Solar eclipse a clear favorite as year’s most memorable story

People will not soon forget where they were and what they were doing when the sky went dark just after high noon on Aug. 21, 2017. A total solar eclipse that dramatically came and went over Hamilton County that day left a lasting impression, easily topping a random sample of ANR readers asked to rank the top stories of the year.
The News-Register conducted its annual news survey last week, seeking reader input on what the community as a whole perceives to be the Top 10 stories of the year. It’s a very subjective, non-scientific process from by its nature, but always a fun and interesting one.
We scanned our pages from January through December, taking note of on-going issues and timely, breaking news. Then we asked local residents from all walks of life to weigh in, ranking their top 10 choices.
Coming in at No. 1, as you can read in this week’s front page story, was a spectacle you had to see to fully believe and appreciate. When the moon rolled across the mid-day sky, completely blocking the sun from view, it created 2 minutes and 31 seconds worth of sensation we’ll never see or feel again here in Hamilton County. If felt like the twilight zone in real time and for many was an emotional experience, as well as a visual one.
The No. 2 story was unusual for rural America, intense for law enforcement, and just plain bizarre. What could have, should have been a routine I-80 traffic stop ended up in a 30-hour manhunt, the kind of story we’re used to seeing someplace other than here at home.
The No. 3 story was much more fun, creating lifelong memories for student-athletes and fans alike. Several local teams and individuals won gold as state champions in 2017, offering indisputable evidence, at the moment and years from today, that they were in fact the best at that point in time during their glory days.
The most memorable story, however, wasn’t based on breaking news, athletic heroics and in fact wasn’t man-made or even of this earth. The solar eclipse was, by unanimous consensus, a totality awesome view we will never, ever forget.
Here’s to you and your’s, hoping we all make more lasting memories in 2018. Happy New Year!
Kurt Johnson

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