Skywatchers know that this summer will bring a great event.
Specifically, the "Great American Solar Eclipse," scheduled to darken the daytime across a wide swath of the U.S. in August. This is the first total solar eclipse anywhere in the U.S. outside of Hawaii since 1979 — the year The Dukes of Hazzard debuted.
Draw a line between Oregon and South Carolina and you'll have an idea of the best viewing spots. Accordingly, prime real estate — campsites, for example — has been booked up for months. To the rescue: Oregon, where the Parks and Recreation Department will release 1,000 campsites to procrastinators. According to Lonely Planet, most of the campsites are within the "path of totality," a 60-mile-wide stretch where the eclipse effect will be most pronounced.
Best of all? You cannot beat the prices. Even moderately priced events — like a five-city Total Solar Eclipse Tour hosted by the Milwaukee Public Museum — will run in and around $1,000. The Oregon campsites? Just $10-$31, with an $8 booking fee. We bet you can swing it.
Odd historical curiosity/bookend(?): this eclipse's path of totality falls exclusively within the U.S. — the first to do so since 1776, a date not-at-all historically significant. We're sure the fact that this is just a coincidence.