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Solar Eclipse

What to know and how to prepare for the Solar Eclipse
Finally, the moment is upon us. The Total Solar Eclipse of 2017 will soon stretch its 62-mile path across the earth, a rare celestial event that won’t happen again in Oregon until 2108. Whether you’re a serious astronomy geek or an everyday lover of the outdoors, the two minutes of mid-morning darkness will be breathtaking.  





Cities closest to the path of totality have the best viewing opportunities. The path of totality will begin in the remote Pacific Ocean north of Hawaii and first make landfall on the Oregon Coast, just north of Depoe Bay, at 10:15 a.m. From there the moon’s shadow will race east toward Salem. Continuing east, the shadow of the moon will pass over Madras, Mitchell, John Day and Baker. Due to the rapid movement of the moon around the Earth, the moon’s shadow will traverse the entire state of Oregon in only 12 minutes.  
Halfway through the event, anyone within a roughly 70-mile-wide path from Oregon to South Carolina will experience a brief total eclipse, when the moon completely blocks the sun’s bright face for up to 2 minutes 40 seconds, turning day into night and making visible the otherwise hidden solar corona — the sun’s outer atmosphere — one of nature’s most awesome sights. Bright stars and planets will become visible as well.


Prepare 7-10 days ahead…
  • Purchase your solar eclipse glasses.
You must use eclipse glasses.  These glasses should be worn whenever even a part of the sun can be seen; only during totality when the moon has slid fully in front of the sun is it safe to take off one’s eclipse glasses. In fact, observing those brief seconds of totality without eclipse glasses is encouraged because it’s possible during this time to see the outer atmosphere of the sun and its streamers, loops and plumes of gas.
Sunglasses will not properly protect your eyes.  Homemade filters or ordinary sunglasses, even very dark ones, are not safe for looking at the sun.  “It’s really imperative you don’t look at the sun directly with your eyes [without eclipse glasses],” to avoid permanent damage to your retinas from the sun’s ultraviolet radiation. Only during the moment of totality can you take it off. Time it to be safe. Always supervise children using looking up at the sky. When you do remove your glasses, turn away — do not remove it while looking at the sun.  Always supervise children using solar filters.  Stand still and cover your eyes with your eclipse glasses or solar viewer before looking up at the bright sun. After glancing at the sun, turn away and remove your filter — do not remove it while looking at the sun.

  • Cameras, Binoculars and telescopes
Do not look at the uneclipsed or partially eclipsed sun through an unfiltered camera, telescope, binoculars, or other optical device. Similarly, do not look at the sunhrough a camera, a telescope, binoculars, or any other optical device while using your eclipse glasses or hand-held solar viewer — the concentrated solar rays will damage the filter and enter your eye(s), causing serious injury. Seek expert advice from an astronomer before using a solar filter with a camera, a telescope, binoculars, or any other optical device.
  • Stock up
  • Highways, shops and visitor destinations will be crowded — very crowded. Stock up because you may not be able to get out and about the day before, during and after the Aug. 21 event. Be patient in traffic and carry water and supplies with you — don’t rely on your cell phone or GPS.
  • Get your grocery shopping done. Not only will you beat the crowds, but this gives our stores time to restock.
  • Fuel up your tanks (gas, propane, etc).
  • Pick up your prescriptions and/or medical supplies.
  • Get doctor/dentist appointments out of the way. Traffic will start getting heavy the Thursday prior to the eclipse and could remain heavy until the following Wednesday.
  • Get cash (ATM’s may run out of cash or be hindered by slow internet).
  • Be prepared for slow internet - you might not be able to stream your Netflix at peak times!
  • Recognize trash service, U.S. mail, and other delivery services may be delayed.
  • Understand traffic will be heavy, and lines in stores and restaurants may be long.
Remember, this is a once in a lifetime event for our community - once the Eclipse begins, forget about the crowds and the inconveniences and just enjoy this wondrous event!
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