Sky's Up July-September 2017 - Page 30

missouri illinois Millions of people will have already witnessed the awe-inspiring spectacle of the total solar eclipse by the time the Moon’s umbra sweeps into Missouri at 1:04 p.m. CDT. This impressive viewership will quickly go up as the shadow glides across the state for 18 minutes, cutting a large swath that includes portions of two major metropolises — Kansas City and St. Louis. With its central location and easy highway access, Missouri is sure to be a destination for eclipse chasers. Greatamericaneclipse.com estimates that between 323,000 and 1,291,000 people will travel to the areas of totality. When choosing where to view, it is important to remember that Kansas City and St. Louis each straddle the perimeter of the path of totality. In Kansas City, observers will have to be on the northern edge of the city to experience totality, while St. Louis observers will have to be on the southern edge of the city. If you will be in one of those areas, be sure to look closely at detailed resources that define where the path actually crosses through each of these locales. St. Joseph, which is about 55 miles north of Kansas City, lies on the centerline and will experience 2 minutes and 38 seconds of totality beginning at 1:06 p.m. The city has put up a comprehensive website with information on viewing locales. Free observing events will be held at the Rosecrans Memorial Airport and East Hills Mall. Almost all of the Interstate 70 corridor, which bisects the state, will experience totality. The highway provides easy access to Columbia, which is on the centerline and the state’s capitol, Jefferson City. Columbia’s 2 minutes and 37 seconds of totality will begin at 1:12 p.m. Large viewing events will be held at Cosmo Park and Gans Creek Recreation Area. COURTESY OF Michael Zeiler, www.GreatAmericanEclipse.com Jefferson City observers will be treated to 2 minutes and 29 seconds under the Missouri cities on the centerline of the path of totality: shadow beginning at 1:13 p.m. NASA • Boonville • Carrollton • Chamois • Columbia • De Soto • Franklin • Gerald • Gower will be broadcasting live from the steps • Hillsboro • Lathrop • Marshall • McBaine • Mokane • New Franklin • Norborne • Parkway • Pevely • Plattsburg • Rocheport • St. Clair • St. Joseph of Missouri’s Supreme Court building. It won’t take the Moon’s umbra long to traverse the path of totality that blankets the southernmost part of Illinois, but it will put on a big show during its quick visit, which begins around 1:17 p.m. CDT. The state has the honor of hosting the point of greatest duration. Weather permitting, this lucky locale in Makanda will bask in the full glory of the eclipsed Sun for 2 minutes and 40.2 seconds. Blue Sky Vineyard, which lies at this sweet spot, has four days of festivities planned to commemorate the occasion. Although being at the point of greatest duration buys you a few more seconds of totality, the biggest crowds will probably be drawn to Carbondale, which will offer 2 minutes and 37 seconds of totality beginning at 1:20 p.m. CDT. In addition to being a big player in this year’s eclipse, Carbondale will be a beacon for eclipse chasers again on April 8, 2024 - the date of the next total solar eclipse to pass over the contiguous U.S. This Illinois city of less than 27,000 people is being called “Eclipse City” because it lies at the point where the centerlines for both the 2017 and 2024 eclipse tracks cross. This year, a wealth of events will be happening at Southern Illinois University Carbondale (see details in inset box), but there are other viewing venues. The City of Carbondale and Carbondale Main Street are teaming up to host Shadowfest, a free, multi-day eclipse celebration on Washington Street that will feature lots of live music. For more information on scheduled events, click here. In the centerline city of Goreville, which will see 2 minutes and 40 seconds of totality, astronomers from the University of Illinois will be hosting a public viewing event at Goreville City Park. Greatamericaneclipse. com estimates that between 93,000 and 372,000 will travel to Illinois to witness the eclipse. 30 Sky ’ s Up Sky ’ s Up COURTESY OF Michael Zeiler, www.GreatAmericanEclipse.com event spotlight SIU Carbondale Eclipse Crossroads of America Southern Illinois University Carbondale will celebrate the 2017 eclipse beginning Aug. 19 and culminating on Aug. 21 with a large watch party at Saluki Stadium. Tickets are on sale now for the observing event, which will be hosted by Matt Kaplan of Planetary Radio. Attendees will be provided with safe solar viewing glasses. There will also be on-field programming developed in conjunction with the Adler Planetarium of Chicago. Visitors also will be able to see live coverage of the eclipse across America through the eyes of NASA, anchored by NASA Edge from the campus of SIU Carbondale. Other events at SIU include Eclipse Comic Con; an astronomy, science and technology expo; an arts and craft fair; and a festival/carnival with food and entertainment. For more information, click here. Illinois cities on the centerline of the path of totality: Carbondale • Cedar lake • Chester • Golconda • Goreville • Murphysboro • Simpson 31