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40 Days Until Total Solar Eclipse: Community Continues Planning

by Stephanie Baker

The Feb. 28 community eclipse meeting marked the 40-day countdown to the Total Social Eclipse.

Director of Emergency Management Rickey Casey presented a list of problem areas collected from reports of cities that were in the path of the 2017 total eclipse. These areas included traffic, fuel shortages, lack of cell service, lack of accommodations for tourists, and not enough solar eclipse glasses.

Vice President of the Clarksville-Johnson County Chamber of Commerce Abby Acensio assured Casey the Chamber would have several thousand pairs of glasses available for purchase over the eclipse weekend, in addition to the ones available from the University of the Ozarks and the free pairs available at the Johnson County Public Library.

Acensio stated the Chamber was working to have all landowners renting space and event organizers register with the Chamber, so information would be on hand in case of emergencies. The Chamber is also planning to host events for visitors throughout the weekend, including a 5K fun run and an 80s themed block party.

Staff members of the Johnson County Senior Activity Center inquired about accommodations that would need to be made for their daily Meals on Wheels deliveries. The meals they provide are essential to care for elderly adults who may not be able to get groceries or cook for themselves. A Center representative stated they also planned to host a watch party for senior adults to safely view and celebrate totality.

Casey recommended the Center prepare to deliver extra meals ahead of the eclipse, cautioning them against attempting to make deliveries on the day of the eclipse. He urged them to prepare in the days prior like it was an ice storm to ensure all senior adults would be able to receive the necessary meal service. Casey offered to help the Center with further planning for the event.

Patrolman Todd Russell of the Clarksville Police Department said, “When you get this many people together, things can go a little haywire,” but confirmed the department was working on plans to limit traffic congestion…To read the complete story, please check out the March 6 edition of The Graphic, available online or at various locations in Johnson County.


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