Don’t Let an Eclipse Blind You to Scams

(Lake Havasu City, AZ – August 16, 2017) For the first time since June 1918 a total solar eclipse will be visible from coast to coast in the United States, travelling across the nation from Oregon to South Carolina on August 21, 2017. People will be able to observe via television, telescopes, or their own eyes; however, big events also mean big opportunities for scammers and unethical businesses. Better Business Bureau (BBB) reminds everyone the importance of planning carefully and trusting your instincts.

Be on the lookout for the following scams as you get ready for the eclipse:

Counterfeit Eclipse Glasses

Never look directly at the sun. To view the eclipse without damage to your eyes, use solar filter glasses. While sunglasses block about 50 percent of the sun’s rays, solar filter glasses block more than 99.99 percent. Unfortunately, many solar glasses available online may be fake or do not meet safety specifications. Your best bet is to stick with a brand certified by NASA or the American Astronomical Society (AAS) – for a list of reputable vendors visit eclipse.aas.org/resources/solar-filters.

Additional tips for safe viewing:

  • Regular sunglasses, even very dark sunglasses, are not enough.
  • Warn children of the danger of viewing the eclipse without protective eyewear.
  • Do not observe the eclipse through an unfiltered camera, telescope, binoculars, or other optical device.
  • Read more about viewing the solar eclipse safely at eclipse2017.nasa.gov/safety.

Accommodation Scams

If looking for a place to stay during the eclipse, be careful when booking online through a third-party site. Check with bbb.org to see what previous customers have to say about their experience. Don’t deal with anyone who asks for payment outside the website’s approved options, and ask for a confirmation number or email. Always double check that a listing is on the real website and emails are coming from official addresses. Using a credit card offers the best fraud protection.

There have been reports of travelers who booked hotels for the eclipse long in advance (before it was widely publicized) only to see their reservations canceled or moved to hotels far from viewing spots. Some of the original rooms are then offered again at a much higher rate. If you are travelling out of town for the eclipse and have a hotel booked, double-check your reservations before heading out.

Event Scams

Cities across the path of totality are offering free and/or VIP viewing parties. Scammers may set up fake events online or through social media and charge people for access to what should be a free event. NASA has information on many events at eclipse2017.nasa.gov/event-locations.

Bus Scams

Traffic will likely be very heavy on any road between a major city and the eclipse path. A bus might sound like great option, but be careful you don’t make a reservation only to end up without transportation. Make sure you deal directly with a bus or limo company to avoid scammers using a legitimate business as a front. Go to bbb.org to look for Accredited Businesses and read reviews and complaints before you book.

This month’s eclipse may be a rare chance to see an extraordinary astronomical event right in your backyard. That urgency and unique opportunity are what can make scams successful. Remember to do your research and if something seems too good to be true, it probably is.

If you are the victim of a scam related to the eclipse, go to BBB.org/scamtracker to file a scam report.

BBB.ORG

For more information or to schedule an interview with a BBB spokesperson, please contact Elaine Cullen at 928-302-3701 or ecullen@arizonabbb.org.

About Better Business Bureau Serving Central, Northern & Western Arizona

For more than 100 years, Better Business Bureau (BBB) has been helping people find businesses, brands and charities they can trust. In 2016, people turned to BBB more than 167 million times for BBB Business Profiles on more than 5.2 million businesses and Charity Reports on 11,000 charities – all available for free at bbb.org.  Incorporated locally in 1938, BBB Serving Central, Northern and Western Arizona covers 10 counties through its campuses in Phoenix, Lake Havasu City, Prescott and Yuma supported by over 11,600 BBB Accredited Businesses. Businesses that earn BBB Accreditation contractually agree and adhere to high standards of ethical business practices. BBB provides objective advice, free business and charity profiles, and educational information on topics affecting marketplace trust.
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Better Business Bureau, 4428 N. 12th Street, Phoenix, AZ 85014 United States

New Program Aimed At Helping Arizona Startups

New Program Aimed at Helping Arizona Startups to be Led by Kimberly Roland at Better Business Bureau

(Lake Havasu City, AZ – August 10, 2017) Better Business Bureau (BBB) has a century-long reputation of building trust in the marketplace and now is looking to help build better businesses from the ground up through entrepreneur programs. To lead its new effort, BBB Serving Central, Northern and Western Arizona welcomes Kimberly Roland as Director of Entrepreneur Programs. Roland joins the organization as the Director of Entrepreneur Programs.

