Daniel Schneiderman, Eclipse expert, visits del Lago Resort & Casino in Seneca County to discuss 2024 total solar eclipse

2024 is going to be an exciting year for astronomy lovers, especially with a full total solar eclipse happening on April 8. The last time Rochester residents were able to see a full total solar eclipse was on January 24, 1925. The next total solar eclipse in the U.S. won't be until August 12, 2045. For New York State, the next total solar eclipse will be May 1, 2079.

This means people will travel a great distance to witness this once-in-a-lifetime event.

Eclipse expert standing in front of ballroom chairs and tables giving a presentation on the solar eclipse

On Tuesday August 8, 2023, Daniel Schneiderman, Eclipse Partnerships Coordinator for the Rochester Museum and Science Center, visited del Lago Resort & Casino on behalf of the Seneca County Chamber of Commerce to discuss the upcoming event.

Why is the total solar eclipse in 2024 a big deal for businesses?

This event is a big deal for businesses because of the influx of visitors that are to be expected in New York State. Rochester and Buffalo are in the direct line of the solar eclipse, but areas in the Finger Lakes Region can expect traffic as well. So much traffic is expected that many local school districts are extending spring break until after the day of the eclipse. This will help keep buses off the roads while traffic is expected to cause major delays.

This is a great opportunity for businesses for many reasons. Many visitors hoping to catch a view of the eclipse will be looking for a place to stay, eat, and shop leading up to and after the eclipse. Seneca County is right on the edge, meaning it may be a shorter viewing time than Rochester or Buffalo, but the chance to see the total eclipse is right here in Seneca County.

What we can expect the day of the eclipse

White slide with purple writing showing the eclipse details of April 8 2024 in the Finger Lakes region

A map showing exactly where a view of the total eclipse can be seen in the Finger Lakes:

Google map of the Finger Lakes region in New York showing where the total eclipse will be happeningWhat we learned from Schneiderman's presentation

  • During the event, we can expect the temperatures around us to drop by around ten degrees
  • Animals and plants will act like it's nighttime
  • We will see planets and stars, as well as a Diamond Ring Effect and/or Baily's Beads
  • Even if it's cloudy, it will still get dark (it will appear even darker if clouds are present)
  • In the Finger Lakes area the eclipse will last 39-44 seconds
  • In the Rochester area the eclipse will last 3 minutes and 40 seconds
  • There are 4 million people in the eclipse's path
  • 375,000-500,000 visitors are expected due to the eclipse
  • People are expected to arrive 1-4 days before the eclipse, and many will leave within 2 hours of it ending
  • Many will try to leave in the first 15 minutes of it ending, hindering traffic
  • Traffic is expected to be backed up on the thruway as well as the back roads leading out of the area
  • Eclipse glasses are necessary to view it if you want to look directly at it- sunglasses are not safe and Amazon has had counterfeit issues with solar eclipse glasses

To view Daniel Schneiderman's entire slideshow, click here.