Mayan calendar nears end: Doomsday or party?


If you're a doomsday believer, you're likely stocking up on emergency supplies in preparation for the end as we know it at exactly 3:11 p.m. Friday. Many people have been building underground bunkers, shelters, collecting food, water and other supplies ahead of the big day.

However, NASA says we have nothing to worry about. Friday may mark the end of the Mayan calendar, but a new era will begin. There are no planets headed our way to collide with Earth, there won't be a polar shift - we'll be just fine.

So while some plan to sit in a bunker sipping bottled water, others plan on going to the Hotel Maya in Long Beach and taking advantage of the occasion to party. The Fuego Restaurant at the Hotel Maya is offering a variety of Mayan-inspired drinks on Friday and also giving away bucket-list prizes including opportunities for sky-diving, NASCAR driving and paddle boarding.

But can the end of the world be a good thing? With so many people talking about Doomsday 2012, the folks over at the Griffith Observatory see it as a great learning opportunity.

"There's a level of it that's actually excellent because it focuses attention on science, on critical thinking and for that matter on the Griffith Observatory," said Ed Krupp, director at the observatory.

The Griffith Observatory is also getting in on the action. It usually closes at 10 p.m. on Fridays, but it will open until 12:01 a.m. Saturday.

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