Fun with the sun

Local residents: To view or not to view?

eclipse prep 2

Riverside seventh-grader Audrey Kopus passes a styrofoam “moon” in front of a lamp “sun” that casts a simulated eclipse shadow on the face of Brianna Kindle during a hands-on demonstration in Becky Lentz’s science class Thursday. (EXAMINER PHOTOS | REUBEN MEES) 


Riverside Schools and the Knowlton Library are going all out with viewing parties, while Bellefontaine City Schools will be keeping students indoors Monday afternoon.

Meanwhile, some residents are making trips south that will take them into the narrow strip known as the “path of totality,” in which the sky will darken as the umbra of the moon falls squarely over viewers. For others, an eclipse is just a general astronomical occurrence that happens to some degree somewhere around the globe twice a year.

In Logan County, the 2017 eclipse will be a 0.9 magnitude partial eclipse, which means that it will never be total. Eye protection must be worn at all times and protective glasses are in short supply.

In a little less than seven years, however, on April 8, 2024, Logan County will be along the path of totality — a once-in-a-lifetime occurrence — and residents who don’t get to experience this year’s partial eclipse may have a chance to catch a total eclipse if the weather cooperates.

Riverside Schools’ staff and students are going all out for Monday’s celestial phenomenon, when viewing conditions are expected to be ideal.

“The whole school will shut down and we’ll go outside and make this a memorable event,” Riverside High School Principal Kelly Kauffman said. “We’re allowing the older students to bring lawn chairs and blankets and we’re going to spend the whole afternoon outdoors.”

Kauffman ordered 750 pairs of ISO-certified glasses that she hopes will be enough to cover all students and staff in all grade levels.

While the high school students will get to spend most of the afternoon outside, the younger students will be taken outside at their teachers’ discretion as the 2:30 p.m. peak approaches.

Second-grader Aiden Fout, whose mother, Hillary purchased additional glasses for second-grade classes, said he is stoked about getting to see his first eclipse, but warned of the dangers.

“My mind is going all over,” he said. “I’m super excited. You don’t want to look at it because it’ll burn your eyes out.”

Read complete story in Saturday's  Examiner
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