Adults & Teens are invited to learn more about the eclipse with Murray State University's Dr. Matt Williams.
Monday, Aug. 21 - Eclipse stations and activities will be set up throughout the entire day at all three branches.
Totality: It's safe to take your glasses off now and look up. "So we should be able to get really neat photos, with our filters, of the sun being occluded by the moon".
The sky will darken, the temperature will drop a few degrees, birds will stop singing and start to roost, chickens stir and crickets will start to chirp.
The trickier situation will be if it is mostly cloudy or even partly cloudy overhead. The time of maximum coverage will be just after 2:30 - I've heard 2:39 p.m. here. "The previous one in the continental United States was in 1979". Where I'm at it will be about two minutes, 50 seconds, probably a little less here.
But - assuming you're not an astronomer - why should you make the same pilgrimage?
It's known in the trade as solar blindness or solar retinopathy - not total blindness, rather more like age-related macular degeneration, where you have trouble reading or recognizing faces, or lose those abilities altogether. "It's a chance to experience space science without having to leave home". "Awe-inspiring sights encourage empathy and generosity and group cohesion. and total eclipses always do that".
Astronomers from the U.S. Naval Observatory also got a lofty view: They tracked the eclipse from almost a mile in the air on the Navy dirigible dubbed Los Angeles, which lifted off from New Jersey and observed from Long Island.
So it's time to rustle up special eclipse eyewear to use August 21, when the US has its first full solar eclipse spanning coast to coast in 99 years. "I just want to be more aware", Rudnik said.
The total eclipse will only be visible in a narrow 67-mile stretch of the country running from OR to SC. Does that bother you?
"If I have to go to OR or Nebraska OR whatever, I'll do it". He's seen 27 in his lifetime, logging more than an hour of accumulated time in totality.
"They'll certainly react to the dark and temperature and react to environment, but to see whether they react to it in a meaningful way is hard to tell", said Steve Ross, director at Lincoln Park Zoo's Fisher Center for the Study and Conservation of Apes. We don't have a lot of public health issues in ophthalmology where we're really anxious about things that threaten the eye health of the population ... Or you can look indirectly with a pinhole projector - homemade will do, crafted from a shoebox, or grab a kitchen colander - that casts images of the eclipsed sun onto a screen at least 3 feet away.
Q: Can you use regular sunglasses? "Also make sure to watch for motorists who may be slowing or stopping and pedestrians standing near or on the roadway trying to view the event". You stand looking away from the sun and hold that plate up with one hand and hold the other further away with your other hand.
Depending on where you live, though, even under an overcast sky, you may still notice it getting darker as the eclipse approaches its peak for your location. Also, during the eclipse any normal shadow will reflect the activity of the eclipse.
Q: Are your students excited?
Definitely check out our TWN livestream, on TV and on the web, as we expect to be sending back footage from the path of totality, but there are also opportunities to perform some cool science during the eclipse.
Q: Would you give a fundamental "solar eclipse" definition?