NEW YORK CITY — New Yorkers took a break from their harried lives to watch the solar eclipse unfold amid the hustle and bustle of a Monday afternoon.
People gathered in public spaces across the five boroughs to watch the historic celestial event, which peaked at about 2:44 p.m. as it traveled across North America.
Things started to look a little biblical in Brooklyn's Grand Army Plaza, as gazers appeared awed by the heavens.
IT HAS BEGUN.— Rachel H. Smith (@rachelholliday) August 21, 2017
friends Eduardo, Julianna and Lucas have been waiting at Grand Army Plaza since noon with eclipse glasses bought on Amazon. 😎 pic.twitter.com/GErJ5DexSm
Rowena Maloco, 43, stood in Flushing Meadows-Corona Park using radiology screens she got from when her mother had X-rays done during a physical exam before coming to the United States from the Philippines.
"You can see through the black parts," she said.
Her friend, Dionne Massiah, 38, helped pass the screens around to park-goers who wanted to catch the eclipse just as it began.
"These radiology films are excellent because you can't see anything through them. That was the best idea," she said.
One young man used some heavier-duty gear to watch.
Improvisation was key to those viewing without protective glasses.
Paul Glover checks out the eclipse through a last minute pin hole eclipse viewer. pic.twitter.com/XV2Hej9P1g— Gwynne Hogan (@GwynneFitz) August 21, 2017
In Midtown, office workers and passersby took a break to watch as the eclipse neared its totality.
Eclipse watchers in Midtown. pic.twitter.com/FjmMzwEEQh— Ben Fractenberg (@fractenberg) August 21, 2017
Some families opted for the wide-open spaces of Central Park to catch the event.
Maria Victoria made a viewer out of a cereal box with aluminum foil before taking her two children to the park.
"They've never seen an eclipse," she said, adding that they picked out their spot in the park around 2 p.m.
"Now the sun looks like a banana," exclaimed her son, Tommaso, 4, before the eclipse reached its peak in the city.