Nearly 2,000 gather at ODU planetarium to see the solar eclipse

NORFOLK, Va. (WAVY) — Nearly 2,000 people crowded Kaufman Mall at Old Dominion University on Monday to witness the partial solar eclipse.

With only 1,000 glasses to hand out, strangers quickly started sharing so everyone could get a chance to stare up at the sun.

Hundreds of families braved the heat to see the eclipse — from the young to the young at heart.

“I am old and I’ll never see another one, so it’s real important to me,” Diane Sullivan said.

Sullivan waited an hour and a half for a pair of glasses to see the eclipse, but they ran out before she got some.

“We gave out 1,000 eclipse glasses in 25 minutes,” said ODU Planetarium Director Justin Mason. “We were just not expecting this type of crowd, just this size.”

Some waited more than an hour to get a 10-second, up close view of the eclipse through one of three ODU telescopes. But many said it was worth it.

“I think it’s just a wonderful thing, I’ve never seen anything like this before. So it’s just different for me,” said a woman named Elaine who came to ODU with her husband and daughter.