The smell of barbecue wafted through the air late Sunday morning as hundreds of visitors and residents strolled along Second Street at the Wyoming Eclipse Festival.

The street — which was closed off to vehicles — was lined with vendors selling everything from Wyoming honey and Korean short ribs to eclipse-themed necklaces and paintings.

But some paused from shopping to peer into their futures.

Seated at a table covered with a deep purple velvet cloth, a psychic who goes by the name Gypsy offered customers a hint of the unknown.

“I’m a seer,” she explained. “It’s something that comes very naturally to me.”

She warned a customer that she doesn’t give fake fortunes just to make people happy.

“I tell you exactly what I see,” she said. She also cautioned she wouldn’t tell you when you’d die.

Her customer, Burgandy Schmitt of Green River, agreed to the terms and began shuffling through a stack of tarot cards.

Down the street, Lillian Thomas, 10, was in the market for some new accessories.

“Oh, my God, this is so cute,” she said as she admired one vendor’s handcrafted wallets. “This is the cutest wallet I’ve ever seen.”

The Ohio resident came to Wyoming to see the eclipse and visit with her grandmother, Casper resident Karen Bauer.

Bauer said her visiting family members have been warmly welcomed by locals.

“It seems like the people who’ve come here are being very considerate and friendly, too,” she added.

Many visitors stopped to mark their hometowns on a six-foot-tall world map.

Dozens of countries were already accounted for by noon, including France, India, Cameroon and Australia.

Kris Martens studied the map carefully before sticking a pin in Havre, Montana.

Martens explained she came to Casper because she wanted to view the eclipse with her brother, who is visiting from Oregon.

Even as a young child, her sibling always loved talking about outer space. His eclipse enthusiasm has been contagious.

A few moments after Martens placed her pin, Alberto Villa stuck one in Pisa, Italy.

Villa, who said he was visiting with a group of “astronomy lovers,” crossed his fingers as he explained they’re all hoping for clear weather.

The group has been counting down to the eclipse for years, according to Villa.

“It’s very exciting,” he said.




Local Government Reporter

Katie King joined the Star-Tribune in 2017 and primarily covers issues related to local government. She previously worked as a crime reporter in the British Virgin Islands. Originally from Virginia, Katie is a graduate of James Madison University.

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