Enlightening the Eclipse: Countdown to 2017

WSIU explores aspects of the upcoming solar eclipse that will cast southern Illinois in shadow on August 21, 2017.

Mark the Eclipse With A Commemorative Stamp

13 hours ago
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U.S. Postal Service

There are many different keepsakes available to commemorate the total solar eclipse throughout the southern Illinois region and the nation as a whole. 
 
Mark Saunders with the U.S. Postal Service says they have special stamps and post marks for the eclipse.

Makanda Boardwalk Preparing for the Eclipse

18 hours ago
Makanda Boardwalk
Benjy Jeffords / WSIU

The tiny town of Makanda is the place to be to see the longest totality for the solar eclipse next week.

When you talk about Makanda the first thing that people think of, besides the eclipse, is the boardwalk.

WSIU's Jennifer Fuller talks with singer/songwriter Mike Baltz about his new song, "The Eclipse," which he partnered with Carbondale's Shadi Frick to write.

Several hundred people are expected to show up at Cahokia Mounds in Collinsville on Aug. 21 to observe the solar eclipse from the “City of the Sun,” even though the historic site is just outside the path of totality.

The state historic site will experience about 99.5 percent totality and is not planning special events that day, said assistant manager Bill Iseminger.

He expects that most of the eclipse-watchers will want to climb the 156 steps to watch from the top of Monks Mound, the largest of the mounds built by the ancient Mississippians between 1000 and 1400 A.D.

Anyone who gets to see the total solar eclipse on August 21 will be lucky — and humanity is lucky to live on a planet that even has this kind of celestial event.

Mercury and Venus, after all, don't even have moons. Mars has a couple, but they're too small to completely blot out the sun. Gas giants like Jupiter do have big moons, but they don't have solid surfaces where you could stand and enjoy an eclipse.

And, even with solid land and a moon, Earth only gets its gorgeous total solar eclipses because of a cosmic coincidence.

One local group is asking for volunteers to pick up litter in Carbondale, in advance of the expected thousands of eclipse visitors. 

Two weeks ahead of the 2017 Solar Eclipse, WSIU's Jennifer Fuller talks with Amy Fox, the Public Relations Officer for the City of Carbondale. The city, along with SIU and other regional entities, are preparing for tens of thousands of visitors for the August 21st event.

Makanda, IL
Benjy Jeffords / WSIU

The total solar eclipse is just around the corner.

The village of Makanda is fortunate to have the longest duration of the total eclipse.

The village of Makanda has around 6oo residents.

They’re also expecting some visitors in a few weeks during the total solar eclipse.

The Public Must Prepare for the Eclipse

Aug 1, 2017

Locals know the total solar eclipse is later this month on the 21st.

Businesses and first responders have been preparing for months. But Rick Linton, Executive Director of Rend Lake Area Tourism says the people in the area need to prepare too.

A Visit To The 2nd Highest Spot In Southern Illinois

Aug 1, 2017

On this edition of Enlightening The Eclipse: Countdown To 2017 we visit to the highest point in southern Illinois and talk to Teresa Gilbert, the Director of Bald Knob Cross Of Peace in Alto Pas about what it is like to plan a Solar Eclipse Viewing Event at a site reached only by two-line, winding country roads.

In less than four weeks thousands, maybe tens of thousands of visitors from all over the earth will be in southern Illinois for the eclipse.  The exact number of visitors is almost impossible to come up with, and many officials say that is challenging when it comes to planning.

WSIU's Jennifer Fuller talks with Northwestern University Professor and Astronomer Shane Larson, ahead of his Science Cafe at the Science Center of Southern Illinois.

Carbondale Readies For Eclipse Visitors

Jul 24, 2017

In an effort to help eclipse visitors deal with August heat,   the City of Carbondale has designated the Carbondale Civic Center as a cooling site.  The city will also have first aid stations in and around the downtown area.

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Facebook

The small town of Perryville, Missouri is in the totality path of the Total Solar Eclipse next month.

WSIU's Brad Palmer talks with the woman leading the planning activities about what promises to be a busy weekend starting on August 18.

Makanda Artist Draws The Line.

Jul 21, 2017
Courtesy of Facebook page of Rainmaker Art Studio, Makanda.

