by Matt Alderton | March 05, 2017
Although you've got a busy calendar of meetings this year, take a break for the Great American Eclipse on Aug. 21, 2017. It will be the first total solar eclipse viewable from the continental United States in nearly 40 years. Make sure you see it by planning a trip today to one of the following 10 viewing spots, ranked the best by USA Today:

10. John Day Fossil Beds National Monument
John Day Fossil Beds National Monument in Oregon will experience up to 2 minutes of total darkness during the eclipse.

9. Craters of the Moon National Monument and Preserve
This national park in Idaho was named after the moon; that makes it an especially apt place to watch the eclipse.

8. Grand Teton National Park
Wyoming's Grand Teton is in the middle of the eclipse path and will go dark for up to 2 minutes and 20 seconds.

7. Homestead National Monument of America
The eclipse will take place on a Monday, but this Nebraska park will be celebrating all weekend long with special events, including a photography workshop and stargazing.

6. St. Joseph, MO
Located near Kansas City, St. Joseph is situated near the center of the eclipse's path and will have five viewing areas on offer.

5. Carbondale, IL
Carbondale is calling itself the "Eclipse Crossroads of America," as it's smack dab in the middle of the eclipse path.

4. Hopkinsville, KY
Not only will Hopkinsville be dark for a full 2 minutes and 41 seconds, but it will be hosting its fifth annual Little Green Men Festival -- inspired by a UFO incident from the 1950s -- at the same time.

3. Nashville, TN
Nashville is the biggest city in the path of the eclipse.

2. Great Smoky Mountains National Park
Great Smoky's western section in Tennessee and North Carolina will boast three organized viewing areas and up to 2 minutes and 20 seconds of darkness.

1. Charleston, SC
Charleston is turning the eclipse into a grand celebration. Planned events include a rooftop viewing party with an astronomy professor and a blues-and-barbecue harbor cruise.

Source: USA Today