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On August 21, 2017, millions of people across the United States will see a total eclipse of the Sun. South Carolina will be a significant destination for the eclipse because it will be the nearest spot within the path of totality for at least 100 million Americans in the Atlantic Seaboard and Florida.Cell phone service and smartphone Internet are expected to be unavailable inside the path of totality due to the large concentration of people. Cell phone companies will reinforce their network capacity for emergency responders. However, this will not increase capacity for commercial use. Visitors to South Carolina for the eclipse are encouraged to print paper versions of directions, lodging and restaurant reservations, and tickets to local eclipse events they plan to attend.Reputable Vendors of Solar Filters & Viewers, according to the American Astronomical Society and the National Science Foundation.

Sumter Residents Look Forward to August Eclipse, Recall the Eclipse of 1970

On Aug. 21, a total solar eclipse will be seen along a roughly 70-mile wide path through South Carolina from the Upstate through Greenville and Columbia to Charleston.
NASA/Hinode/XRT, via Wikimedia Commons
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On Aug. 21, a total solar eclipse will be seen along a roughly 70-mile wide path through South Carolina from the Upstate through Greenville and Columbia to Charleston.

This summer’s total solar eclipse is a rare event for the Palmetto State.  Normally a total eclipse doesn’t return to the same spot for close to 400 years, but this will be the second in only 47 years for the folks in Sumter and the surrounding area.  Hap Griffin remembers seeing the last eclipse as an 11-year-old on March 7, 1970.  He said he still recalls how "blown away" he was in the backyard of a friend.  
 
Nearby, the Rev. Joel Osborne climbed a forest tower to take in the awesome celestial  event, and it was a push along his spiritual journey, he said.   Both men are eagerly looking forward to the upcoming eclipse on Aug. 21. While Griffin, an amateur astronomer and astronomical photographer, plans to take in the event in Wyoming, Osborne chuckled "if I can get back on the tower, I’ll get back on the tower…if it’s still there."