Eclipse 2017 – Blocking the Sun while Uniting People
August 21, 2017
For weeks, months even, all we heard about was the upcoming solar eclipse. The craze was real – where would YOU be when the eclipse happened? Who was in the path of totality? If you weren’t, what percentage of the sun would be covered? Where could you buy the proper glasses so you don’t burn your eyes?
I’ll have to admit – I’m a sucker for things like these. Especially in the current state of affairs in our world and all of the negativity we are surrounded by, it was nice to be united for such a unique occurrence. People across the country, regardless of race, gender, sexuality, ethnicity, age, or religious beliefs, could all come together to celebrate the phenomenon; and it’s exactly what we needed right now. Hotels and tourist destinations in the path of totality experienced booms in business. It’s such a great thing to think about.
The Eclipse in Syracuse
Around the country, museums, schools, libraries, and other venues offered FREE viewing parties; some even provided special glasses required to view the eclipse safely while other taught you how to make a viewer. I had the opportunity to join the Syracuse University community on the campus quad, in an event held by Holden Observatory and the Physics Department. I was amazed to see how many people gathered to witness the eclipse. Walking through the crowd, I saw people with telescopes, special glasses, make-shift cereal box viewers, and other gadgets. People were sharing whatever photos they could get in an effort of openness and excitement. Here in Syracuse, clouds intermittently blocked the sun; but that made the experience even better because we could get some fantastic photos of the crescent glowing behind the clouds.
Was it worth it? Heck yes. I’m so glad I was able to step away from my day job and participate with the rest of the campus community to witness the eclipse. It’s a rare occurrence. And the energy that people had was contagious! The walk from my office to the quad and back was filled with people sharing the experience with strangers on the street. If you got to experience the eclipse yourself, congrats. It you missed it, start planning for 2024! In the meantime, enjoy whatever meteor showers and lunar eclipses come along the way.
Looking for other ways to enjoy Syracuse University? Check out my orange bucket list and see what things you can cross off!