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One week! The next solar eclipse is happening in April, but will those of us in Cook County, MN be able to see it? Here's everything you need to know

Apr 01, 2024 07:09AM ● By Content Editor
Photo: Jason Howell via Unsplash

By Laura Durenberger-Grunow - Boreal Community Media - March 12, 2024. Updated April 1, 2024

The last solar eclipse visible from the contiguous United States until 2044 will take place on Monday, April 8, 2024. A solar eclipse happens when the moon lines up between the Earth and the Sun, cutting out sunlight - a phenomenon known as totality. During totality, "The sky will become dark, as if it were dawn or dusk. Weather permitting, people along the path of totality will see the Sun’s corona, or outer atmosphere, which is usually obscured by the bright face of the Sun," according to NASA. 

Friday update: Cloud cover forecast for the solar eclipse

Those of us in Minnesota are unfortunately not in the path of totality for the April eclipse, but, weather permitting, will be able to see a partial eclipse. According to an image from The Associated Press, Cook County should be able to experience a 60% eclipse, which is still something worth experiencing. 

 Image: AP News

Of course, viewing a solar eclipse, whether you're in the path of totality or viewing it partially, should only be done using safe eye protection (according to NASA, dark sunglasses don't count). Even if you're viewing through a telescope, camera, or binoculars, a special solar lens needs to be used. 

The American Astronomer Society (AAS) warns consumers of false advertising or misleading safety measures on some eclipse glasses. To help provide reliable information, the organization has put out a guide with authorized sellers, as well as tips for how to spot products that aren't legit, or haven't been fully tested. 

There are other options for indirectly viewing the eclipse, such as making your own viewing device, such as a pinhole projector, a simple viewer, or a box viewer

 Image: NASA

For a full guide on how to safely view the solar eclipse, visit the NASA website here. 

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