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Eclipse viewers descend upon the Valley
October 28, 2016 Jerry Purvis   

Read more by Jerry Purvis

Map courtesy of NASA The Solar Eclipse 2017 map shows the path of visibility and the timeline for viewing the total eclipse of the sun scheduled to take place on August 21, 2017.

On August 21, 2017, Nebraska will become one of the best locations to view a “once in a lifetime” occurrence, a total solar eclipse. The path of it crosses diagonally from the lower right hand part of the state through Scotts Bluff County.

Making the community aware, 10 tourism organizations from across the state have formed the Nebraska Eclipse Coalition.

“This is the first time in the history of the tourism industry that communities have come together to market an event across the state,” said coalition member Lora Young, Executive Director of the Beatrice Chamber of Commerce.

Young said the upcoming eclipse is special because it will be the first total eclipse in Nebraska in 99 years. The next one won’t happen for another 400 years.

About 40 percent of Nebraska, 200 communities covering about 30,000 square miles, lies within the path of the total eclipse.

“All of Nebraska will experience the eclipse in some form,” Young said. We’re urging people to learn more about this event at neclipse17.com. We’ll keep updating the site as we get close to the event.”

In 2017, August 21, is a Monday and the total eclipse will occur around noon to early afternoon.

“Experts have said Nebraska is one of the best places to view the eclipse,” Young said. “We have a good record of clear skies with no mountains or trees to block the view. The weather pattern looks to be excellent.”

The coalition will be marketing to the Denver and Minneapolis areas, as well as other points across the region. So far, calls have been coming in from New York and several foreign countries.

Young said she visited with people from Kansas who are bringing their family over from England to witness the astronomical event.

She’s also talked with die-hard “eclipse chasers” who travel the world to view solar eclipses, wherever they occur.
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