Local company donates more than 2,000 eclipse glasses to Edgewater party

CLEVELAND - This Monday afternoon just about everyone across the country will be looking up, trying to catch a rare glimpse of the much-hyped solar eclipse.

"It's science. It makes you think beyond Earth," said James Fletcher who is planning on viewing the eclipse. "It makes you think about the universe and what goes on."

Click here for the Northeast Ohio Guide to the Great American Eclipse

If you are trying to get your hands on certified safe eclipse glasses don't worry -  Cleveland manufacturer Astrozap donated more than 2,000 to The Cuyahoga Astronomical Association and Cleveland Metropark's Eclipse Watch party at Edgewater Park.

"He donated 25-hundred solar glasses for this event at Edgewater," said Jay Reynolds, with the Cuyahoga Astronomical Association and a research astronomer at Cleveland State University . "It's so cool, this way as many people as possible can participate but also share."

The founder of Astrozap is currently on the road preparing to take in the views of the total eclipse in Nashville, Tennessee, which is along the "Path of Totality" (the area from Oregon stretching to South Carolina where people will witness a total solar eclipse). Fox 8 spoke with the company's founder Joe Golias over the phone.

"We've prepared for this eclipse for four years by adding inventory and machines," said Golias. "We had 15,000 glasses selling by the minute."

Golias says they are sold out of the safe glasses. The company was approached by Reynolds to donate 500 glasses but quickly decided more would be necessary to make sure everyone could see.

"I'll be at work, but I do plan on catching a glimpse of it," said Lillian Torres at the park with her family. "I don't want to miss it."

If you are not tired of eclipse mania yet, mark your calendar seven years in the future. In 2024, Reynolds says Cleveland will be ground zero for the next U.S. total solar eclipse.

"It will be bigger Republican National Convention and Cavs parade multiplied by a factor of 10," said Reynolds. "It will be crazy here and all of Northeastern Ohio the entire viewing area is going to experience this."

Golias says he has already begun preparing for the next eclipse and plans to manufacture close to 50,000 glasses next time around. The free Edgewater Park watch party begins at 12:30 p.m. and continues until 4 p.m. Monday.

More stories on the solar eclipse here