Hundreds Gather in Downtown Rochester for a little eclipse watching

Aug 21, 2017

Credit Randy Gorbman / WXXI News

There were people sky watching all over the Rochester area Monday to try and get a glimpse of the partial solar eclipse.

That included hundreds who gathered outside the Rundel Library downtown. The Central Library had already given away a few thousand eclipse viewing glasses, and the 400 or so they had left went quickly on Monday.

Staffers also provided pinhole viewers for people who couldn’t snag or borrow a pair of glasses.

Samantha Gillenson was one of the many downtown workers who took a little break midday to watch the eclipse.

“I think it’s amazing, I think that these are literally one in a lifetime opportunities.”

A lot of the people who showed up outside Rundel may not have known each other before the eclipse, but they quickly became friends, it was really like just a big social gathering, at least for Sandy Tool who said it was great to connect with a lot of eclipse enthusiasts.

“It’s everything, it’s better than I expected it to be. It’s really good…I hope I’m around to see the one in 2024, that’s what I have to look forward to now.”

Stacey Boose brought her 6 year old son to the event.

Credit Randy Gorbman / WXXI News

“I think it’s a great part of world history and I think it’s something everyone should see because it’s very educational, especially, I brought my son out here, so it’s very educational and it’s amazing to see, something going on in the world that we usually don’t see every day,” Boose told WXXI News.

And as you might guess the people who run the Central Library were also happy about the turnout which included a lot of kids still off from school.

Sally Snow, is the assistant director for the central library.

“The timing couldn’t be better, it’s summer when the kids are out of school, so it’s good, it gets the kids into science, it gives them an opportunity to observe what’s going on up in the heavens, kind of an astronomy lesson.”

Snow is hoping the experience will get more people aware of the library's services and encourage them to visit more often.

Clifford Provost and Sandy Tool were a couple of the eclipse watchers who showed up outside Rundel: