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Across the country, preparations are in full swing for the upcoming total solar eclipse on April 8th. This rare celestial event will occur when the moon passes between the earth and the sun, blocking out the sun’s light. Mark Breen, director of the planetarium at Fairbanks Museum in St. Johnsbury, emphasizes its uniqueness as very few people ever have the chance to see it.

The upcoming eclipse is particularly unique as it will pass over many American cities, allowing more people than ever before to witness it. David Hockey, a professor of astronomy at Northern Iowa University highlights its significance and Vermont Public is airing a new half-hour TV special called “The Great American Eclipse” to provide more information about this rare event. The program features discussions on astronomical science behind solar eclipses, importance of collecting data during eclipses and tips for safely viewing them to avoid eye damage.

The TV special also includes visits to various locations such as a church in Burlington that organized a homestay program for eclipse visitors, school observatory in Morristown and demonstration on how to build a pinhole viewer at Winooski elementary school. Thomas Hockey, author of “America’s First Eclipse Chasers,” delves into history of eclipse observation. Eclipse 2024: Path to Totality will premiere on Vermont Public’s main TV channel on March 27th at 8 p.m., and be available on demand after that date.

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