Hopkinsville prepares for influx of 100,000 eclipse visitors
A historic solar eclipse will cross the United States in less than two months, and one small Kentucky town is the center of attention.
HOPKINSVILLE, Ky. (WDRB) -- A historic solar eclipse will cross the United States in less than two months, and one small Kentucky town is the center of attention.
Come Aug. 21, the moon will pass between the sun and the Earth, casting a shadow in a narrow path from Oregon to South Carolina. And Hopkinsville lines up perfectly for a total eclipse.
But the town still a lot of work and planning to do ahead of the big event.
"We know that head numbers are going to be immense compared to the traffic that we usually see," said Brooke Jung, solar eclipse marketing and events consultant.
To make sure the town of about 30,000 people is ready for an expected 100,000 visitors, three different committees met on Wednesday to make sure everyone is on the same page.
As part of the transportation and safety meeting, members from local law enforcement to fire and EMS to the FBI and Homeland security were on hand.\
The No. 1 topic to iron out right now is traffic concerns. Coordinators want to make sure everyone can get in and out of the town safely, especially if there is an emergency.
[We're] making sure we have appropriate signage and digital signs, so that the messages can all be converted to what we want them to say and communicate," Jung said. "As well as signs that are on the sides of the road and billboards. And making sure people know what's happening."
Hopkinsville isn't letting a single detail go unnoticed. The power company is even getting involved to make sure everyone has a perfect experience.
"Another benefit is that we are turning off all our lights around our designated viewing area," Jung said. "So if they were to just pull over on the side of the road, they might have some light interference or some different light pollution that wouldn't be there if they were at one of our designated viewing locations."
While the town is getting ready, you're tight on time to make last-minute plans.
Two campsites are already booked up. Right now, your best bet for a viewing space just for the eclipse is Tie Breaker Park.
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