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Eclipse also has relevance for astrologers

Monday’s total eclipse is a significant event for astronomers, but it also has relevance for astrologers. 

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On her website, astrologer Marjorie Orr said that several major history-altering events -- including the explosion of the first atomic bomb and the assassination of President John F. Kennedy -- have occurred within a few months of solar eclipses. 

She called Monday’s eclipse a “Saros Series 1 North” and claims that it “puts pressure on personal relationships.” She advises against hasty decisions, since information will be “distorted and possibly false.”

This particular type of eclipse also occurred in 1909, 1927, 1945, 1963, 1981 and 1999, Orr said.

The 1927 eclipse preceded Charles Lindbergh’s solo, nonstop transatlantic flight, Orr said. She also claimed that the atom bomb dropped on Hiroshima took place four weeks after the 1945 eclipse.

Martin Luther King Jr.’s “I have a dream” speech was delivered four weeks after the 1963 eclipse, and Kennedy was killed in Dallas three months later, Orr said.

In his 2001 book, “Eclipse: The Celestial Phenomenon that Changed the Course of History,” space scientist Duncan Steel wrote that solar eclipses “have been interpreted as evil omens by many civilizations because the life-giving sunlight is obscured for a few minutes.”

Steel wrote that accounts of the death of Jesus Christ depicted a so-called “crucifixion eclipse,” and that the ancient Chinese would beat drums and shoot arrows into the sky to ward off what they believed was a dragon devouring the sun, Newsweek reported.

Whether one believes in astrology or not, its connection to eclipses still makes for interesting reading.

Thieves use forklift to steal ATM, police say

Police are asking for the public’s help to identify the thieves who stole an ATM by ramming it with a forklift and loading it into a waiting truck.

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The thieves used a large CAT forklift to crash into the drive-thru portion of a bank last Wednesday. Police believe the criminals might have some ties to the construction industry.

They targeted the First Service Bank in Conway in the dead of night, committing the robbery around 3:30 a.m.

The video was captured by the bank’s CCTV cameras and the Conway Police Department posted the video on Facebook.

The video does not give a clear image of the thieves, so police are asking for help identifying the forklift.

Police also shared a picture of truck they believed was involved.

According to Gizmodo, the biggest problem for thieves thinking about heisting an ATM might not be breaking into it once it’s in their possession. Many ATMs are now equipped with GPS tracking. Apparently, however, that’s not the case with this particular machine.

Eastern Tennessee town prepares for ‘sweetest view’ of eclipse

The east Tennessee town of Sweetwater is normally quiet, with the Lost Sea Adventure caverns its main tourist attraction. On Monday, the town will be bustling with thousands of people ready to view the total eclipse that will be passing through the area.

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City recorder Jessica Morgan said nearly 50,000 to 60,000 people are expected in town to see the two minutes, 39 seconds of totality, the Knoxville News-Sentinel reported.

“We’re telling residents to stock up on food and medication and don’t drive anywhere Sunday or Monday. It is wild,” Morgan said.

The town has set up a website touting “the sweetest view in America” and is planning a massive party for the eclipse.

Chip Gruver is a Sweetwater native who lives in Minnesota. He has known about the eclipse  since 2010. 

“I said, ‘Oh my goodness, that goes right through Sweetwater!’” he told the Madisonville Advocate & Democrat.

Gruver promptly asked his boss to reserve Aug. 21, 2017, as a vacation day, the Advocate & Democrat reported.

The town is holding a street festival from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m., the News-Sentinel reported. The total eclipse will occur just after 2:30 p.m.

Morgan told the Advocate & Democrat that Sweetwater has generated at least $44,000 in revenue from parking places and eclipse items such as T-shirts.

Group from Latvia travels to Idaho for eclipse

A group from Latvia will be among the thousands who will view Monday’s total eclipse, the Idaho Statesman reported.

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Agnese Zalcmane organized a trip for 22 Latvians, who traveled more than 5,000 miles to Weiser, Idaho, this weekend.

Zalcmane has seen seven total eclipses in places including Kazakhstan, Australia, Kenya and Indonesia, the Statesman reported. When she learned of Monday’s total solar eclipse, she knew she wanted to find a spot where the moon would fully block the sun.

Zalcmane and her group left home July 31 and has visited San Francisco, Los Angeles and Las Vegas. Originally the travelers wanted to view the eclipse from Oregon, but fearing traffic congestion, decided to stop in Weiser.”I know it’s worth it,” Zalcmane told the Statesman. “Ninety-nine percent and 100 percent are totally different things. It’s worth it to go to the path of totality.”

Heavy rain causes car to descend sand bank

Beaches can be beautiful, but they can also be unpredictable – especially when there’s 5 inches of rain.

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Ciaran Lucey found that out the hard way when his car was nearly swallowed while being parked outside the Beachcomber Friday night.

“I ran out here with my cousin and slowly watched my car decline into the dune and onto the beach for like two hours,” he said. “I was just like staring at it laughing in the rain because at that point what else can you do?”

No one was hurt and the car was towed out Saturday morning.

National parks prime spots for eclipse viewing

Thousands of people have been preparing for years to watch Monday’s total eclipse. Others are going to try and wing it. If you are more of a spur-of-the-moment person, then here are some places to view the eclipse -- assuming there is room. The eclipse will cross over 21 national parks and seven trails. according to the National Park Service.

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Here are some notable places to watch the eclipse:

John Day Fossil Beds National Monument, Oregon

Eastern Oregon is a prime viewing spot for the eclipse, which will begin shortly after 9 a.m. at the park. It will be visible from all three units of the park, with the Painted Hills and Sheep Rock units directly under the center line of the eclipse. The Clamo Unit is north of the center line, but still within the range of totality, officials said.

