It's an event 99 years in the making.
The Great American Eclipse, the first total solar eclipse in the United States since 1979, will occur Monday, Aug. 21.
But, more significantly, it is the first total solar eclipse visible across the entire contiguous U.S. since 1918.
The eclipse's path of totality — in which the moon completely covers the sun and the sun's corona can be seen — will arc from Salem, Ore., to Charleston, S.C.
Chattanooga is just south of the path of totality. The eclipse will begin here about 1:02 p.m. with 99.55 percent of the light being obscured at 2:32 p.m. The phenomenon will end about 3:58 p.m.
But in Bradley and McMinn counties, businesses and individuals are capitalizing on their locations in the path of totality. Thousands of visitors will pour into those counties this weekend to witness the solar eclipse — and outdoor adventures companies are ready.
Imagine ziplining beneath a forest canopy as the light from above gradually dims. Or rafting the Ocoee while the sun disappears. They are two of several outdoor packages being offered for eclipsers wishing to immerse themselves in nature.
Staff at Adventures Unlimited say their company's whitewater rafting trips have been completely booked for two months, and only now are a few spots opening up due to last-minute cancellations.
"A group of senior friends from the Chattanooga area who call themselves the Cumberlands Hikers plan to hike on the Cumberland Trail along the Piney River in Spring City," says Carol Hobbs. "We plan to be seated by (or in) the river when the eclipse occurs. We have our viewing glasses ready and will take along a trail lunch."
"Golfers who register for the Project Access Golf Classic will be on the greens as the moon covers the sun," says Kevin Lusk with the Medical Foundation of Chattanooga. "They'll be able to view this incredible phenomenon with eclipse viewing glasses that are part of their gift bags."
Whether watching from your backyard or attending one of the area's many viewing parties, Monday is a day for making memories. Following are 30 locations where you can keep an eye on the sky.
Contact Susan Pierce at firstname.lastname@example.org or 423-757-6284.
* Chattanooga Zoo: 301 N. Holtzclaw Ave., 1:30-3:30 p.m., Chattanooga Zoo and Sunny 92.3 partner for viewing party; kids receive free admission into the zoo if they bring their own viewing glasses, bring a blanket or camp chair for seating. 423-697-1322.
* GreenSpaces: 63 Main St., 1-3:30 p.m. GreenSpaces, Tennessee Solar Solutions and Crash Pad partner for casual party followed by viewing at Crash Pad. Sold out.
* McDonald Farm: 16705 Coulterville Road, Sale Creek, noon-4 p.m., $5 parking fee. 423-531-2676.
* Project Access Golf Tournament: Chattanooga Golf and Country Club, 1511 Riverview Road, 1 p.m. shotgun start, $200 individual, $800 for a foursome, fee includes range balls, use of practice facilities and boxed lunch. Benefits Project Access, which provides medical care to people without insurance. www. paclassic.eventbrite.com
* Reflection Riding Arboretum & Nature Center: 400 Garden Road, noon-4 p.m., members free, $10 nonmember adults, $7 nonmember children and senior adults. Purchase a membership or daily admission to receive a free pair of eclipse glasses. 423-821-1160
* Rock City Gardens: 1400 Patten Road, noon-3 p.m., regular admission of $19.95 adults, $11.95 children. Meteorologist David Karnes and radio personalities from J103 will be on hand. Safety glasses sold while supplies last. 706-821-2531.
* Tennessee Aquarium: 1 Broad St., noon to 3 p.m., watch NASA's Eclipse 2017 megacast live-streamed in the River Journey auditorium. www.tnaqua.org.
* Cleveland-Bradley Public Library: 795 Church St., Cleveland, Tenn., 1-4 p.m., free, stories and crafts on Jarnigan House porch, free hot dogs, science chat in the community room. 423-472-2163.
* Solar Eclipse Apple Barn Open House: Howe Farms, 7600 Runyan Road, Georgetown, Tenn., 1:30-4 p.m., free open house at wedding venue with pizza, ice cream and drinks provided. 423-362-4517.
* Cumberland Mountain State Park: 24 Office Drive, Crossville, Tenn. Start the day at Bear Trace at Cumberland Mountain Golf Course for a 5K at 7:30 a.m. CDT. A viewing party at the park will be held 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. CDT with music, bounce house for kids, food tents, guided hikes by rangers, free or purchase a $50 VIP package that includes special parking, seating and food voucher. 931-484-6138.
* Dark Side of the Moon: Oaklawn Farm, 5754 Highway 70, Crossville, Tenn., music from 2:30 p.m. to midnight CDT, $25 ages 11 and older, limited to 200 guests. www.eventbrite.com.
