HASBROUCK HEIGHTS - With the much anticipated solar eclipse taking place on Monday, August 21 between 1:20 p.m. and 4:10 p.m. (EDT), New Jersey State Interscholastic Athletic Association Medical Advisory Committee Chair Dr. Jack Kripsak advised NJSIAA members to proceed with caution in a memo to athletic directors early last week. Kripsak warned that while the eclipse won’t interfere with daily activities, looking directly into the corona visible around the edge of the moon can result in irreversible severe eye damage.
NJSIAA has asked athletic directors and coaches to educate students and plan scrimmages and practice times accordingly since unusual darkness will occur during the eclipse. As a result, students without proper guidance or eyewear could be at risk.
One group that will be impacted is the Hasbrouck Heights High School Marching Band. Since the school building is closed due to installation of the new heating system, band camp will be held outdoors on Hitchcock Field all week.
"Since we truly do not know the potential dangers to the eye while staring at the eclipse and band camp is outside during the entire solar eclipse event, it has been decided to end camp on Monday at 12:45 p.m., " Athletic Director Michael Scuilla stated in a note to band parents.
When questioned on what steps Wood-Ridge High School would be taking, Athletic Director David Porfido stated that a precautionary email was sent to all coaches earlier in the week. However, Wood-Ridge did not have any scheduled practices/scrimmages during the anticipated eclipse times.
The Hasbrouck Heights Junior Football League teams won't be effected on Monday as football practice starts after 6 p.m. The cheerleaders aren't scheduled to practice on Monday.
The Hasbrouck Heights Soccer Association will also not be impacted as practices for that youth organization does start until 5 p.m.
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