Local volunteers needed for solar eclipse weekend

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On Monday August 21st at 11:33 am day will turn to night over Madison County. The Great American Eclipse will pass over Idaho as it travels from Oregon to South Carolina, and with it possibly tens of thousands of visitors will travel to Madison County. Rexburg’s leaders are looking for the community’s help in directing these visitors.

Rexburg has been named by many experts as “possibly the best location in the nation to view the 2017 solar eclipse.” City and County officials are preparing for between 40,000 and 80,000 potential visitors between Friday the 18th and Monday the 21st.

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“All of our park shelters have been reserved for over a year,” says Rexburg City Clerk Blair Kay.

Although park shelters have been reserved, parks will be open on a “first come first serve basis”, and City of Rexburg officials are planning on large crowds at Porter, Smith, Nature, Evergreen and Riverside Parks.

Riverside Park will be the center of Rexburg’s eclipse activities with Rexburg Rapids, and a weekend long “Vendor Village” available for eclipse visitors. In addition, there will be tent camping on the north side of Riverside Park, across the canal.

“We have over 250 spots available with around 100 already reserved,” says Daniel Torres, Assistant Economic Developer. Each of those camping spaces will come with one reserved parking spot.

With so many people expected to converge on Rexburg, leaders are looking for community members to lend a hand in helping direct visitors during the Eclipse Weekend.

“We have opportunities for volunteers at our City Parks, at information booths, first aid booths, and more,” says Mayor Jerry Merrill. “We want to give visitors to Rexburg a great experience. One of the ways that we can do this is by helping out with crowd control at our parks.”

There are over 500 shifts that need to be filled between all the City Parks for the Eclipse Weekend.

To help with some of these needs, the City is utilizing justServe.org to help organize volunteers. Those who wish to participate can simply visit the website and sign up for service opportunities that fit their interests.

Riana Jevne oversees JustServe for the Rexburg area. “This will be a wonderful opportunity for community members to help out the City, meet new people, and enjoy a spectacular natural event,” she said.

Rexburg officials are also looking at what the city may look like after the crowds leave. City officials are planning for a community-wide clean up Monday evening and Tuesday morning following the eclipse.  The City is looking to fill those 500 shifts from Friday to Monday, and having an additional 2,000 volunteers for a community clean up on Monday evening and Tuesday morning.

To sign up and “just serve” go to: justserve.org, for more information.

This article submitted by the City of Rexburg.