Need Solar Eclipse Glasses? Try 7-Eleven
The convenience store chain is on the approved list of safe eclipse-watching eyewear retailers.
If you’re still on the hunt for the special glasses required for viewing the solar eclipse that will pass across the U.S. on August 21, try your local 7-Eleven. The convenience store is stocking American Astronomical Society (AAS)-approved solar eclipse viewing glasses right alongside the Cheetos, Hot Pockets, and Super Big Gulps.
The country has been in a bit of an eclipse-glasses crunch since Amazon realized they may have been selling counterfeit specs—or at least glasses that weren’t up to the task of staring directly into the sun. While the online retailer has offered refunds to anyone who purchased the suspect glasses, many people have been left without glasses as they are sold out in many places around the country, particularly in spots near the eclipse’s 70-mile-wide, 2,800-mile-long Path of Totality. Luckily, 7-Eleven is here to fill the void. They are one of a handful of U.S. retailers listed on the AAS website selling glasses with the "ISO 12312-1" seal, indicating they meet international safety standards for filters to view the sun directly.
If you’re not near a 7-Eleven, the AAS has a list of recommended eclipse glasses vendors, that includes Best Buy, Bi-Mart, Casey's General Store, Circle K, Kirklands, and Kroger. However, the best place to get eclipse glasses is at the local library. As the AAS's website notes, "With support from NASA, Google, and the Gordon and Betty Moore Foundation, the Space Science Institute's STAR_Net initiative has distributed more than 2 million ISO-compliant safe solar eclipse glasses to more than 6,900 libraries all across the US." However, since the glasses are free at the library, they may be gone—and 7-Eleven may be your best bet.
If the chance to snag a pair of "Explore Scientific Sun Catcher" solar eclipse glasses aren’t enough to lure you into a 7-Eleven, consider this: If you plan it right, you can pick up a pair of eclipse specs and celebrate the chain’s Bring Your Own Cup Day on August 18-19, where you can drink as much of a Slurpee as you can fit in your commemorative solar eclipse mug, or anything else you have lying around the house.