Eclipse Tips

The eclipse is coming! A total solar eclipse will take place on Monday, August 21, the first to appear over the mainland United States in nearly 40 years. But what does it all mean?

First of all, what is an eclipse? Here’s how NASA explains the phenomenon:

An eclipse takes place when one heavenly body such as a moon or planet moves into the shadow of another heavenly body. There are two types of eclipses on Earth: an eclipse of the moon and an eclipse of the sun. A Lunar (moon) Eclipse occurs when Earth moves between the sun and the moon, blocking the sunlight that normally is reflected by the moon. (This sunlight is what causes the moon to shine.) Instead of light hitting the moon’s surface, Earth’s shadow falls on it. It lasts a few hours, and it is safe to look at a Lunar Eclipse.

A Solar (sun) Eclipse occurs when the orbiting moon moves in between the sun and Earth. When this happens, the moon blocks the light of the sun from reaching Earth. This causes an eclipse of the sun, or solar eclipse. During a solar eclipse, the moon casts a shadow onto Earth, temporarily blocking out the sun.  It lasts only a few minutes and it is definitely NOT safe to look directly at a most phases of a Solar Eclipse.

The solar eclipse should only be viewed directly using ISO-approved “eclipse glasses” or welding goggles with a shade number of 12 to 14. Use the filtered shades during the hour-long partial phase before totality and then again afterward for an hour. Only if you are in a location where you will experience total coverage of the sun (here in CT we are not in the path of totality) are you able to  watch the event for the duration of totality (only about  2 minutes!) with naked eyes or through binoculars.

Here’s the path of totality for Monday’s Solar Eclipse:

Connecticut is in the 68% region, which means eye protection must be used when viewing for the entire duration of the eclipse.

If you aren’t able to get properly filtered lenses to view the eclipse directly, it is relatively easy to view the eclipse indirectly by making a pinhole viewer out of card stock / posterboard, or out of a cardboard box.

But you don’t even need to even build something. Any object with tiny holes that will let light through works. A kitchen strainer, for example — or just closing your fist to barely let a point of light through — can make for a proper pinhole camera. The important thing to remember is to stand with your back to the Sun, positioning your pinhole device so that the sun projects an image onto a white or light surface in front of you.



NEVER look through the pinhole at the sun!

Cheshire Library will have an Exploring the Eclipse program at Bartlem Park on  Monday Aug 21, 2017 at 1:00 PM.. We’ll have science demonstrations and activities for kids, a telescope, and special glasses for viewing the eclipse when it begins here in Cheshire. Glasses will be distributed to children and families attending the program on a first-come, first-served basis, 1 pair to be shared per family.

Here in CT, we will only be able to see a partial eclipse with 68% coverage of the sun, but you can view the total eclipse by following the livestream from NASA.

For more information:



What’s Happening at Cheshire Library in August

Play, learn, and create with these programs at Cheshire Library in August!

Color Yourself Calm

Thursday Aug 3, 2017, 6:00 – 8:00 PM

De-stress your busy life with a relaxing night of coloring. We’ll provide coloring pages and supplies, but feel free to bring your own pages, art supplies. This adult only program meets the first Thursday of every month, drop on by!

Builders Brigade LEGO Club

Tuesday Aug 15, 2017, 4:00 – 5:00 PM

Do you love building with LEGO® blocks or Mega Bloks? The Builders Brigade is the program for you! All Ages, No registration required.

The Bear Reality

 Wednesday Aug 16, 2017, 6:30  –  8:00 PM

The black bear population in Connecticut has continued to increase since 1980. It’s important for residents and outdoor enthusiasts to learn real facts about black bears enabling them to stay safe, protect themselves and their property and make possible coexistense with bears.  Join presenter Felicia Ortner, a Connecticut Master Wildlife Conservationist (MWC) for a program  that will provide education and facts about bears and help dispel myths and common misunderstandings. Registration is required.

Pottery Night

Thursdays,  Aug 17 & 24, 2017, 6:00 – 8:00 PM

Join us for two nights of fun with pottery.  You will learn the origin of clay, how it’s been used through the ages and how it’s used today.  Participants will have the opportunity to make handprint bowls and lace bowls.  Your pottery will be fired at Cheshire’s own Ready Glaze Fire. Space is limited, registration required for this adult only program. By signing up you agree to attend both 8/17/17 & 8/24/17.

Trading Card Club: Yu-Gi-Oh & Pokemon

Friday Aug 18, 2017, 3:00 – 4:30 PM

Yu-Gi-Oh! and Pokemon trading card game tournaments here at CPL!   Just bring your cards, and join in the fun!  No registration required, Grades 7-12

Afternoons of Awesome: Exploring the Eclipse

Monday Aug 21, 2017,  1:00 – 2:00 PM

Kids entering grades 3-6 are invited to Afternoons of Awesome (or A-squared for short) for fun with art, science, technology, and games. Today we’re learning about the solar eclipse taking place across the U.S. today, and we’ll head outside to view its beginning here in Cheshire! Registration required. Registration begins August 1 for Cheshire residents and August 15 for nonresidents.

Free glasses for viewing the eclipse will be given out at Cheshire Library beginning August 16 –  1 per person, first come first served.

University Admissions and the Application Process

Tuesday Aug 22, 2017, 6:30  –  7:30 PM
Join Jas Jernaill, the Managing Director of Bulldog Tutors, for a general discussion on the university admissions and college application process. Topics will include the primary components of a successful application, standardized testing options, how the admissions timeline differs for aspiring collegiate athletes, and building the common app. Registration is required.

Baby Play Group (pre-walkers)

Wednesday Aug 23, 2017, 10:00 – 11:00 AM

Baby Play Group is a special time for babies and caregivers to interact with books, songs, rhymes, American Sign Language, PLAY. This program is for pre-walking babies and their caregivers. In order to give our youngest patrons a safe space of their own, we request no siblings, pleaseRegistration required starting August 1st for Cheshire residents and August 16th for all others.

Five Common Diseases of Apple in New England

Wednesday Aug 30, 2017, 6:00 – 8:00 PM

Apples are important specialty crops in New England. Join Dr. Quan Zeng as he explains the most common diseases of apple in New England orchards and backyard gardens, from the aspects of disease symptoms, diagnostics, and management. Registration is required.