Professional and amateur astronomers in North America, Asia and other parts of the world are preparing for a partial solar eclipse on Sunday.

"Here in the Southwest, we're going to get a fantastic view," says Adam Block, program coordinator for the University of Arizona's Mt. Lemmon SkyCenter. "It looks like it'll be clear, most importantly."

The eclipse should provide entertainment and fascination to people of all ages, but Block says it's imperative that people not look at the sun with their bare eyes.

The sky center will host program for the occasion beginning in the afternoon and extending through sunset, which is expected to be the peak viewing time.

Special viewing devices to protect the eyes will be available at the sky center. Block says another similar viewing tool is a rectangular piece of No. 14 welder's glass.

Other local organizations also are holding events for the eclipse, including Kitt Peak National Observatory, southwest of Tucson, and Flandrau Science Center on the UA campus.

"Solar eclipses happen two or three times a year easily, but not necessarily in the place in which you live," Block says. "Often times people have to travel to get under the shadow to enjoy it."