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Celestial show delights Castle Country

Thousands of tiny gaps between leaves on a nearby tree act like pinholes, projecting multiple images of the eclipse onto a house wall.
Eclipse gazing was a family event for many in the region.

By RICHARD SHAW
Sun Advocate publisher

The world didn't end on Sunday, nor were we mere mortals plunged into darkness for the rest of our lives on this planet.

Things just got a little shadowy about 7:30 p.m. when the annular eclipse - something no one on the planet will see again for about 11 years - occurred.

The hype on the solar eclipse (when the moon passes between the Sun and the Earth) was big, with the buildup going on for weeks. For some, the event met the publicity. For others, it was just another twilight before sunset.

While the eclipse on Sunday didn't provide the "Ring of Fire" view in this area (as it did in southwestern Utah) it did draw a lot of attention from people. Whole neighborhoods of people turned out in various places around the county to watch it.

"Wow, that's really cool," was heard from many as they watched through protective glasses, through pinhole devices or through welding visors. While it was a very pleasant Sunday evening, and often people are outdoors, more than usual appeared.

As the eclipse progressed, the birds around the area drew quiet and strange shadows filtered down on various surfaces. Other than the light being odd a glance directly at the sun would have seemed not much different than any other day. But when filtered through leaves and trees small round circles could be seen on driveways or on horizontal surfaces.

Many were awestruck by the event. It wasn't hard to imagine that in a less scientifically sophisticated time people gazed in fear, thinking the world was ending.

A full eclipse (one where the moon totally covers the sun) will take place in 2017. Unfortunately that won't be seen here. Its track will run from the northwest through the southeast, with this area only being able to see part of it like the one on Sunday. However, that total eclipse could be viewed in places not that far away, such as in Wyoming or Idaho.

But for now the west was the place to see one of the most interesting events that human eyes (through protective lenses of course) can behold.




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