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  • Writer's pictureAlex Martin

The first SSC Expedition: we're documenting an eclipse!

Updated: May 24, 2023

On August 21, 2017, the eclipse that crossed the United States became the most witnessed Total Solar Eclipse in history. I traveled to Salem, Oregon and stayed with my friend and her family. I'll never forget that trip: visiting towns and trails up and down the NW Oregon coast, checking off some bucket list items (Multnomah Falls was a dream!), and of course--the big day itself.

I remember waking up that morning and being in awe that the skies were perfectly clear. The Sun was shining (for now!) and we decided against driving to downtown Salem in favor of not needing to fight traffic when the sky was perfect where we were.

From 830 to 1130am, we stood in wonder of the eclipse, and felt the visceral changes happening all around us. The dimming light, the chill falling in the air, the blanket of silence, the crescent-shaped shadows filtering through tree leaves, the stars twinkling in the darkening sky, and of course, the black hole that formed at Totality--perhaps the closest to supernatural I've ever experienced.

The eclipse was, beyond a shadow of a doubt, otherworldly. It is an event--a feeling--unlike any other you have experienced before. It marks you. Changes you. Digs into your mind and leaves you itching for another...

11 months passed before I went on to create Sidewalk Science Center while living in Savannah, Georgia. It began more as a hobby, then I transformed it into an outreach program under my business, then-called Experience Daliona.

As I grew to realize the larger potential SSC held, I knew what I wanted to do during the October 14, 2023 eclipse: return to Oregon with SSC and witness it again.

Needless to say, I've waited the better part of a decade for this moment. Through iterations--first wanting to take SSC on a tour down the PNW coast, then maybe locally in Oregon, and finally settling upon a 5-day trip to south central Oregon to witness the eclipse at Crater Lake--we finally have a vision:

SSC is going to take 15-20 people, mostly educators, to Oregon, where we will collaborate, network, and create educational content to document the eclipse together.

We've arranged accommodations for October 12-16, and are gathering educators and others to join us. SSC educators and volunteers have exclusive access to reserve a spot before June 1st, then we're opening up reservations to invited educators and guests. After June 10th, we are opening the remaining spots to anyone who would like to join us, with a waitlist for any potential cancellations. So long as everything holds, the cost for educators should only be $100 plus flights to Oregon. The cost for non-educators is $256 plus flights, with the additional $156 covering the lodging cost for non-educators. All other expenses should be covered by SSC and our fundraiser beginning June 1st, running through September.

Key an eye out as we document our journey and introduce the educators who are joining the trip, all the way through to the Annular Eclipse and beyond.

We have a future to create.

To all our endeavors,

Alex Martin

Executive Director

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