As a Born and bred Wiltshire-man I have an affinity for Stonehenge – I was actually born in Salisbury so can claim a link. Visiting the stones is special, they may only be large monoliths but there is a feeling of something significant there. Obviously the solstice is the big event there – and no I haven’t ever been there for it and I am not a Druid! But when the sun settles between the stones during the Summer Solstice it must look amazing. And this week I discovered that there is an American version – in Manhattan!
They call it “Manhattanhenge”.
The effect occurs twice a year and has become a major event for people to watch and photograph. It doesn’t occur on the solstice due to the alignment of the avenues – but it is still amazing to see.
Last Wednesday night was this summers, the east-west lying streets of the city’s grid system framed the setting sun, creating golden glows New Yorker’s rarely see. During the phenomenon, the Sun appears to be nestled perfectly between the skyscraper corridors, illuminating the north and south sides of the streets – a rare event in the canyons that are Manhattan..
The term Manhattanhenge first appeared in 1996, and has now stuck. I would love to see this and photograph it (although getting a good shot without being run down by the yellow cabs would be a challenge in its self!)
I wonder if in a thousands of years archeologists finding the remains of Manhattan will have theories about the line of the streets being related to sun worship!