The new director will drive innovation at BBB and the greater community through the creation of entrepreneurial programming and spaces where both accredited businesses and startups can cowork, collaborate.

“Small businesses are the backbone of the Arizona and American economies, so creating a space where they can incubate, learn, collaborate, and work will certainly advance our mission,” said BBB President/CEO Matthew Fehling. “Entrepreneurial programming focused on ethics is an innovative addition to the long list of services we already provide accredited businesses and community members.”

Prior to joining BBB in July 2017, Roland served as the Manager of Partner Relations in Entrepreneurship + Innovation at Arizona State University where she managed programs and external partnerships in the greater business and startup community. She has also worked for St. Mary’s Food Bank Alliance and Feeding America and has extensive experience in nonprofit programming and innovation.

Background areas include: program development, research, human centered design, social media management, evaluation, grant writing, event management, cultivating strategic partnerships, program and process innovation, and evaluation.

“I am excited to use my experience and background in innovation and program development to help BBB serve Arizona’s startup community,” said Roland. “There are so many valuable resources offered by local organizations that collaboration will be key to our success. My hope is that the new program’s collaborative effort will truly impact and help entrepreneurs.”

Roland is a Phoenix native. She is incredibly passionate about food, traveling, and issues of social justice.

To learn more about BBB Serving Central, Northern and Western Arizona and its efforts to help small businesses, visit www.arizonabbb.org

BBB.ORG

For more information or to schedule http://BBB.ORGan interview with a BBB spokesperson, please contact Elaine Cullen at 928-302-3701 or ecullen@arizonabbb.org.


About Better Business Bureau Serving Central, Northern & Western Arizona

For more than 100 years, Better Business Bureau (BBB) has been helping people find businesses, brands and charities they can trust. In 2016, people turned to BBB more than 167 million times for BBB Business Profiles on more than 5.2 million businesses and Charity Reports on 11,000 charities – all available for free at bbb.org. Incorporated locally in 1938, BBB Serving Central, Northern and Western Arizona covers 10 counties through its campuses in Phoenix, Lake Havasu City, Prescott and Yuma supported by over 11,600 BBB Accredited Businesses. Businesses that earn BBB Accreditation contractually agree and adhere to high standards of ethical business practices. BBB provides objective advice, free business and charity profiles, and educational information on topics affecting marketplace trust.

Havasu Area Public Art Proudly Presents The Second Annual Bar Stool Auction

  • Calling all Barstool painters to reinvent an old barstool into a piece of furniture with a story and/or personality.

  • The Barstool Auction is Sept. 16 At the Flying X starts at 5-7. Barstools entries can be dropped off at that location between 10-12.

  • It is promoted by and benefits HAPA, Havasu Area Public Art. To fund projects like the one on Main Street with the cars.

  • Last Years auction helped pay for the artist to paint it. We are a group of people/artists who are very committed to ‘ ARTing up’ Havasu.

  • We had over 30 entries for the live and silent auction. It was a blast for all who participated or bid on a barstool.

  • Art pieces to include both murals and sculpture pieces.

Havasu Area Public Art proudly presents the Second Annual Bar Stool Auction. Dozens of original, one of a kind, bar stools created by local artists will be available at auction or raffle. Proceeds benefit future public art projects for Lake Havasu City. Event is hosted by the Flying X Saloon. Viewing begins at 5 pm, the auction starts at 6 pm, followed by the raffle. Admission is FREE. For information about the event or creating a bar stool call Pam 928.412.7726.

Founded by Dick and Betty

BBB’s Ethical Athlete Scholarships

Being a great athlete isn’t just about running the fastest or jumping the highest. It’s also about doing the right thing. That’s why Better Business Bureau (BBB) has partnered with Arizona Interscholastic Association (AIA) to recognize Arizona high school athletes whose ethics standout to coaches, teammates, and fans. Do you know an athlete that does the right thing on and off the field? Nominate them today we’re at BBB ethical athlete’s scholarship, click here to see more details.

The Better Business Bureau has partnered with Isagenix to recognize high school athletes doing the right thing on and off the court. Two athletes are chosen each month during the school year. Each month a $1,000 scholarship is issued to one male and one female. Then, all the winners during the school year are eligible for the “Ethical Champion” at the end of the school year and two of our winners (again, one male, one female) will receive an additional $2,500 scholarship.

Do you know the next the winner? We’ve already had three winners in Mohave County – two from Mohave High School and one from Lake Havasu High School and hopefully more to come!