Mt Pleasant News

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Neighbors Growing Together | Jul 18, 2018

A view for everyone

West Liberty Foods gives employees break for eclipse
Aug 22, 2017
Photo by: Grace King Employees at West Liberty Foods bantered back and forth with one another as they watched the moon glide over the sun. They were given a company-wide break for the solar eclipse on Aug. 21.

By Grace King, Mt. Pleasant News


Employees at West Liberty Foods began trickling out of the building at 12:50 p.m. on Aug. 21, with company-provided, certified eclipse glasses in hand ready to see the total solar eclipse. It was a decision made by the CEO of the meat and poultry manufacturing company to rearrange the factory’s schedule to allow employees to view the “once in a lifetime” astronomical event.

Mark Eads, plant manager, praised the decision made by the CEO. “We’re swamped right now, but it’s worth the 15 minutes of down time to let our employees enjoy this,” he said, adding that with a lot of them working weekends and evening shifts, it’s still important to have good work/life balance.

“I was trying to plan my lunch break around (the eclipse), but then they announced this,” Donald Hensley said, lifting his eclipse glasses to his eyes. “Wow, that’s something.” He said that he had several employees take vacation days to travel to an area of totality.

The general consensus of the afternoon was that people were glad the company gave them the opportunity to view the solar eclipse. While some chatted with one another, holding their glasses up to their face every so often to check the moon’s progress, others stood with eyes glued to the sun, taking in the momentousness of the moment.

Erik Richardson said that he was surprised and grateful that the clouds cleared seemingly just in time for the event. “I kept watching the storm. I’m glad it held off,” he said.

“It’s like the fingernail of God,” Tammi Noble said with a little chuckle during the peak time of the eclipse.

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