Local eclipse viewing attracts hundreds

Patrons await the Darien Library’s solar eclipse event beginning at 1. The 30 solar eclipse glasses are spoken for already. — Kristen Riolo

Patrons await the Darien Library’s solar eclipse event beginning at 1. The 30 solar eclipse glasses are spoken for already. — Kristen Riolo

For local residents that would like to experience today's solar eclipse without having to leave town, you can head to the Jacksonville Public Library for a special viewing event.

Several groups of people were gathered on the front steps to watch the event, but more than half of them didn't have protective eyewear.

With the help of her husband, a physicist, the family built their own solar eclipse viewing boxes using cardboard and cereal boxes, toilet paper tubes and aluminum foil.

The rare event was so popular the library couldn't keep up with demand.

The solar eclipse, the first since 1918 to stretch from the Pacific to Atlantic Oceans in the United States, is expected to last through 2:40 p.m. People wanted to know if they could get glasses.

"It's just a nice surprise of how many people came". While elsewhere along the path of totality, the sky grew decidedly dark, in Great Bend at the peak of the eclipse, the light resembled that of early evening, and the lingering cloud cover lent to the feeling of impending rain.

On Monday afternoon, about 500 people stood in line, hopeful to get a pair of the protecting glasses, Taylor said.

Northeast Ohio will enjoy a front-row seat to a total solar eclipse on April 8, experts says.

"I think it's cool because it hasn't happened in so long and we get to actually watch it", McKenzie said. Everyone in North American could see the partial solar eclipse.

"It's cool for her because she understands the whole thing and how it's happening", she said. "So it's so wonderful to actually see it with our glasses". Those snacks included Sunny D, Capri Sun, Milky Way candy bars, Eclipse gum, moon cakes and more.

"They were insane. There were lines outside the front every single day we came", Cheryl said.

Somewhere else in the crowd another child could be heard shouting, "It looks like Pac-man!" and yet another, "I can see the moon moving!"

Nearly 400 people gathered at the Ely Public Library in hopes of getting a view of the solar phenomenon.

Altoona Area Public Library had glasses donated too, but a very limited supply.

"This is really our first endeavor to show the community that this is a meeting place for more than just books - we can hold major events here", he said.

Betzwieser said she had friends who were in Arizona, Kentucky, South Carolina and Nevada who were probably viewing the eclipse.

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