New Yorker's favorite urban phenomenon is almost upon us—the first date for Manhattanhenge 2011 is happening this Monday. And it's the perfect excuse to head into the abyss of Manhattan this Memorial Day weekend!
The visually stunning event occurs twice a year, when the sun sets in perfect alignment with Manhattan’s street grid—it will fully illuminate every single cross-street for the last 15 minutes of daylight. It will take place on Monday at 8:17 p.m. according to astrophysicist Neil deGrasse Tyson. There will also be a half-sun effect on Tuesday at 8:25 p.m. The second date this year will take place on Monday, July 11 at 8:25 p.m., and there will be a half-sun on Tuesday July 12 at 8:25 p.m.
NY Daily News photographer John Taggert, gave some tips for Manhattanhenge enthusiasts who want to capture the event: “[Manhattanhenge] passes by very quickly, so you’ll want to set a high aperture of about 11, a shutter speed of 1/2500 of a second, and shoot the sun from an overpass...the sun is moving quickly; you have to keep shooting until it’s perfectly centered between the buildings.”
For newcomers to the event, he suggests you position yourself as far east in Manhattan as possible, while making sure when you look west across the avenues you can still see New Jersey. Ideal streets include 14th, 23rd, 34th. 42nd, and 57th.