Hundreds turn out to see Venus transit at UMKC

KANSAS CITY, Mo. - The lines were so long, many were actually turned away because once the sun set - the view of the transit of Venus vanished.

The UMKC Astronomy Club is used to getting dozens of people each night to view the stars. But on Tuesday, the UMKC group watched as dozens turned to hundreds.

From the third rock from the sun, Venus looked more like a speck.

The naked eye wasn't enough, so UMKC provided the telescopes. Some in the Astronomy Club even had to bring their own to accommodate. If they hadn't, the wait would have seemed even longer

But for 7-year-old Wyatt, the wait was worth it. His passion for space started with his own telescope.

"I actually have a telescope at home that I got for Christmas. It's not one of these where I can look at the sun directly - I will blind myself," Wyatt explained.

He found himself in the White House's orbit earlier this year in a letter to the President.

"I told him I was getting mad I wanted to ride up in the space shuttle, but they were retiring it," he said.

The White House responded in writing thanking him for his letter. Wyatt isn't discouraged. He's still on course for his dream career as an astronaut.

We won't see Venus go across the sun again in our lifetime.

"Unless you can live until 2117 it would be the last one anybody living today will see," said Joe Wright, with the UMKC Observatory.

But we will get a chance to see Mercury in 2016. Mercury makes its way across the sun ten times every 100 years.

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