Luverne fifth graders marvel at total solar eclipse

Published 12:14 pm Monday, April 15, 2024

By Pierce Royal and Haley Mitchell Godwin

Special to The Luverne Journal

On April 8, residents of Crenshaw County joined millions of people across North America, to witness a breathtaking spectacle as a total solar eclipse crossed the nation. 

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Excitement began to brew at the Luverne Public Library around 12:30 p.m. where Luverne Elementary students gathered to watch as the celestial ballet unfolded in the skies. The library served as a hub of activity, offering patrons protective eyewear to safely observe the eclipse. 

Attendees were treated to moon pies and juice, adding a festive touch to this cosmic event.

The eclipse, which commenced its journey over the South Pacific Ocean, made its way across Mexico, the U.S. and Canada and in Crenshaw County, reached its peak around 1:49 p.m.

Students were eager to witness the rare event, led by their science and history teacher, Courtney Blackmon Mosely. The students participated in a chalk drawing activity depicting the phases of the eclipse before donning their protective glasses to view the spectacle firsthand.

“The solar eclipse was like a big game of hide-and-seek between the sun and the moon,” Moseley said. “When the moon covered part of the sun, the fifth-grade students cheered and gasped with excitement, wearing special glasses to watch safely. They pointed at the sky, amazed by the shadows and shapes created during this rare event. It was a super cool moment that made them curious about space and science!”

With the last total solar eclipse occurring in 2017, this was a first-time experience for many in the fifth-grade class. 

Luverne Public Library Director Kathryn Tomlin  played a pivotal role in orchestrating the event.

“We made sure all the students viewed the eclipse only when wearing the special glasses,” Tomlin said. “Everyone was so excited. It’s such a rare event that won’t happen again for 20 years and I am glad the students were able to witness it.”