Some are traveling, while others are staying put, but the eclipse is totally close to their heart.

For some, the solar eclipse on Monday represents a once-in-a-lifetime experience. So what would any self-respecting, space-loving college student do in order to witness the celestial spectacle?

Road trip.

The path of the solar eclipse, in which the moon will completely cover the sun and the sun's tenuous atmosphere — the corona — can be seen, will stretch from Salem, Oregon, to Charleston, South Carolina, according to NASA, the space agency.

Observers outside this path still will see a partial solar eclipse where the moon covers part of the sun's disk.

Daniel Mitchell, a fifth-year engineering student at Rochester Institute of Technology and a Canandaigua resident, is among the members of RIT’s Space Exploration Team, which is a faculty-student research group.

Mitchell, along with fellow students T.J. Tarazevits, David Breen and Austin Bodzas, are planning to arrive in Tennessee on Sunday night after a 12-hour trip in order to better witness the total eclipse.

“We are huge space enthusiasts and can’t wait to see the full eclipse for the first time,” Mitchell said in an email. “Our goal is to promote space-related engineering at RIT, and we hope to someday launch RIT’s first satellite.”

Closer to home, others are planning to catch eclipse fever in different ways, including a launch of a different sort.

With the help of a weather balloon, Tory Carissimo is hoping to capture images of the full eclipse from up above.

Carissimo and his Overlook Horizon High Altitude Balloons are planning a launch Monday from Canandaigua Academy to coincide with the celestial event. (A change in forecast could result in a change in launch location, up to 7 a.m.. Monday.) 

“We plan to launch at exactly the starting point and we’ll have a camera that faces the sun,” said Carissimo, who is a 2004 Canandaigua Academy graduate. “I don’t know how well the footage is going to be, but we should hopefully get something out of it.”

The launch, which is his last of the year, is partly being done out of curiosity and partly for bragging rights. He is part of a group known as the Global Space Balloon Challenge, which in the spring offers prizes to weather balloonists for best photos, videos and educational experiences. This year, it’s an eclipse contest, but win or not, Carissimo is excited.

“Even if the footage comes back and it’s just OK, just to be able to launch it and say you had a balloon up during it, it’s pretty exciting to see,” he said. “I think it will also be exciting to share with all of our followers, students and educators, just to show them what we are able to accomplish.”

Members of Scout Pack 50 are gathering at Pumpkin Hook Park in Farmington at 2 p.m. Monday. And the Scouts who attend not only will get to see the eclipse — and doing so with protective glasses — but they will earn the BSA 2017 Solar Eclipse patch.

Nicole Kirsch, whose husband Jake Kirsch is assistant cub master, said the Scouts also will be using a pinhole viewer to witness and learn about the rarity of the event.

“Our Scouts are super excited about this event,” Kirsch said. “Many of them have been counting down the days. We have boys that don’t even belong to Scouts yet who are coming to see what fun our pack is.”

Roseland Waterpark in Canandaigua also will be marking the occasion by handing out free viewing glasses to the first 100 guests in line on Monday, with a special $21 all-day admission ticket.

Bristol Mountain Aerial Adventures also is marking the day, with a do-it-yourself solar eclipse viewer project prior to a climbing event in the Aerial Adventure Park. The plan is to view the eclipse at the summit of Bristol Mountain, but the event is by reservation only (call 585-374-1180 or visit, said Drew Broderick, director of sales and marketing for both attractions.

Fortunately, the weather forecast is calling for sunshine on Monday. But given the rainy season so far, fingers are crossed.

“We can only pray,” Broderick said.

And speaking of special viewing glasses, good luck.

NASA said the only safe way to look directly at the eclipse is through special-purpose solar filters, such as “eclipse glasses” or hand-held solar viewers.

Unless you already have a pair, you might have to wait to see photos and video that others provide, as many spots in the area are sold out of the glasses.

Ed Varno, executive director of the Ontario County Historical Society, had 15 pairs of glasses and on social media urged a $10 donation for each. Gone, in about 20 minutes, he said.

“Unbelievable,” Varno said. “They’re the hottest items in town.”

Phelps Community Memorial Library Central Library Executive Director Leah Hamilton was sent 1,000 pairs of the special glasses through a grant from the Space Science Institute. She has since heard that 7,000 applications were made.

The library distributed all of its glasses in about a week, and that included instituting a limit of five per family.

Because the library actively promotes science, technology, engineering, arts and technology education, Hamilton said it was imperative the library seek out the glasses so the community could see the eclipse. And she’s thankful it did early enough.

In a two-hour period beginning at 10 a.m. Friday, the library fielded 26 calls about the availability of glasses. They were gone long before then.

“I love it, that they have such an interest,” Hamilton said. “We’re certainly going to be prepared for April 8, 2024.”

That’s when the next total eclipse is supposed to happen, right over New York this time.

Varno said he already is preparing something for whoever the next executive director of the Historical Society will be.

“I will leave a note saying, ‘Make sure you get a bunch of glasses,’” Varno said.

Perhaps by then, Mitchell will be in his chosen career field. He was part of numerous tech-related clubs and activities growing up in Canandaigua, and he counts science and technology as passions.

Space may be his final career frontier.

“I aspire to someday work in the space industry to push the boundaries of human knowledge and exploration,” Mitchell said. “I’ve been told that the 100 percent eclipse is an experience like no other. This massive amount of driving will be worth every second of eclipse totality.”