BEND, OR -- The eclipse is just 12 days away, and the preparedness message is getting louder. Tuesday night's "What's Brewing: Eclipse!" event, sponsored by the Bend Chamber of Commerce and City Club of Central Oregon, featured three panelists with various expertise on the topic: Jim Todd, OMSI's Director of Space Science Education, Deschutes County Emergency Manager Sgt. Nathan Garibay, and Kristine McConnell, with the Central Oregon Visitors' Association.
McConnell outlined how best to deal with the large number of visitors Central Oregon is expecting August 16-23. She told the crowd, "What we can all do now, the message that I really think is very simple and for us to pass on: You want to arrive early, stay put, and leave late if you're going to travel, even locally, to get to the path."
Deschutes County Sheriff's Sgt. Garibay spoke about the importance of being prepared for the immense crowds, but stressed the eclipse is not a disaster, per say. "We're not asking anybody to do any different than what we ask them to do year round, when we talk about different impacts or threats that our community faces. I'll tell you whether it's an earthquake, a winter storm, a wind event, or an eclipse, many, many of the same things that you do to prepare will keep your family safe, regardless of what the event is."
And, OMSI's Todd talked about the spectacle of the whole thing. He says excitement over this first coast-to-coast eclipse since World War I is contagious, "It's infectious. People who've seen it before, they want to see it again, and those who've not seen this want to see it because everybody's talking about it. It's a rare event."
Eclipse Coverage on KBND is supported in part by Awnings Unlimited. Shade yourself from the sun with Awnings Unlimited at 5541-389-1619 and awningsunlimited.net.