Oh. My. Goodness! Did you see it? Totality?

It was incredible.

Beyond words.

Here at The Leadership Center, we have been planning various details of accommodating Eclipse guests and a wedding as well for 3+ years. Yes, you read that right: wedding and 3+ years!!

So where to start? I guess we could cue “Total Eclipse of the Heart.” Itahi Sanchez is where our Eclipse journey started. She called us to inquire about August 21, 2017 at least 3 years ago. After a tour, she knew this was the place she and Shawn were going to say “I do.” She is also the first one to explain to Micheala and me just what a total Solar Eclipse was and why it was so special!

Then enters Mad Scientist and Eclipse Evangelist, Dan Glomski, of the Edgerton Explorit Center. He showed up not much after Itahi so excited to share all things Solar Eclipse and to get us on board as a place for lodging, viewing and more.

Fast forward a couple years to the weeks leading up to the Total Solar Eclipse. Our team really showed just why we rock at our job! Micheala explored AirBNB to advertise our dorms and kept tabs on all the wedding festivities. Dario helped huge with logistics, parking as well as lodging. Jane made sure the reservations were check, double checked and then checked again, speaking to nearly every guest staying with us before arrival. Chef Bob (Sue) went to work planning food for the unknown number of guests we were going to have and I did invoices, answered questions, went to meetings and filled in where ever needed. I just have to say, MY TEAM ROCKS! The eclipse weekend, events, volunteers and details in its entirety helped us do better business, stretch us in how we serve our guests and reaffirm that we, indeed, are the

Hospitality Authority! Our crew worked together to make sure our 800+ guests and all the unexpected were accommodated, helped, treated kindly and overall, eclipsed with happiness to be here for this incredible spectacle.

Beyond our team, there were many, many others that helped make this successful weekend happen and I want to make sure they all are thanked.


  • Itahi & Shawn for choosing TLC asthe location for your special day!
  • All our amazing guests that came to us from all over the world. We loved sharing this great cosmic event with you!
  • The Aurora Eclipse Committee for all your hard work on organizing the logistics of the day throughout the entire community.
  • Blue Night Security- if you ever have event security needs, call these folks! They came through in such a huge way for us and we will forever be grateful to them and all the work they did.
  • Hampton Lutheran Schools- Thank you Jean Carnoali, Nadine Bankson, Terry Scherff, Jesse Pope and crew for volunteering. You all came with smiles, ready to serve and happy to serve all our guests.
  • Burton Enterprises- for making sure our trash was taken care of!
  • Joe Baldassare- former NVAF board member and avid TLC supporter. Thank you, Grandpa Joe. You make all things better.
  • Rick Braasch- NVAF board member. Thanks so much for eagerly jumping in where ever needed. You are amazing.
  • Aurora Cooperative- thank you for working with us on parking logistics and for sending the amazing Cindy Schoeder out to help at vehicle check in. Thank you Chris Holliday, Kevin Sagehorn and Tessa for all the behind the scenes logistics and communication.
  • Phil Hupf for handling the things at the fairgrounds and for coordinating the delivery and pick up of Culligan water for our site and the fairgrounds. Also thank you for getting us outside door knobs!
  • Clay Leeper and Culligan for donating water and water stations for our guests at The Leadership Center and the Hamilton County Fairgrounds to use.
  • Hamilton Telecommunications for setting up all the EXTRA INTERNET. Dan, Mark, Aaron, Jeff and crew: we know it wasn’t easy, but thank you for all your hard work and dedication for making it happen.
  • Aurora Screen Printing & Embroidery for personalizing our team eclipse shirts on very short notice!
  • Tricia Beem at the GI CVB for referring lodging to us.
  • Aurora Public Schools for the shuttle buses, drivers and volunteers.
  • Aurora Police, County Police and State Police for keeping our guests, properties and roads safe to navigate during the influx of traffic. Also thank you for working so hard on the logistics leading up to the Eclipse.
  • Aurora Ambulance for being onsite the day of to ensure our guests safety.
  • Darin and Sysco Foods of Lincoln for donating a portion of our bottled water.
  • Steve and Thompson Foods/US Foods for donating a portion of our water glasses to go with our Culligan stations.
  • The Edgerton Explorit Center: Mary, Dan, Jessica, Deb and crew. Thank you so much for the endless education, organization, and all the other things you did! Thank you for securing the 50,000 solar eclipse glasses for guests, students and staff. Thank you. Thank you. Thank you.
  • Mike & Salena Drucker for assisting with fencing, signage, and cake decorating. What a way to spend vacation!
  • Jayne Mann for donating the parking flags and posts.
  • The City of Aurora and Hamilton County for making all the rain damage go away so that all planned activities could happen!
  • The University of St. Kate’s and University of Minnesota (Twin Cities and Marshall) for launching weather balloons and letting us all watch, ask questions and such.
  • The AACD for the awesome T-shirts, helping hand out glasses and for showing off the town.
  • AND all the media: Thank you to the Aurora News Register, Pure Nebraska, News Channel Nebraska and NTV for covering before, during and after the eclipse!

I am sure there are many, many, many more I should thank and I am sorry for missing you. Please know we are grateful to all who helped make this happen!

One last huge thank you to give out: Micheala, Jane, Dario, Chef Bob, Sara, Lizzy, John H, Jim, Sue, Vonnie, Wyatt, Barb, and John B–THANK YOU so much for all you did on the day of, the days leading up to and for some of you, the years leading up to the Total Solar Eclipse. I can’t commit to words just how grateful I am for my Totality Loving Crew. Thank you for always going above and beyond to live our promise of putting the TLC in hospitality! Thank you.

With a heart eclipsed with gratitude,
Maile Ilac Boeder, IOM
Executive Director

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