SIU offers indoor camping to view eclipse

CARBONDALE, IL (KFVS) - With all the excitement surrounding the upcoming eclipse in August, it may be difficult to choose how best to watch this special event.

Southern Illinois University is offering indoor camping inside the Student Recreation Center starting Friday, August 18 and running through Monday, August 21, the day of the eclipse. Campers would be allowed to stay at the indoor campsite possibly until Wednesday following the event.

The point of greatest duration to view the eclipse will be just a few miles south of Carbondale and Troy Vaughn, Director of Recreational Sports and Services at SIU, says opening the center up to campers will provide extra accommodations for viewers.

"We were made aware that many people who were trying to have accommodations during the eclipse were finding rates so high in local areas or places were booked," Vaughn says. "We have the space and would love to welcome folks to campus who need a more economic and safe place to stay."

While campers must provide their own amenities like tents and sleeping bags, they will have access to showers cell phone charging stations and the center's recreational options.

Vaughn says the center will provide an safe and clean environment for campers that is just a 10 minute walk from Saluki Stadium where much of the other eclipse programming is going on.

“You could consider us one of the world’s largest hotels during the week or so the eclipse is here in Southern Illinois,” Vaughn says. “With so many things happening on campus that weekend and on Monday, you are right in the center of it all by staying in the Student Recreation Center.

To book a spot at the center, hopeful campers can make contact with the Student Recreation Center at 618 453-1277. More information about cost for individual campers or those coming in groups can be found here.

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