Science and music to mark total solar eclipse with special program

Chemistry prof Jim Yoder works with a student in the organic chemistry lab.

To mark the rare occurrence of the Aug. 21 total solar eclipse path over North America, the Hesston College music and science areas will team up for a special presentation at 6:45 p.m., Saturday, August 19, at Hesston Mennonite Church on the Hesston College campus. The program is free and open to the public.

The special programming will feature eclipse-themed music by the Bel Canto Singers and a TED-style talk about the solar event by natural science professor Dr. Jim Yoder.

The last total eclipse viewed from the contiguous United States was on Feb. 26, 1979, passing through states in the northwest as far east as North Dakota. The next total eclipse will be on April 8, 2024, with totality visible from Texas to Maine.

On the day of the eclipse, more than 75 Hesston College science, math and music students will present the same program at Shickley (Neb.) Public School, which is located in the 70-mile wide path of eclipse totality, before viewing the eclipse with K-12 students, Hesston College alumni and community members.