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