Totality Awesome: College of Science Pre-Eclipse Event Schedule | College of Science
March 5, 2024

Totality Awesome: College of Science Pre-Eclipse Event Schedule

Get ready for the astronomical event of our lifetime with the UNT College of Science! Join us in the beautiful Environmental Education, Science and Technology (EESAT) building on the Denton campus for TOTALITY AWESOME, a total solar eclipse pre-party where guests are invited to come learn all about eclipses, participate in many family-friendly activities, and of course, pick up glasses to safely view the total eclipse on April 8!

To RSVP for either or both days (March 23 and 30), please fill out this form:

Please visit this page for more information about the events:

Totality Awesome Scheduled Activities

There are three scheduled main activities which will run simultaneously at 11 AM, 12:15 PM, and 1:30 PM. Tickets to these events, for the time of your choice, will be available at check-in but may be limited in supply depending on turnout, so plan to arrive closer to the 10:00 AM start time to ensure getting tickets to the ones you'd like to attend. These will be given out on a first-come, first-served basis, and we will not be able to accommodate any advanced ticketing. There will also be many open activities you can participate in (see next section)!

Totality Over Texas Sky Theater Planetarium Show (~45 minutes)
Showing Times: 11am, 12:15pm, and 1:30pm
Location: Room 150 - Sky Theater Planetarium

Totality Over Texas an immersive full-dome planetarium show about the once in a lifetime astronomical event happening over Texas in 2024! Total solar eclipses are a rare and beautiful phenomenon, and in this new planetarium show you will learn how solar eclipses happen, how to safely view one, and where watch the eclipse take place. This show itself runs 25 minutes and will be followed by a tour of Denton's evening sky. Due to the planetarium being dark once the show begins, no late entry can be provided due to safety concerns.

UNT and Astronomy Trivia (~45 minutes)
Times: 11am, 12:15pm, and 1:30pm
Location: Room 110

We'll be hosting UNT and astronomy themed trivia games in room 110 with lots of cool prizes to choose from. Triva will be administrated by Kahoot! and you will need a smart phone with a web browser to participate. We'll have lots of great prizes: meteorite shale from Arizona Meteor Crater, camping chairs, sunshades, umbrellas, planters, and other assorted items for the winners to choose from!

Eclipse Education and Research (~45 minutes)
Times: 11am, 12:15pm, and 1:30pm
Location: Room 125

UNT astrophysics expert Dr. Rebekah Purvis will share eclipse education in an engaging talk followed by a Q&A!

Totality Awesome Open Activities and Educational Stations

A variety of activities and educational stations will be open and spread throughout the Environmental Science Building Atrium, Exhibit Hall, and outside of the building.

Solar Observations with Telescopes
Photosphere and Chromosphere observations of the Sun will take place in the FS-11 Parking lot weather permitting. Photosphere observations of white light from the sun will allow you to observe sunspots while Chromosphere observations using our special solar telescope will allow you to see those along with lots of other detailed solar activity: spicules, solar prominences, maybe even solar flares!

If you are planning on viewing the solar eclipse through a telescope, we'll also provide information on how to safely do so with the proper filters.

These neat devices project the sun to a notecard where kids (and adults alike) can trace their observations of its visible sunspots. Learn about where sunspots come from and make observations on how they move over time.

Pinhole Projector and Pinhole Camera Demos
Learn to make your own pinhole projector and camera to view the solar eclipse and how they work!

Space-Time Demonstration
Wonder how gravity from the sun holds the planets in orbit? This fun and educational and interactive demonstration will provide that information and much more! Learn about a solar eclipse experiment that verified Einstein's General Theory of Relativity which established space-time.

Eclipse Citizen Science
Want to find out how you can help scientists gather data during the eclipse? Find out at this information booth!

Local Eclipse Information Booth
Meet organizations and groups hosting local eclipse events, and let them help you decide where and how to watch the eclipse on April 8!

Family Zone
Family-friendly arts and crafts, including a planisphere construction and instruction: Once constructed these devices allow you to set them for any given day and time to see what constellations will be visible! There will also be an eclipse-themed coloring station, as well as educational games and fun challenges brought to you by the Elm Fork Education Center!

Astronomy Student Research
Learn about the fascinating astronomy and physics research our students are conducting here at UNT.

Special Guests

Dr. John Quintanilla, Mathemagician Extraordinaire
The Dean himself of the UNT College of Science will be donning his mathemagician attire and wowing the crowd with mind-boggling math tricks. Happening on both the 23rd and 30th from 10:00am-noon in the EESAT Foyer.

Everyone's favorite UNT eagle mascot will be joining the fun from 10:30-11:30 on March 23, so come say hello and take a picture with Scrappy!

Dr. Zoe Ortiz, Archaeologist and Assistant Professor of UNT History (Presentation in Room 130, 12:15pm on March 30 only)
Convict Kings and Ancient Computers: Eclipses throughout Antiquity: Discover the pivotal role eclipses played in shaping the ancient world, influencing the destinies of dynasties and determining the outcomes of monumental battles. Ancient civilizations' profound fascination with celestial movements spurred the development of groundbreaking technologies, such as the Antikythera Mechanism, hailed as the world's "first computer," capable of remarkably accurate eclipse predictions. Join us as we unravel development of knowledge of how these celestial phenomena captivated the minds of ancient peoples and left an indelible mark on history.

Give to a College of Science Scholarship or Program and Receive a Special Eclipse Party Kit!

These events and ALL activities are FREE to the public, but we ask that guests consider making a donation of any amount to a College of Science scholarship or program in support of our incredible students! As a thank-you, we're putting together eclipse party kits complete with eclipse glasses, sunscreen, a reusable water bottle, educational materials, and lots of fun swag, all in a UNT College of Science cotton-canvas tote bag. These fun kits will be available to the first 200 donors at each event - just show your donation confirmation (sent to your email) at the registration table upon arrival!

Not sure where to make your gift? Here are some ideas!

UNT's Astronomy Program Support Fund
UNT's Astronomy Program supports undergraduate labs and outreach for the physics department. It manages two very unique facilities, the Rafes Urban Astronomy Center Observatory and the Sky Theater Planetarium, which our undergraduate students use for their astronomy laboratories.

COS Dean's Excellence Fund
This fund is used at the Dean's discretion to support student and departmental needs on a case-by-case basis, prioritizing scholarship and financial aid.

Make your donation here through UNT Advancement.