Attending large events can be fun and exciting but you must ensure that you are taking safety precautions. The eclipse will draw thousands of people to Southern Illinois and just like any event of this magnitude, many areas can become crowded. Below is a list of things to keep in mind to ensure you and your family's safety.

• Do not bring your personal valuables.

• Be aware of your surroundings. Know where you’re going and who’s around you.

• Bring allergy and any required medication with a first aid kit. Being in a new environment can often trigger the unknown.

• Sunscreen and bug spray are your friends. Be sure to reapply as needed and/or required.

• Stay hydrated but don’t leave your drink unattended. Even soft drinks can be spiked.

• Be conscious of your clothing to avoid heat exhaustion. Layers can help cool you when needed.

• Bring a portable charger to ensure your mobile phone is charged on a daily basis.

• Follow well-lit paths at night. Do not venture into darker, quieter areas. You can explore in the daylight.

• Organize a meeting point with your friends and family of where you will be three times a day (e.g. 2 p.m., 6 p.m., and 1 a.m.) in case you get split up.

• Bring only the cash and cards you need. Make a note of your bank’s emergency number to call if your cards are stolen. Note, not all nationally recognized banks are located in Southern Illinois.

• Report any incident — even near misses — as soon as possible. You may save someone else.