See October's Eclipse (safely!)

September 25, 2023

See October’s Eclipse (safely!)

UPDATED: Oct. 6, 2023

On Saturday, October 14, 2023, worlds will align. The Moon will pass between the Sun and the Earth, casting a shadow on our planet that will sweep across North America. For viewers in a narrow path from Oregon through Texas and into Central America and Brazil, the Moon will appear to almost cover the sun, leaving a thin ring of sunlight around its edge: an annular (or ring) eclipse. 

For most of the rest of the continent, the alignment isn’t perfectly central. The Moon will cover only a part of the Sun, resulting in a partial eclipse. NO matter where you are, a solar eclipse is still a fascinating chance to see the solar system’s motion in action in real time


The Sun is very bright, and if you look at it too long you will damage your eyes permanently. It’s no more dangerous during an eclipse than it is any other time, but people don’t usually stare at the sun for three hours except during an eclipse. A partial or annular eclipse is still too bright to safely observe without special eye protection.

So how can you observe the eclipse safely? 

Other safe solar filters include a #14 welder’s glass (ONLY #14, the lower numbers are not safe for solar viewing), and special solar filters sold by telescope stores. Again, avoid online dealers you’ve never dealt with before. No other material is safe, despite what you might read online. You can’t use dark glass, mylar balloon material, exposed photographic film, or CDs to watch the eclipse.


Two pairs of eclipse glasses on a glass shelf below two racks full of unfolded eclipse glasses. One pair features a design with a close-up of the sun, and the other features a solar eclipse. The Manitoba Museum logo is on the arm of the glasses.

The safest way to observe the eclipse is by using special solar eclipse glasses from a certified dealer. You can get them at the Manitoba Museum’s giftshop for $3 a pair (discounts for class sets of 25 are available). You can email the shop to reserve your pair, or arrange for class sets for your school. Do not order them online at this point, as unfortunately there are more fake eclipse glasses than real ones available this close to the event. Saving a dollar while risking your eyesight for the rest of your life is not worth it. (Besides, all money spent at the Museum’s Shop goes to support our programs and activities!)

Buy your eclipse glasses today!

If you’d like a closer view of the eclipse, you can follow these instructions to make a solar projector out of a pair of binoculars and some cardboard.

Another safe way to view the eclipse is to join an eclipse party. Many astronomy clubs, planetariums, and science centres will host events to share the eclipse with their audiences. In Winnipeg, the various astronomical groups are joining forces to host a free eclipse viewing party at Assiniboine Park in the Kitchen Garden, just outside The Leaf. Solar glasses will be available, and safely-filtered telescopes will provide close-up views as the Moon moves across the sun’s face.

Circumstances for Manitoba

Eclipse PhasesTime
Eclipse Start10:28 am CDT
Eclipse Maximum11:42 am CDT
Eclipse End1:00 pm CDT

Depending on where you are, you will have a different view of the eclipse. In general, locations in the southwestern part of the province are closer to the center line, and will have a longer eclipse with more of the Sun covered. In Winnipeg, the solar disk will be about 40% covered, with a duration of just over two-and-a-half hours. In contrast, Churchill, Manitoba will only see the sun about 25% covered.

To get a detailed set of times for your location, you can visit this site and enter your location in the search bar at right. It will calculate exactly when the eclipse begins for your location and what you can expect to see.

Scott Young

Scott Young

Planetarium Astronomer

Scott is the Planetarium Astronomer at the Manitoba Museum, developing astronomy and science programs. He has been an informal science educator for thirty years, working in the planetarium and science centre field both at The Manitoba Museum and also at the Alice G. Wallace Planetarium in Fitchburg, Massachusetts. Scott is an active amateur astronomer and a past-President of the Royal Astronomical Society of Canada.