In Columbia, Crowds Gather for Solar Eclipse

Mark Garrison Reports From the SC Fairgrounds

WBT's Morning News w/ Bo Thompson
August 21, 2017 - 9:30 am

Ron Tollison/WBT News


Mark Garrison, WBT News

(Columbia, SC) About 100,000 eclipse enthusiasts are descending on Columbia this morning. One guy from Thomasville, North Carolina was first in line by the gates at the fairgrounds. He slept here overnight to make sure he didn't missed this once-in-a-lifetime experience.

There will be plenty of food and music here as people wait for the capital city to go dark for two minutes and 38 seconds this afternoon.

Another man from Pittsburgh was setting up his two cameras here on tripods at the South Carolina fairgrounds. He arrived at 6am to see the eclipse.

Deb Rollison and her husband came from Maryland. "I was privileged to see the total eclipse in 1991 in Hawaii and it is an amazing and spiritual experience," she says. "I wanted my husband Tom to have that same joy."

Columbia one of the cities on the East Coast where it will be total darkness at about 2:40 this afternoon. The population here 134,000 that made nearly double today thanks to the eclipse.

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