Shooting stars, meteor showers and lunar phases have always fascinated astrology lovers and amateurs alike, but the solar eclipse happening this Monday isn’t just for space enthusiasts – tourists are traveling near and far to witness this rare event.
What’s Going On?
On Monday, August 21 a total solar eclipse will travel across the entire United States for the first time since 1918. Although the Earth experiences eclipses every 18 months or so, they are usually only partial eclipses and difficult to see from North America. This Monday, the moon will completely block the sun’s light and cast a shadow which will move across the United States passing over Oregon all the way to South Carolina.
How It’s Affecting Tourism
Experts are anticipating this Monday to be an enormous day for the tourism sector, with up to 7.4 million people traveling to locations along the eclipse path. As the first major city on the path, Salem, Oregon is expecting more than 100,000 people to visit (almost double the town’s usual population). Whereas areas with clearer skies like Casper, Wyoming have taken hotel and campground reservations for this day as early as three years ago.
With hotels rendered almost completely unavailable for any last minute travelers, many people are turning towards home renting companies like Airbnb. But even Airbnb locations are going fast as well, forcing people to turn to pricey options like a five-bedroom ranch house in Madras which is available for the small price of $10,000 per night during the eclipse!
Restaurants and other attractions along the path will also be benefitting from the influx of people. The South Carolina State Museum estimates that it will generate nearly $235,000 from eclipse-related activities and restaurants that are typically closed on Saturdays or Sundays are staying open. In fact, Pillar Bar, one of our clients in Asheville North Carolina is opening early and will be offering lunar themed drink specials in honor of the historic event!
Will You See It?
Even if you don’t live right in the eclipse path, you should still be able to see at least a partial eclipse from any point in the continental United States. For more information NASA provides several detailed maps of the anticipated eclipse path on their website, while Time and Date shows maps, time schedules and other eclipse-related information.
This Monday be sure to enjoy the first American coast-to-coast lunar eclipse in 99 years!
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