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Oh wow! This August 21, the Moon’s shadow, a mere 60 to 70 miles wide, will flee across the United States in a reverse-Oregon-trail and continue through Charleston, South Carolina. If you are in the path of totality for this solar eclipse, you’ll see the Moon blot out the Sun for a mere 2-3 minutes.

In preparation for such a salient astronomical event, I’ve decided to do a blog series to cover at least some of what I’d like to share. I plan to show some configuration diagrams (to-scale and not-to-scale, that’s not a question), a view of stars and planets visible near the eclipse, tales of past eclipses, the science behind them, and a detailed script of what I’ll be doing during my two long-awaited minutes of amazement.

To start, I recommend checking out this interactive Google Maps tool to find out the specifics for your location.

This snapshot of the interactive Google Maps page when zoomed out shows the path of totality cross the US. Observers within the green or yellow lines can witness a partial eclipse.