On this edition of Enlightening The Eclipse: Countdown To 2017, WSIU visits with Dave Dardis, the Owner of Rainmaker Art Studio in Makanda.

A little more than a month from now, Carbondale will play host to tens of thousands of visitors during a total solar eclipse. WSIU's Jennifer Fuller talks with Mayor Mike Henry and City Manager Gary Williams about their last-minute preparations.

  The stars have aligned for a national organization of Corvette enthusiasts holding its national convention in Bowling Green, Kentucky beginning Aug. 21.

Amtrak Says Its Trains Can Get You to the Eclipse

Jun 28, 2017

If you're planning a trip to Carbondale for the total solar eclipse on August 21st, you might consider riding the train.

Amtrak still has open seats at a discount rate for the eclipse weekend. Whether you're coming from the north or south, Amtrak's Media Relations Officer Marc Magliari says Amtrak is the way to go.

L-S-U Test Launches Eclipse Balloon At Saluki Stadium

Jun 22, 2017
WSIU/Kevin Boucher

A team of students and researchers led by Dr. Gregory Guzik, director of the Louisiana Space Grant Consortium at Louisiana State University's Department of Physics and Astronomy made a test flight of a weather balloon recently at Saluki Stadium.  WSIU radio was there with this report.

Eclipse
eclipse.siu.edu

WSIU's Jennifer Fuller talks with Greg Guzik, Director of the Louisiana Space Grant Consortium, Delgado Community College Associate Physics Professor Joanna Rivers, and SIU Eclipse Committee Coordinator Bob Baer about the test launch of a special balloon that will track the 2017 Solar Eclipse in Carbondale.

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Brad Palmer, WSIU Radio

Two dozen school teachers from southeast Missouri involved in an eclipse educational project took part in a two-day conference on the Southeast Missouri State University campus.

The conference ended Wednesday with a test launch of two tethered high-altitude, helium-filled weather balloons, similar to the ones that will be released on eclipse day, August 21st.

Debbie Below with the Southeast Missouri State University Eclipse Committee talks about the plans being made for the big event on the Cape Girardeau campus and the city as a whole.

On this edition of Enlightening The Eclipse: Countdown to 2017, WSIU visits with  Jane Herman, Doctor of Optometry at Sears Optical in Marion.

David Baron's Website

With the building  awareness of the upcoming total solar eclipse, award-winning journalist, author and former NPR correspondent David Baron feels it is important to learn about a total solar eclipse which caused similar excitement in 1878 in the American West.  In his new book titled "American Eclipse: A Nation's Epic Race To Catch The Shadow Of The Moon and Win The Glory Of The Moon", Baron tells a fascinating story of a diverse group who witnessed the total solar eclipse from the Rocky Mountains.  Among the group involved in this viewing, famed Inventor Thomas Edison.

On this edition of Enlightening The Eclipse: Countdown To 2017 WSIU visits with health care professionals, first responders, emergency managers and tourism officials to see what is involved in planning for 100s of thousands of visitors. 

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pixabay.com

WSIU's Jennifer Fuller talks with SIU's Bob Baer, NASA Astronomer Lou Mayo, and NASA Edge Producer Blair Allen about preparations for the 2017 Solar Eclipse.

WSIU's Jennifer Fuller talks with SIUC Eclipse Committee Co-Chair Bob Baer, Planetary Radio Host Mat Kaplan, and Adler Planetarium Master Educator Michelle Nichols about their preparation visit ahead of the August 21 solar eclipse.

The Art of the Eclipse With Dr. David Levy

Mar 21, 2017

On this edition of Enlightening The Eclipse: Countdown to 2017, we visit with world-renown Astronomer Dr. David Levy.

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pixabay.com

Thousands of people are expected to visit southern Illinois this summer, hoping to get a glimpse of what many say is a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity: A total solar eclipse.

As WSIU Student Reporter David Larson reports, lots of local people are excited about the opportunity, too.

 

On this segment of "Enlightening The Eclipse: Countdown to 2017" we explore the way that ancient Central and South American cultures interpreted the total solar eclipses.  Our expert is Dr. Roberto Barrios, Associate Professor and Director of Graduate Studies, in the Department of Anthropology at Southern Illinois University in Carbondale.

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