New Yorkers will get to experience some breathtaking scenery today and tomorrow (May 29-30) as "Manhattanhenge" will make an appearance, Live Science reported.
Known to happen only twice each year, the setting sun will perfectly align tonight with the Manhattan street grid, illuminating every cross street straight down the middle on the borough's grid system, ABC News reported.
The term, which was made popular by Hayden Planetarium director and astrophysicist Neil deGrasse Tyson, is a play on Stonehenge as it refers to times during the year when the sun perfectly lines up with the New York City grid in a way that is reminiscent of what happens at Stonehenge on the summer solstice.
In addition to tonight, the other Manhattanhenge events are scheduled to occur on May 30 at 8:18 p.m., July 11 at 8:24 p.m. and July 12 at 8:25 p.m., with the sun half above and half below the horizon.
Manhattanhenge occurs because the borough's street grid is turned 30 degrees east from due north, according to ABC News.
"Had Manhattan's grid been perfectly aligned with the geographic north-south line, then the days of Manhattanhenge would coincide with the equinoxes," Tyson wrote in a blog post.
He said the cosmic event "may just be a unique urban phenomenon in the world, if not the universe."
The first Manhattanhenge occurrence will begin tonight just after 8 p.m., UPI reported.
"For best effect, position yourself as far east in Manhattan as possible. But ensure that when you look west across the avenues you can still see New Jersey," deGrasse Tyson advises. "Clear cross streets include 14th, 23rd, 34th. 42nd, 57th, and several streets adjacent to them. The Empire State building and the Chrysler building render 34th street and 42nd streets especially striking vistas."
A variation in which the lower edge of the glowing orb just touches the horizon when aligned with the grid happens on May 30 and July 11.