First Coast High School students in South Carolina for eclipse

By Ashley Harding - Reporter

JACKSONVILLE, Fla. - A group of First Coast High School students is getting some of the best seats in the house when it comes to viewing the Great American Eclipse.

Around 30 physics and National Honors Society students are in South Carolina- one of the best places to view full totality. This is a trip they started planning late last year. Students and their teachers are excited, they've got their glasses ready, and they cannot wait to take in the experience.

"It's going to be going through Oregon to South Carolina in Charleston. We're going to go through Charleston to be able to see it," said Tori Williams, a First Coast High School senior. "It's great that the school has been so supportive. Our principal, Mr. Simmons, was just really excited for us to go because it's such a great opportunity."

At 1:16 p.m. Monday afternoon, while Duval County students are finishing out the school day, the Great American eclipse will officially start.

"This is a once in a lifetime opportunity. Something we'll be able to tell our kids and maybe even our grandkids about," said Anthony Mutino, another First Coast High School Junior.

Anthony and Tori are among the group of about 30 students.

The plan is to view the eclipse from Capers Island, that's about 15 miles north of Charleston between Dewees Island and the Cape Romain National Wildlife Refuge.

Their physics teacher, Richard Black, has the trip calculated down to a science- so to speak.

For Black, sharing the experience with his students was a no-brainer.

"It just seemed like a natural occurrence to ask and say, 'hey, are you interested?' Everybody's hand went up, so, here we go," said Black.

Once the group gets to Capers Island, the plan is to have a cookout on the beach. In the weeks and days leading up to the trip, the students have been doing preps and understanding the importance of protecting themselves with glasses.

For these students, this isn't just another school trip, this is a chance to make memories.

The students are driving back to Jacksonville tonight. So they're expected around 10:00. That makes for a quick turnaround tomorrow morning, but they're not worried.

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