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Photos and Text by Kristina Pritchett

The morning may have started out cloudy, but the sky quickly cleared in time for 150 guests to watch the solar eclipse at the Ocean Institute.

On Monday, Aug. 21, the Ocean Institute opened their doors early to invite guests to watch as the moon passed between the earth and the sun.

That morning, a line stretched in front of the building with guests eagerly waiting to head inside and get their glasses that would allow them to safely watch the eclipse. Some, even getting there as early as 6 a.m.

Max, 9 of Capistrano Beach, said he was excited for the event.

He, along with other guests, had made their own type of viewing box made out of a cereal box.

Max’s mom, Susanne Dachgruber didn’t have far to travel for the event but said it was something that couldn’t be missed.

As it grew closer for the eclipse to begin, the dock filled with guests of all ages. Nathan Taxel, director of outdoor education for the Ocean Institute, continuously walked around with other viewing devices and answered questions.

By 10:22, many of the younger guests weren’t so excited, but the adults were still enjoying the moment.

“It puts a lot of things into perspective when you see nature do something seemingly impossible,” Dachgruber said.

Max, smiled as he watched through the glasses.

“It was really cool,” he said. “It looked like something round with a giant bite out of it.”

The next solar eclipse will come closer to Southern California in 2045 when totality will be visible in Northern California.

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