‘Close call’ between storm clouds, clear skies for 2017’s final Manhattanhenge
By Ashley Williams, AccuWeather staff writer
July 12, 2017, 7:21:52 AM EDT
In hopes of being bathed in a dazzling sunset glow that trumps any social media filter, selfie snappers may fare better this time around for 2017’s final Manhattanhenge.
New Yorkers are once again expected to flood the streets of Manhattan on July 12 and 13 for a glimpse of the breathtaking sunset, which occurs four times annually.
Clouds thwarted May’s highly anticipated astronomical display in New York City, during which the sun perfectly aligns with Manhattan’s street grid at sunset.
According to the American Museum of Natural History, buildings along the borough’s east- and westward roads light up with the glow of the sun.
For the main event on July 12, it’s possible that spectators will be treated to a stunning and clear sunset view if the sky remains clear.
“The main issue is whether there is a shower or thunderstorm in progress at the exact time when it would occur,” said AccuWeather Chief Meteorologist Elliot Abrams. “If there is no shower, there could be a spectacular view with a red sunset sky.”
However, there currently isn’t such a storm to track, he said.
“It will be a close call between good weather and clouds ruining the show,” Abrams said.
“We know the range of possible weather: dark and showery or sunshine on what will be a warm evening,” he said.
Temperatures will hover around 80 degrees Fahrenheit when the full sun is visible on the grid.
Onlookers can view the main event on July 12 at 8:20 p.m. EDT.
Half of the sun will be seen on the grid on July 13 at 8:21 p.m. EDT.
The final Manhattanhenge of the year comes just weeks after the famous Stonehenge event in England, during which the sun perfectly aligns with the prehistoric stones during the summer solstice.
Coined by astrophysicist Neil deGrasse Tyson, Manhattanhenge takes its name from Stonehenge, much like similar events which occur in cities including Toronto, Montreal and Chicago throughout the year.
According to deGrasse Tyson’s blog, spectators can get the best Manhattanhenge views at cross streets including 14th, 23rd, 34th, 42nd and 57th streets.
Observers may also want to consider standing at the easternmost position in Manhattan, making sure that New Jersey can still be seen to the west, the blog stated.
The sun will reenter the spotlight on Aug. 21, when the total solar eclipse will be visible across the United States for the first time since 1979.
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