Star gazers and sky watchers have a number of options for seeing the August 21st total solar eclipse, from the least expensive in their backyards to paying $35,000 for a ticket on an airplane that will fly above the clouds serving champagne and guaranteeing passengers non-obstructed views. Eclipse events are planned throughout North America with local festivals and exhibits.
Everyone is involved from NASA, the National Park Service (it will traverse 26 national parks), airports and even viewing events at zoos along its path. There are even homes especially designed for the viewing.
Located about 15 minutes from Ann Arbor, the 9,025-square-foot Palladian-style observatory mansion took ten years to design and build. In addition to the observatory, the home has a long list of features including five serious man caves. Down a long wooded drive, visitors step into the center oval of the house and an inlaid compass rose from which all other rooms radiate. Above is the open second floor ringed with bronze balustrades and above that, a domed ceiling with skylight. The most interesting thing about the elliptical room is that you can whisper at the far end and be clearly heard at the other.
All public rooms have an abundance of well-crafted millwork from the wainscoting to the coffered ceilings. A two-story library has a capacity for thousands of books. There are also a metal-working shop, electronics shop and a woodworking shop and carriage house in a separate building connected to the main house through a tunnel, a home theatre, widow's walk, a 1,000-bottle wine cellar and an elevator that covers five floors.
And the pièce de résistance for star gazers: a two-story domed observatory that rotates allowing for a 360-degree view of the night sky, or in the case of an eclipse of the sun, daytime sky.
In addition to its formal, family and hobby rooms, there are four bedrooms, seven baths and a two-story stone screened porch with “singing” bronze screen when the wind blows. The listing agent is Jeffrey Post of Snyder & Company Realtors, Berkshire Hathaway Homes Services in Ann Arbor, Michigan, priced at $5.9 million.