Just two days before the eclipse passes over Columbia, eager viewers are still looking for glasses that will allow them to safely watch the big event.
Many in the crowd at Main Street’s Soda City Market on Saturday were still hoping to land a pair, or needed to replace a pair of glasses they feared doesn’t meet the required standards.
Meagan and Aaron Vannucci of Columbia said they received their glasses from a local restaurant a week ago, but have since learned the glasses may be unreliable.
“There was a post on their Facebook page that said ‘Oops, it was a mistake,’” Aaron Vannucci said. “So now we’re scrambling.”
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Jeremy Becraft, general manager of Mast General Store on Main Street, said the crowd at Soda City Market was normal for a busy Saturday, but they expected business to be heavier later in the day.
Becraft said the store sold out of its stock of 3,100 eclipse glasses on Thursday, but are still getting about a thousand calls a day from people looking for glasses.
“And we’re selling eclipse t-shirts like crazy,” he said.
Mast is selling glasses for $1.99 a pair, but Becraft has heard of some selling for as much as $15 a pair.
“A lot of people thought plenty of glasses would be passed out for free, and now they’re scrambling,” Becraft said. “It’s kind of like the day before Christmas.”
His store is selling the glasses for $1.99 because, “We just wanted people to enjoy the experience.”