ESCANABA, Mich. (WZMQ) – On Saturday, October 14, an annular solar eclipse will be partially visible in the Upper Peninsula. The Escanaba Public Library is giving the community a way to view it safely.
“An annular eclipse happens when the moon is in its farthest part of the orbit away from the earth, so when it comes between the earth and the sun, you can still see what they call the ‘ring of fire’ around it,” said library assistant Jane Lynch. “It doesn’t completely cover the sun because it’s so far away from the earth. It’s going to be partially visible in Escanaba around 12:56 p.m.”
Looking at a solar eclipse with the naked eye can cause serious harm.
“Regular sunglasses are not safe to wear when looking at an eclipse,” Lynch said. “You would actually need a welder’s helmet or something to safely look at an eclipse.”
Thanks to funding from the Nasa@ My Library project and the Gordon and Betty Moore Foundation, the STAR Library Network has provided libraries across the country with 5 million pairs of eclipse-safe glasses. Wearers will be able to look at the annular eclipse without risk of eye damage.
Lynch hopes inviting the community to pick up their glasses will also get more people involved and interested in the library.
“We’re offering these glasses for free so people can enjoy them, and then they can come in and get books about the eclipse or they can look up articles about eclipses,” Lynch said. “It might be just a fun little gateway to get in the library and say, ‘Hey, what else can I learn about this?'”
Supplies are limited to two pairs of glasses per household. The Escanaba Public Library will give out free glasses once again before the total solar eclipse on April 8, 2024.
To pick up glasses for the annular solar eclipse, visit the Escanaba Public Library at 400 Ludington Street. The library is open from 10:00 a.m. to 7:00 p.m. through Thursday and from 10:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m. on Friday. Call the library at (906) 789-7323 for more information.