A total solar eclipse is scheduled to grace the atmosphere in August and millions of people around the world are planning to take part in this heavenly phenomenon. When the moon passes between the Earth and the Sun, there will be almost three total minutes of total darkness in some sections of the United States. Scientists and astronomers have predicted that the best places in the U.S. to experience this rare occurrence is along a diagonal section from Oregon to South Carolina; more specifically, cities like St. Joseph, Missouri and Charleston, S.C. are being held as prime locations to visit during the eclipse.
As a Charleston resident, the thought of any additional traffic coming into the city is damn near frightening, but here are some things that can help you make it through this spectacular, once (or twice) in-a-lifetime event:
WHY IS THIS ECLIPSE SO SPECIAL
They call this event “Path of Totality” and it is said that we are in for an unforgettable experience! This phenomenon is special because this is a continent-wide solar eclipse, the first to be visible since 1776. It is also the first to cross the entire continent of North American in 99 years. As the moon’s shadow is cast across the earth, we have been told that this is a “hauntingly beautiful” site and is symbolic of “great change” – some of us can use some great change in our lives, right! Once the moon totally envelops the sun, it will last only a few minutes, we must be prepared or we will miss it! The good news is another total solar eclipse will darken the skies above Mexico and Texas, up through the Midwest and northeastern U.S in the year 2024!
According to NASA:
“Aug. 21, 2017, may be one of the worst traffic days in national history, some NASA representatives predict. Although about 12 million people live within the narrow band of totality, approximately 25 million reside within a day’s drive of it, and the agency has estimated that the population inside the path of totality may double on the day of the eclipse.”
So How to Plan: (1) Hotels along the eclipse’s path have been booked for months (or years) so if you are traveling, there may be some issues with last minute planning (2) if you plan to go out to view the eclipse be aware of your proximity to food, water, parking, and facilities. (3) even traveling short distances around town will be hectic on this day
SCHOOLS ARE CLOSED
City officials have decided on August 21st schools will be closed for safety reasons. The city will experience total darkness for approximately 2.5 minutes, and for the safety of every child, parents are being asked to keep their children home on this day. The good news is this will alleviate some of the already horrible traffic issues in Charleston, SC and surrounding areas.
IF YOU HAVE A BUSINESS, TAKE ADVANTAGE OF THIS NEW CUSTOMER BASE
People from around the world are traveling to different cities to experience this eclipse. Restaurants, gas stations, in many cities are prepping for this event like its the Superbowl. If you have a business, create ways to generate revenue, eclipse tshirts, eclipse cupcakes, etc! Be creative!
DON’T FORGET YOUR ECLIPSE SUNGLASSES
Looking directly at the sun, even when it is partially covered by the moon, can cause serious eye damage or blindness. DO NOT look at a partial solar eclipse without proper eye protection! Sunglasses CANNOT be used in place of Solar Viewing Glasses. The glasses above can be found on Amazon in a 6 pack for about $21, they are the Solar Eclipse Glasses – CE and ISO Certified Safe Shades for Direct Sun Viewing – Viewer & Filter – Made in USA (6 Pack) – Astronaut American Flag. Here’s a Guide to buying the best eye protection for the eclipse – BEWARE OF SELLERS WHO ARE HUSTLING FAKE GLASSES.
We will be doing another blog to list the cool events happening for the Eclipse celebrations around town. In the meantime, check out the Charleston Museum, Outdoor Adventure Tour Boats, Patriots Point, Citadel Mall and a plethora of other businesses who are having SAFE-VIEWING events around town!