Lake Afton observatory holds solar eclipse viewing class

SEDGWICK COUNTY, Kan. (KSNW) – Many people have plans for viewing the solar eclipse on August 21, and the Lake Afton observatory staff wants those in the area to do so safely.

Lake Afton observatory held a Saturday afternoon class to teach eclipse watchers how to best view the event and how to save their eyesight in the process. For example, using sunglasses to view the eclipse can still burn the retina in your eye.

“If you have solar glasses, just make sure you know how to use them. Make sure they’re in good working order, that they’re not damaged, they’re not scratched, or cracked, if they are, throw them away. Don’t worry about it,” chairman of the board at Lake Afton Observatory, Fred Gassert said.

Gassert himself ordered several pairs of solar glasses off of Amazon recently, which were recalled because they weren’t safe enough to look into the sun with. Gassert was refunded.

Those who don’t care to look at the sun can still have fun with the eclipse by using homemade items to look at the projections, which will look like little crescents.

“You can do it with the fancy telescopes, with the nice equipment, but you don’t have to have any of that. You can do it like you said, with a colander or with a piece of paper with a hole in it,” Gassert said.

The observatory held a class last Saturday and this Saturday. They’ll hold one more next Saturday if there’s enough interest.

The next solar eclipse is to take place in 2024.

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