BUFFALO, N.Y. (WIVB) – Buffalo didn’t fall into the path of totality during Monday’s solar eclipse, but that didn’t stop crowds from coming out and enjoying the rare event.

The planetarium at Buffalo State College was packed with more than a thousand people for the event. Some of them showed up before 9 a.m.

Buff State was designated as an official eclipse viewing site by NASA. The maximum eclipse was just over 72 percent.

The eclipse was the first to cross the continental U.S. in nearly 100 years. The last eclipse to cross the U.S. coast to coast occurred in 1918.

The solar event started today in Washington and ended just before 3 p.m. in South Carolina. Dozens of cities across the country in the 70-mile wide “path of totality” were briefly plunged into darkness as the moon crossed in front of the sun. Temperatures in some areas dropped by as much as 12 degrees.

The next total solar eclipse to cross the U.S. will be April 8, 2024. Western New York will be in the path of totality.