The 2017 Solar Eclipse

About the Eclipse

On August 21, 2017 there will be a total solar eclipse on a narrow path across the United States. A total solar eclipse occurs when the new Moon passes between the Sun and the Earth. The event creates fascinating lighting and allows viewers to see the corona of the Sun.

Gallatin, Tennessee will be one of the best spots in the country to view the total eclipse with totality lasting two minutes and forty seconds. Eclipse viewing in the area will be from noon-3 p.m. Totality will occur at 1:27 p.m.

Of course, viewing is dependent on the weather. Overcast skies may make eclipse viewing marginal.

Overview of Eclipse occuring in Tennessee

Watch the Solar Eclipse With Us

Volunteer State Community College is hosting a free eclipse watching event on our campus in Gallatin from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. It is open to everyone. We will have educational presentations, live video viewing of the eclipse in other parts of the country, live narration during the totality, and fun science exhibits for kids and adults. The activities will be held both outside and in air-conditioned buildings. While there will be limited outdoor seating, attendees should be prepared to sit on the lawn. People are encouraged to bring blankets or lawn chairs. There will be room for picnicking. We will also have food and beverages for sale. The campus has plenty of bathrooms and heat relief zones (seating areas) in many buildings.

Parking is also free. Buses and RV's are welcome, but there will be no overnight parking, before or after the event. Parking lots open at 8 a.m. Once the lots are full, the campus will be closed to new entrants. Entry is first come, first served. The campus will close at 6pm on the day of the Eclipse. No alcohol will be allowed in vehicles or on campus. There is no smoking on campus. This is designed as a family event.

We need to have an idea of how many people will be attending. We have set-up an Eventbrite registration web page. We ask that people register on that page and let us know how many people will be attending in their group. The ticket that is emailed back to each person signing-up does not guarantee admission. Admission will be first-come, first-served. You don’t need to bring the ticket to the event. The registration is simply for our count of attendees.

Event Schedule

  • This event will run from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m.
  • Most events will be on and around the Thigpen Library lawn
  • Food and drinks will be available for purchase at the Vol State Café in the Wood Campus Center. They open at 8 a.m. and close at 4 p.m. It is fine for people to bring in outside food and beverages. Alcohol is not allowed on campus.

8 a.m.

  • Parking opens to the public

8 a.m. to 3 p.m.

  • Information tables open and free bottled water while it lasts. On and around the Thigpen Library lawn. Free eclipse viewing glasses while they last.

10 a.m. to 1 p.m.

  • Eclipse video viewing from other locations – Auditorium in Caudill Hall

10 a.m. – 3 p.m.

  • Events are in the Pickel Field House

1:15 p.m. to 1:45 p.m.

  • Narration of the eclipse through totality – Thigpen Library Lawn

1:27 p.m.

  • Totality occurs at 1:27 p.m.

6 p.m.

  • The campus closes to the public at 6 p.m.