Baltimore’s “Street Corner Astronomer” Encourages You to Stare at the Sun (Through a Special Telescope)

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2004's transit

You want to talk about a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity? How about a transit of Venus — when the blue planet takes about six hours to cross in front of the Sun? It’s happening on June 5 at 6:04 p.m. And it’s not going to happen again until 2117. (Technically, it’s more of a twice-in-a-lifetime opportunity, as TOVs occur in pairs eight years apart — so, yeah, there was one in 2004, but whatever, you missed that and now this is your only chance!)

Herman Heyn, Baltimore’s “street corner astronomer” occasionally seen in Fells Point or Charles Village offering passersby telescopic glimpses of various celestial sights, will be at the east end of Lake Montebello in northeast Baltimore with a special Sun telescope so anyone who wants to can view the astronomical rarity without causing damage to their eyes.

Heyn encourages spectators to show up early because, according to Heyn’s website, “the most exciting part of a TOV is when Venus first appears on the edge of the Sun.”



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