Tourists are already planning their stays in WNY to catch a glimpse of the solar eclipse

BUFFALO N.Y. (WIVB) — The solar eclipse is just two and a half months away, and people are already planning their stays in Buffalo for a prime view of the phenomenon. Western New York will be in the line of totality on April 8.

Visit Buffalo Niagara CEO and President Patrick Kaler says they’re not sure how many people the eclipse will bring to the area, but they’re expecting tens of thousands, if not more. He says Buffalo is getting national attention from this, and hotel rooms across the region are already booking up.

“We’ve got great things leading up to the eclipse, and on the day of the eclipse,” Kaler said. “So we’re really excited about the variety of experiences that people can have as well as the hotels that are starting to fill up. We’re excited about the overall potential of a great economic boom that weekend.”

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Angela Berti, director of public information for NYS Parks, said she wants people to start thinking about safety now. The number one safety tip: don’t look directly at the sun when this happens. You have to wear a special kind of goggles or glasses.

“We’re working together on those things, programming, and how to accommodate the thousands of people that will be infiltrating Niagara Falls at that time,” Berti said. “Traffic is another issue, the city of Niagara Falls mayor is cooperating with us, we’re all working together, Niagara Falls police. Trying to anticipate what to expect.”

The city of Niagara Falls is expecting to see thousands of tourists the week of the eclipse. The tourism season in the Falls usually picks up after May, making this a welcome change for businesses.

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Sarah Minkewicz is an Emmy-nominated reporter and Buffalo native who has been a part of the News 4 team since 2019. Follow Sarah on Twitter @SarahMinkewicz and click here to see more of her work.

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