The eclipse began just before noon in Missouri and Illinois and concluded in the bi-state area just before 3 p.m.
While waiting for the path of totality in Carbondale, Illinois, thousands had to endure the wrath of humidity; a heat index of 107 degrees in early afternoon with bright sunshine.
“Well, short of the heat, it was really spectacular because there’s nothing like watching the day dim into night and back up again. It was fascinating," said Alison Quackenbush of Valpraiso, Indiana.
Then as the moon started covering the sun, dark clouds started covering the moon, but then the clouds opened again, presenting the total solar eclipse for the last few seconds.
"It was worth every minute of it," said Jeff Quackenbush, Alison's husband. "We had a great time. We really enjoyed it and we know we wouldn’t have a chance to do it again."
Celestial satisfaction for those who traveled hundreds of miles to Carbondale to witness heavenly history.
However, this eclipse was not a once in a lifetime event for Carbondale. Southern Illinois will once again be in the path of totality of another solar eclipse in 2024.
SIUC officials certainly made a festival out of the 2017 eclipse with music, food, speeches, videos, and a carnival ride.