OMSI was recently voted the best science museum in the country by Newsweek, which is a good reason hundreds of people gathered there to watch the partial solar eclipse on Monday for a viewing celebration.

Guests witnessed the celestial event firsthand from 10:30 am to 12:30 pm, as OMSI offered a range of activities and viewing options for attendees.

It was a cloudy day and Oregon wasn’t in the path of totality, but every once in a while the eclipse peeked out from the clouds.

The partial solar eclipse in Portland lasted for 1 hour and 46 minutes, starting at 10:33 am and ending at 12:19 pm. The maximum eclipse occurred at 11:25 am, with the Moon covering 23 percent of the Sun’s diameter at 45 degrees above the southeastern horizon. This eclipse featured a totality duration of 4 minutes and 27 seconds, nearly twice as long as the 2017 solar eclipse.

KXL’s James Shippy spoke with numerous viewers young and old, ranging from the Pacific Northwest to visitors as far east as Vermont (in town for the grandkids).

Safety was a key concern throughout the celebration, with organizers stressing the importance of wearing approved eye protection. Even during the partial phase, the sun’s brightness could cause eye damage. Special solar viewing glasses were made available both before and during the event at the OMSI Science Store.

The next time the United States will see a total solar eclipse will be in 2044.

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