It's time to safeguard our jobs — and our national security. TAKE ACTION

Manufacture This

The blog of the Alliance for American Manufacturing

You can support American workers & companies during the historic event.

Save the date: Aug. 21, 2017! 

That’s the day that a total solar eclipse will be visible from coast to coast, and it’s being called the “Great American Eclipse.”

The once-in-a-lifetime event will see the sun go completely behind the moon, and the moon will cast a twilight here on earth. The moon and sun will appear to be the same size, even though the sun is much larger. 

The eclipse will be visible from the waterfront of Government Point, Ore., through Charleston, S.C. The eclipse will start at 10:16 a.m. in Oregon, and end in South Carolina at 2:41 p.m., and the total duration will be about an hour and a half. 

The Great American Eclipse will pass through 12 states: Oregon, Idaho, Wyoming, Nebraska, Kansas, Missouri, Illinois, Kentucky, Tennessee, Georgia, North Carolina, and South Carolina. If you live in one of those places, you won’t want to miss it! But even if you don't live in one of those places, you'll still be able to watch a partial eclipse — NASA has an interactive map that shows exactly what you can expect to see and when.

And as USA Today reports, you also need to take steps to protect yourself — special eclipse glasses must be worn to protect your eyes from the damaging rays of the sun, for example. We put together a list of American-made items you’ll need for the eclipse.

Solar Eclipse Glasses: The one thing you definitely need if you plan on watching the eclipse are special glasses to protect your eyes, and American Paper Optics’ Eclipse Glasses are made in Barlett, Tenn. These glasses block out 100 percent of ultraviolet rays, 100 percent of infrared radiation, and 99.9 percent of visible light that can hurt your eyes. Made from black polymer material, American Paper Optics’ eclipse glasses allow you to see the natural phenomena without so much light, and are also tested and certified safe to use during the eclipse. The glasses are also easy to use — the company printed the instructions about how to wear them and reminders to keep them on during the duration of the eclipse right on the frames. The glasses can even be customized with a message or logo in order to make great promotional items.

Picnic Blanket: Manufactured in San Francisco, Eclogue’s Go-Blanket is a way to watch the solar eclipse in style. Not only can the blanket be used to watch the eclipse, the Go-Blanket is perfect as a picnic blanket and a stadium blanket. With breathable lining, high-quality light fleece, and a 100 percent waterproof coat, the blanket is lightweight, with durable nylon lining that is still soft and cozy.    

Sunglasses: While eclipse glasses are a must, if you’re going to be outside for the eclipse, you might as well pick up new shades for the rest of the day! Shwood makes wooden sunglasses that are stylish, trendy, eco-friendly and functional.  Made in Portland, Ore., Shwood’s manufacturing process puts skilled craftsmanship and technology together to form their one-of-a-kind sunglasses.  Every step from design, to lens cutting, to shaping and finishing the glasses are done right in the company’s Portland workshop. 

Sunscreen: If you plan on being outside while waiting for the eclipse to start, make sure to apply sunscreen. Coola Sun Care makes its sunscreen in San Diego, Calif., and manufactures all types of sun care from classic sunscreen to self-tanning products to protective lip balm and more.  Coola uses ingredients that are natural, organic, locally sourced, and sustainable. Coola believes that its products are “better for your skin, and better for the environment.”  

Lawn Chairs: Get comfortable as you wait for the big moment! Back in the USA sells a good old fashioned folding aluminum webbed lawn chair. From backyard BBQs to parades, these chairs are perfect for any outdoor event… like the eclipse!  With a selection of different colors, different options for higher backs, and drink holders, Back in the USA displays the great ways you can buy a backyard classic lawn chair.

Picnic Basket:  Do you want to make a nice day out of the solar eclipse? Bring some snacks and drinks, and pack them in an American-made picnic basket!  Peterboro Basket Company is the oldest continuous manufacturer of baskets in the United States, having been in business since 1854. Based in historic Peterborough, N.H., Peterboro Basket Company strives to bring its customers the highest quality and most useful baskets with long-lasting durability. Not only does the company make classic wooden woven baskets, it also makes insulated coolers that look like classic baskets as well.