July 28, 2014
When you think of downtown Moline, you probably don't think about an astronomical calendar or any similarity to Stonehenge in England. But that could change soon if Curt Roseman has his way - he calls it "Moline-henge."
The retired geography professor was inspired by Manhattan-henge - the days each year near the summer solstice when sunrise is aligned perfectly with some downtown New York streets. And then it "dawned" on him that 5th Avenue in Moline might also be lined up just right.
"The idea is to stand at the western end and observe the sunrise as it's coming up through the 'canyon.' Of course the Manhattan version of this is much more spectacular because they truly have canyons with very tall buildings - Moline has rather short buildings. But still it's the same idea of finding that point when the sun rises into that little slot."
Last summer he got up early on several days in late July, and concluded July 29th each year would be the best day for Moline-henge.
So at 5:55 am Tuesday he'll be out on 5th Avenue, between 11th and 12th Streets, just the way early man showed up at Stonehenge on the solstice so many centuries ago.
"If we get a crwod and some interest is generated, why not continue it as an annual festival. How many fesetivals do you know that are at 5:55 in the morning?"
If it's cloudy he'll try on Wednesday.
(photo - courtesy of Curt Roseman - Molinehenge 2013)