Indiana Forest Alliance is hosting a FREE 2024 Solar Eclipse viewing event in Yellowwood State Forest and Bloomington Tibetan Mongolian Buddhist Cultural Center.

Festivities will begin with a warm-up event on Sunday, April 7 at Yellowwood Lake where IFA will be offering guided hikes on Forest Ecology and other forest and cosmological educational topics.


The second day (eclipse day) will begin at 11 a.m. on Monday, April 8 at the Tibetan Mongolian Buddhist Cultural Center and Kumbum Chamste Ling Monastery off of Snoddy Road in Bloomington, with the monks performing a medicine Buddah Puja,a special awareness ceremony and ritual honoring and promoting inner and planetary healing. The Puja will start around 1:30 p.m., pause during the time of complete darkness, and then finish. Guided hikes will be offered for solemn observance of nature and to observe the special interactions of the wildlife during a solar eclipse. The public is invited to attend from 11 a.m. to 5 p.m. and bring chairs, blankets, and snacks to observe the wonders of nature and our miraculous Earth. Viewing glasses will be available for FREE for the viewing of the eclipse.

This landmark day will also include a time capsule installation in collaboration with Artists for Environmental Restoration featuring conservation-themed art by local artists. This capsule is set to be opened at the next solar eclipse visible from the United States, in August 2044. IFA is seeking local artists to submit work for the solar eclipse. Submission may be sent to Steven Stewart at stevenstewart@indianaforestalliance.org

IFA Executive Director Jeff Stant said this unique two day event is made possible thanks to a generous grant from the Simons Foundation as part of its In the Path of Totality initiative with the Indiana University Center for Rural Engagement.

“This two-day event set in the unparalleled beauty of Yellowwood State Forest is truly a one-of-a-kind opportunity to view the eclipse,” said Stant. “IFA would like to extend a special thank you to the Simons Foundation, IU Center for Rural Engagement, Tibetan Mongolian Buddhist Cultural Center and Kumbum Chamste Ling Monastery and all the staff, volunteers and vendors who have helped make this event a reality. We look forward to welcoming Hoosiers and visitors from all parts of the country to Yellowwood State Forest to share this experience and our love and appreciation of Indiana’s native forests.”

IFA Hoosier National Forest Director Steven Stewart said Indiana’s position in the path of totality for this eclipse gives Hoosiers and visitors the chance to witness something truly remarkable.

“Solar eclipses and the movements within the cosmos have influenced cultures in Indiana and around the world for millennia, possibly since the beginning of human history,” said Stewart.  “Our ancient ancestors looked to the heavens with awe, wonder and curiosity as we will at this Solar Eclipse. We are truly lucky to experience such a rare occasion in our lifetime.”

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