[Clockwise from left: Ending diamond ring (photo courtesy of Justin Motta); CCSU astronomy professor (and AAVSO President) Kristine Larsen, alumna Jessica Johnson, and AAVSO Director Stella Kafka prepare to leave hotel in Columbia, MO at 4 AM for the eclipse; pinhole images of a slender crescent sun seen through tree leaves near Marion, IL]
Wherever you viewed the Great American Eclipse from, we hope it was as amazing an experience as it was for CCSU professor Kristine Larsen and alumna Jessica Johnson. After years of preparation, including numerous public talks and giving away 1000 pairs of solar eclipse glasses, Larsen traveled to Columbia, MO with former research student Jessica Johnson to witness Larsen’s fifth and Johnson’s first total solar eclipse. When the weather reports turned iffy, three buses of eclipse aficionados made the decision to leave Columbia at 4:30 AM on eclipse day and travel nearly five hours to Marion, IL in search of the perfect skies. More details on this life changing experience will follow, but as you can see from the above pictures, it was well worth the early morning trek.