By Dee Langston on August 20, 2017Northeastern North Carolina will not quite be in the path of the total solar eclipse on Monday, but the area will see about 90 percent of it. And skies are forecast to be clear for viewing.
NASA mapping shows the peak of the eclipse on the Outer Banks on either side of 2:50 p.m., depending on your exact location.
The Outer Banks lies on the northern edge of the swath where 90 percent of the sun will be covered when the moon passes by.
Jockey’s Ridge State Park is planning a Solar Eclipse Party at one of the tallest vantage points in the central Outer Banks.
Glasses will be distributed starting at 1 p.m. Bring water, beach chairs, beach blankets or towels. The partial eclipse begins at 1:23 p.m., is at the maximum at 2:49 p.m. and ends at 4:08 p.m.
Sponsored by NC Space Grant and SC Space Grant, the gathering is free.
The North Carolina Aquarium on Roanoke Island will host an Eclipse Party from 11:30 a.m. to 3:30 p.m. with games, activities and a viewing of the astronomical phenomenon.
“All across the country, people are going to be joining in to watch the solar eclipse, and we are excited to be a part of the occasion,” said Dia Hitt, the aquarium’s education curator.
At the aquarium, activities will include construction of pinhole eclipse projectors.
Guests may also watch a program on the aquarium’s Science on a Sphere display inside Neptune’s Theater. The sphere, provided in partnership with the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, projects detailed imagery about the world and the universe.
The eclipse viewing at the aquarium will be held from 1:25 until 4:10 p.m., with maximum eclipse coverage at 2:51 p.m. The aquarium will have a limited amount of viewing glasses available on a first-come first-served basis, and will also provide materials and instruction for creating pinhole projectors.
At the Currituck County Library in Barco, those who attend will be able to play games such as Space Bingo, perform science experiments, and enjoy space-themed snacks. When it is time to view the eclipse, protective glasses will be provided by the library staff.
Admission to the event at the Barco library is free; at the aquarium, the Eclipse Party is included with regular aquarium admission.
For more information, call the Currituck County Library in Barco at (252) 453-8345 or visit the library’s Facebook page. Information about the aquarium’s program may be found at The North Carolina Aquarium on Roanoke Island.
Vision experts warn eclipse viewers to never look directly at the sun without official eclipse protective eye wear. If protective glasses designed for viewing an eclipse aren’t available, experts recommend using a homemade pinhole projector to view the moon’s passage between the earth and the sun.
Even a few seconds of looking directly at the sun may cause permanent eye damage. Watching the eclipse through glasses that aren’t certified to protect your eyes can also lead to serious damage.