The Oregon Department of Transportation will not be closing roads. However, motorists might see transportation workers, police and members of the Oregon National Guard directing traffic, and some turns might be blocked, OregonLive reported.

Ketchum and Sun Valley, Idaho

Ketchum and Sun Valley are hosting a joint solar eclipse viewing party. Totality is expected to last 1 minute, 34 seconds, beginning at 11:29 a.m.

Grand Teton National Park, Wyoming

There will be five viewing areas at Grand Teton. Astronomers and park rangers will host the events. Park campgrounds are nearly full with visitors planning to camp through eclipse day on Monday, the National Park Service reported. Camping in the park is only allowed at designated campgrounds. 

Monday, roadside parking is prohibited along U.S. Highway 89, Teton Park Road, and Moose-Wilson Road. Parking is prohibited in roadside pullouts, turnouts, and parking areas before 6 a.m.

Homestead National Monument, Nebraska

Bill Nye the Science Guy will be in attendance, along with Hannah Huston, who was a finalist on “The Voice,” the Beatrice Daily Sun reported. A full day of events is planned for Monday. NASA scientists Dr. Amy Mainzer, Dr. Kelsey Young, Dr. Edwin Grayzeck also will be at Homestead.

Tallulah Gorge State Park, Georgia

Located two hours north of Atlanta, Tallulah Gorge State Park is hosting a two-hour eclipse party beginning at 1 p.m. The park opens at 8 a.m., and totality is expected to pass through the park at 2:35 p.m.

A word of caution: Be sure to bring water, snacks, sunscreen and solar eclipse viewing glasses before leaving home. The chances of finding them on site are going to be difficult.

Florida firefighter spears 409-pound grouper

A Bradenton firefighter has just caught one of the world’s largest Warsaw groupers, according to news reports.

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James Taylor speared a 409-pound grouper during the St. Pete Open annual fishing tournament on Saturday, according to WFTS.

Taylor was spearfishing in about 250-feet-deep waters when he caught the fish.

Florida Fish and Wildlife weighed the grouper and Taylor is waiting to hear whether it will take the record as the largest grouper speared, according to WFTS.

According to the Florida Fish and Wildlife Commission, the state record for a hook and line catch is 436 pounds.

Real estate agent finds human remains while showing Florida property, police say

A real estate agent and some clients found human remains on a rural Groveland property Saturday, the Lake County Sheriff’s Office said.

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Deputies began investigating the remains around 5:50 p.m. after the real estate agent discovered them on the property, which is up for sale.

Deputies preserved the scene overnight and continued investigating the remains Sunday.

The investigation is active.

Deputies have not determined the cause of death or identity of the person at this time. 

Here’s where you can get freebies and deals to celebrate the solar eclipse

The solar eclipse is just hours away, and a gang of companies are celebrating the big celestial event with freebies and deals. 

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From sweet treats to kitchen appliances, take a look at these offerings to score all of the best discounts. 

Applebee’s

The chain is honoring the occasion with its Perfect Eclipse Margarita. The special is only good on Aug. 21 at participating locations.

Dairy Queen

From Aug. 21 - Sept. 3, you can buy one blizzard at its normal price and get the second blizzard for just 99 cents.

Denny’s

In the mood for breakfast? Denny’s has got your back. On Aug. 21, you can have all-you-can-eat “mooncakes” or moon-shaped buttermilk pancakes for $4.

Frigidaire

The appliance company is having its “first-ever blackout sale.” It began on Aug. 17 and will last until Aug. 23. It’s featuring products from its Smudge-Proof Black Stainless Steel collection, which includes microwaves and dishwashers. 

Krispy Kreme 

Krispy Kreme’s famous original glazed doughnuts will be eclipsed to celebrate the show in the sky. The doughnut company will be coating its original glazed donuts with a covering of chocolate on Aug. 21.

Nike

Dress the part for the big day with Nike. The clothing and shoe line is encouraging customers to take their looks “from day to night to day again in all black” with its merchandise. 

Editor’s Note: An earlier version of this story said Dairy Queen was offering two Blizzards for the price of one for the price of 99 cents.

Illinois town taking center stage for eclipse

A small town in Illinois will be the focal point Monday when a total solar eclipse crosses North America for the first time in 99 years.

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In Makanda, located in the southern part of the state, the eclipse will be visible for more than two minutes, CBS News reported. Residents are approaching the event with a party atmosphere.

"I do feel lucky. How can you not feel lucky? This is a lucky event," Dave Dardis told CBS News.

The eclipse's path runs through Dardis’ art studio and shop in Makanda, and friends are jockeying for a spot to view the rare event. Dardis has drawn a line through his shop.

“They are wondering, ‘is there room in your backyard?’ If they're good friends I tell them bring your sleeping bag, there's room,” Dardis told CBS News. The eclipse will start in Oregon and take less than two hours to reach South Carolina, racing across the country at an average speed of 1,500 mph. It will cover a swath roughly 70 miles wide, and as day turns to night, temperatures could drop as much as 25 degrees.Tens of thousands of people are expected to pour into Makanda. Joe McFarland calls himself the town's unofficial eclipse coordinator.

"What it means is we're nervous, that we're going to have crowd control issues, traffic control issues. We're trying to prepare for that," McFarland told CBS News.Tourists hoping to find a spot in Makanda are probably too late. Town organizers told CBS News that motels have been booked solid, and one room is fetching as much as $3,800.

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