Committee plans eclipse forum

10 months ago

HOULTON, Maine — The Southern Aroostook Development Corporation’s Attraction Committee continues planning for the total solar eclipse taking place across Maine on April 8, 2024. 

The town of Houlton will be the last place to view the eclipse in the United States and will experience one of the longest periods of total darkness in the state.  

The committee began planning for the Maine eclipse two years ago and has finalized its marketing strategy. The group is now shifting gears to logistics and safety planning as well as community outreach. 

“The  opportunities that this event can provide businesses and residents alike are almost infinite,” said Johanna Johnston, executive director of the development corporation and eclipse event coordinator. 

“The sheer number of visitors that we are anticipating for this event we can’t possibly host with our current inventory of motels and hotels in Houlton, or even the surrounding region,” she said. This is the perfect chance for residents who have second homes, camps, ADUs or even just a spare room to try out AirBnb or VRBO and make a little extra money while showing visitors why we  love Aroostook County,” she said. 

Since Houlton is a rural community with little public transportation, residents can also sign up and make money with ridesharing companies like Uber or Lyft, Johnston said. 

The Eclipse Committee will host a public open forum at 6 p.m. on Tuesday May 30, at  the Houlton High School Auditorium to inform the community about what to expect, opportunities available and give them a chance to ask questions and get involved. 

Many prominent community businesses and major venue sponsors are working to plan events in the key viewing areas for the entire weekend. The event provides opportunities to market the area to visitors and show them why it’s a great place to l ive, work and play, Johnston said. 

For information, visit maineeclipse.com or contact Johnston at (207) 521-0157.