The road to watching this summer’s solar eclipse starts in the library?

(CNN) — The solar eclipse, which will happen August 21, only happens about once every 375 years, according to NASA.

If your trips to the library are similarly infrequent, you may want to change that.

More than 2 million pairs of eclipse glasses, which allow you to watch the solar eclipse without damaging your eyes, are being distributed free at public libraries across the country.

During a total solar eclipse, the moon and the sun both appear to be about the same size from the ground.

According to NASA, this is a “celestial coincidence,” as the sun is about 400 times wider than the moon and about 400 times farther away.

Then, it is just basic geometry. When the Earth, moon and sun line up just right, the moon blocks the sun’s entire surface, creating the total eclipse.

While it may appear dark, watching the solar eclipse without the right eyewear can severely damage your vision.

A joint news release from the Space Science Institute, the Gordon and Betty Moore Foundation and Google says about 4,800 libraries will participate in giving out free glasses.

Space Science Institute Director Paul Dusenbery called the solar eclipse a great chance for people to understand a space phenomenon.

“[Many] are working together to help people understand and view the eclipse safely, and we are delighted to be part of this.”

Dusenbery says because solar eclipses are so rare, it’s a great opportunity for collaboration.

“This is a once in a lifetime opportunity for libraries and their communities to work together to participate in a celestial event of this scope.”

Space Science created a map of the libraries distributing glasses across the country.

WHERE TO GET GREAT AMERICAN SOLAR ECLIPSE GLASSES

Downtown Huntsville Library

  • Tuesday, August 15 – 11:30 a.m.
  • Join us for an informational session about the Great American Eclipse, which occurs on Aug. 21, 2017. Solar viewing glasses will be available for those who attend.

Decatur Public Library

  • Thursday August 3rd – 2:30 p.m.
  • This program will prepare those who attend to view the solar eclipse on August 21st. Learn the science behind the eclipse and when, how, and where to best view it safely through this interactive presentation for all ages. Held in the Youth Services Department at DPL, the Library will have eclipse glasses to give out to attendees as long as supplies last.

Florence-Lauderdale County Public Library

The Eclipse Is Coming! – with Dr. Mel Blake

  • Wednesday, August 16, 11:30 am
  • Get ready for the total solar eclipse, which is coming up on Monday, August 21! Dr. Mel Blake, Director of the UNA Planetarium and Associate Professor of Physics, will tell you everything you need to know about the eclipse. He’ll talk about the astronomy behind it, the best places to view the eclipse, and safety. All participants will receive a free pair of NASA-approved solar eclipse glasses. For more information, call 256-764-6564, ext. 28.

The Eclipse Is Coming! (For Kids and Families) – with Dr. Mel Blake

  • Thursday, August 17, 4:00 pm
  • *This event is geared toward kids and teens 9 and up and their families.*
  • Get ready for the total solar eclipse, which is coming up on Monday, August 21! Dr. Mel Blake, Director of the UNA Planetarium and Associate Professor of Physics, will tell you everything you need to know about the eclipse. He’ll talk about the astronomy behind it, the best places to view the eclipse, and safety. All participants will receive a free pair of NASA-approved solar eclipse glasses. For more information, call 256-764-6564, ext. 28.

Did we miss an event? Let us know and we will update the list.