* Bryan College: 721 Bryan Drive, Dayton, Tenn., viewing stations near Rudd Auditorium, 1 p.m., all guests must wear viewing glasses and bring their own, bring camp chair, water and sunscreen. At 1 and 1:30 p.m., Dr. Lyle Smith will present "What Is an Eclipse?" and Dr. Jud Davis will present "Eclipses and Scripture: What the Bible Says About These Occurrences" inside Rudd Auditorium.
* Tiger Totality Solar Eclipse: Chattanooga State Community College satellite campus, 200 N. Fourth Ave., Dayton, Tenn., noon-4 p.m. Meet on the football field for viewing party with program on eye safety at noon presented by Chattanooga State's Division of Nursing and Allied Health. All participants must sign a waiver to attend. Viewing glasses will be provided while supplies last. Bring lawn chairs, snacks, water bottle. 423-697-2576.
* Meigs County-Decatur Public Library Viewing Party: Parking lot of Piggly Wiggly, 17619 Highway 58, Decatur, Tenn., 12:30-3:30 p.m., free eclipse glasses while supplies last, bring lawn chair. www.facebook.com/MeigsCountyLibrary.
* Eclipse Extravaganza: L&N Depot, 727 Tennessee Ave., Etowah, Tenn., noon-4 p.m., family-friendly games and activities. 423-263-2228
* Hang Out in the Dark: Starr Mountain Outfitters, 601 Tennessee Ave., Etowah, Tenn., noon-8 p.m., music by Cole Sitzlar, Tyson Leamon and Chris Hennessee, food trucks and vendors, fireworks finale. Bring a camp chair. 423- 761-7695.
* Total Eclipse at the Park: Athens Regional Park Drive, Athens, Tenn., 10 a.m. to 3 p.m., live entertainment, games sponsored by Mayfield Dairy Farms, vendors. 423-745-0334.
* Niota Total Eclipse Festival: Downtown Niota, begins at 12:30 p.m. Concert by Michael Mayes Family and Vicky Gould, food vendors and guest speaker Michael Genest from the Johnson Space Center in Houston, Texas. Free viewing glasses while supplies last. 423-568-2584.
* Eclipse Party: Grace Point Camp and Retreat Center, 300 Chamberlain Cove Road, Kingston, Tenn., noon-6 p.m., $5. Potluck lunch in pavilion at noon followed by viewing. Bring your own viewing glasses.
* Adventures Unlimited: 522 Highway 64, Ocoee, Tenn. Eclipse rafting trips along Middle Ocoee River with space-themed dinner, live music and giveaways. 800-662-0667.
* Copperhill Solar Special: Meet at 9406 Highway 411, Delano,Tenn., 9:30 a.m-6:45 p.m. Tennessee Valley Railroad Museum excursion has sold out.
* Copperhill/McCaysville Street Party: Street party in twin small towns, noon-4 p.m., food and craft vendors, live music.
* East Polk Public Library: 136 Main St., Ducktown, Tenn., solar discussions, free eclipse glasses while supplies last. 423-548-4004.
* Hiwassee/Ocoee State Park: 404 Spring Creek Road, Delano, Tenn., 1-4 p.m. Sold Out.
* Total Solar Eclipse Over Ocoee Country: 3708 Highway 30, Reliance, Tenn., gates open at noon, family-friendly event with storytelling, viewing glasses while supplies last, food trucks and craft vendors.
* Wildwater Ocoee River Basin Canopy Tours: 5000 Highway 64, Ducktown, Tenn. Eclipse Zipline trips, experience the stages of the eclipse from a zipline under the forest canopy. 423-496-4904.
* Spring City Eclipse Festival: Weekend of activities in downtown Spring City, Tenn., starts Saturday with festival in Veterans Park with food and craft vendors, children's activities. The Spring City Eclipse 5K will be held Sunday morning. Several viewing areas are designated around town Monday afternoon for eclipse viewing.
* Eclipse Party: Downtown Sweetwater, Tenn., 10 a.m.-5 p.m., food vendors. 423-442-4588.
* Sweetwater Valley Farm Eclipse Watch: Sweetwater Valley Farm, 17988 W. Lee Highway, Philadelphia, Tenn., noon-4 p.m., $2.50-$15, food trucks on-site for purchasing lunch. Bring lawn chairs. www.eventbrite.com.
* Standing in the Shadow of the Moon: Charles Hall Museum and Cherohala Skyway Visitor Center, 229 Cherohala Skyway, Tellico Plains, Tenn., $5 parking fee, members of Smoky Mountain Astronomy Club on-site, music and Cherokee storyteller describing Cherokees' connection to sun, moon and stars. 423-253-8000.