Actually, the eclipse will start around 6:30 as the Moon moves into the penumbra. This is a weaker shadow that surrounds the umbra, the point at which the the shadow is total and the earth starts "to take a bite out of the moon". It is the umbral shadow that causes the moon to disappear. This eclipse looks to be a great one. Since the Moon and Earth are not perfectly lined up (as witnessed by such a short umbral stage), the Moon is in a position to reflect back the light of both the sunrise and sunset. When this happens, the Moon oftentimes takes on a deep-red (the color of blood) color. In ancient times this "Blood Moon" was a sign of impending doom or disaster.
We went outside at 8:00 and checked on it every 20 minutes up until around 10:00. It was a perfect night. Cold and crisp and a clear sky. The colors were not as vivid as I had hoped but after being clouded out on the last 2 solar events this one was quite a treat!
Unfortunately, I was driving down to Chicago as the eclipse happened. I started out with a great view but as I drove south, the clouds started rolling in and it was totally obscured well before the peak of the event:cry: