Cloud cover made Monday’s the eclipse tough to see at Juno Beach Pier, but dozens showed up (Photo/Bill DiPaolo)
Sharing eclipse safety glasses, grilling chicken and generally just having a blast at the waterfront, several hundred lunar watchers gathered at DuBois Park on Monday afternoon for the rare celestial event.
“It’s so great to see so many people in the same place getting along. We need more of this right now in this country,” said Joey Huempfner, a Realtor from Jupiter.
Meanwhile, dozens of sky watchers started gathering about a half-hour before the 2:56 p.m. Monday maximum coverage by the moon of the sun. Scattered clouds blocked the view of the sun at the 1,000-foot Juno Beach Pier, but many stayed to watch.
“I like the fact we’re dealing with scientific certainty. With all the craziness in the world, science gives us something we can depend on,” said Dan Thayer, a former biologist with the South Florida Water Management District who lives in Jupiter.
Many watchers, such as Gabi Israelsen visting from Utah, made their own box cameras to view the eclipse.
“It’s not hard. It took me about 15 minutes,” said the University of Utah English major, showing how she cut away the cardboard top a Cocoa Pebbles cereal box and replaced it with tin foil. Poke a hole in the tin foil and it’s done.
Joey Heumpfner looks at the eclipse Monday through his hand-made box camera. “The smaller the whole in the tin foil, the sharper the image,” the Jupiter resident said. (Photo/Bill DiPaolo)
The parking lot at DuBois Park in Jupiter was full and had to be closed about 1:45 p.m., police said.
Watching as the sun reached its maximum 80 percent coverage, many marveled how it suddenly appeared dusk was approaching.
“It got cooler. The breeze came up. I was amazed watching through my glasses how much of the sun disappeared. The whole thing was so much more exciting than I thought,” said Teresa Ross from Tequesta.
The parking lot was full at DuBois Park at about 1:45 p.m. (Photo/Bill DiPaolo)