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World's Largest Solar Eclipse Party Draws Thousands to Stadium

•, by Stephanie Pappas

The partial eclipse in Colorado occurred during a rare annular solar eclipse, in which the moon passed in front of — but did not completely obscure — the sun. In parts of China, Japan and eight western states, the celestial show created a dazzling "ring of fire" effect, while wide swathes of the U.S., including Colorado, saw a partial solar eclipse.

But even a partial eclipse was enough to draw a crowd of thousands to Folsom Field to see the moon take a bite from the sun. The organizers had billed the event as the world's largest solar eclipse viewing party.

At times, clouds periodically obscured the eclipsed sun, eliciting boos from the crowd. But when the clouds parted at 7:13 p.m. MDT (9:13 p.m. EDT/0113 GMT) several minutes before the maximum eclipse, it left some in the stadium speechless. 
Astronomer Douglas Duncan, the director of the Fiske Planetarium at the University of Colorado, Boulder, arranged the eclipse-viewing event, mobilizing thousands of specialized solar-viewing glasses for the occasion. About 50,000 pairs of solar eclipse glasses were sold or given to schoolchildren in the days before the event, Duncan told

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