Solar Eclipse Celebrations in Central Iowa

Get ready! On August 21, 2017 people across the United States will see the sun disappear behind the moon. This great event is called a total solar eclipse. There are several places where you can celebrate and view the eclipse in central Iowa. In Des Moines, due to our location we will see a partial eclipse. The eclipse will hit maximum degree at approximately at 1:08 p.m. and will last 2-3 minutes.

Below is a list. Please let me know if I am missing your event.

Interested in learning more about the Great American Total Solar Eclipse? Check here!

Altoona Public Library

700 8th Street SW, Altoona

12:30 to 1: 30 p.m.

They will be passing out solar eclipse glasses as well as having crafts and activities in the meeting room. Learn about the science of the sun and how a solar eclipse works. If you have preschool age children, be sure to sign-up for their special, Sun Storytime at 10 a.m.

Bondurant Community Library 

104 2nd Street NE, Bondurant

11 a.m. to 2 p.m.

The library will provide free solar viewing glasses.

Clive Library and Parks & Recreation

Campbell Park; 12385 Woodlands Parkway

Noon to 2 p.m.

Bring your own lunch. Stories and music at 12:30 p.m. Eclipse viewing to follow. Eye protection provided. After the viewing enjoy a special treat! Please RSVP to so there is enough goodies and glasses for everyone.

Fort Des Moines Park, Shelter #3

7200 SE 5th Street, Des Moines

11:30 a.m. to 2:30 p.m.

Stop by Fort Des Moines park to see the eclipse safely through their telescope and special viewing glasses. There will also be some fun solar activities for the family!

Franklin Avenue Library

5000 Franklin Avenue, Des Moines

Noon to 1:30 p.m.

All participants are required to receive a mandatory safety viewing lesson and pair of protective glasses. Bring lawn chairs, blankets, snacks and water. If inclement weather, there will be a live feed of the eclipse from NASA in the meeting room.

Grimes Public Library

200 N. James Street, Grimes

11:30 a.m. to 1:30 p.m.

There will be fun and interactive learning stations for all ages!

Indianola Public Library 

207 N B Street, Indianola

12:30 to 2:00 p.m.

There will be eclipse glasses and there will be a big screen set up inside to view images and video from places where the eclipse is total.

Iowa State Capitol

West Terrace of the Iowa State Capitol Building

11:45 a.m. to 2:30 p.m.

Take your lunch to the Capitol to view this amazing event! Staff and volunteers from the Science Center of Iowa and Des Moines Astronomical Society will have telescopes with solar filters to view the partial eclipse safely.

Johnston Public Library

6700 Merle Hay Road, Johnston

Pick up free Solar Eclipse glasses beginning August 7 through August 21. They have 200 glasses available.

Pleasant Hill Library with Parks & Recreation 

5050 Doanes Park, Des Moines

11:30 a.m. to 1:30 p.m.

Join Mad Science of Iowa and Pleasant Hill for this free event. There will be free solar viewing glasses. There will be a corn dog vendor in the park following the show.

Reiman Gardens 

1407 University Blvd., Ames

11 a.m. to 3 p.m.

Looking for a great place to experience the Solar Eclipse of 2017 with others? Join us for this rare celestial event! The last total solar eclipse visible in North America was in 1979, and the next one, in 2024, will be far less visible. But it’s not safe to look directly at the sun. So bring your solar eclipse viewer, or DIY one at the Gardens. Bond with fellow eclipse enthusiasts, groove to our Solar Eclipse Playlist, and enjoy light refreshments as we celebrate the celestial splendor!

Preregistration is highly encouraged.

Free for Members, ISU Students
Free with admission for the General Public

Waukee Public Library 

950 Warrior Lane, Waukee

11:15 a.m. to 12:15 p.m.

There will be a short presentation and safe viewing instructions, followed by the opportunity to create your own solar color-changing bead jewelry. Registration is required here.

West Des Moines Public Library 

4000 Mills Civic Pkwy, West Des Moines

11:30 a.m. to 2:30 p.m.

The library will provide safe eclipse viewing glasses to the first 200 participants who arrive. They will meet in the Community Room to hand out the glasses then walk around the building to their “back yard” for viewing. Feel free to bring lawn chairs and blankets and make yourself comfortable! (Note: if the weather is cloudy or otherwise poor, the event will be canceled.)

Winterset Public Library 

123 N 2nd Street, Winterset

11:30 a.m. to 3 p.m.

The library will have safety solar-viewing glasses that you can keep as a souvenir, as well as fun solar activities for the family starting at 11:30 am! ** Bring a lunch and a blanket/lawn chair to hang out in the park.**

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