Gov. Janet Mills welcomes visitors to Maine to enjoy next week’s total solar eclipse, but she offered several safety tips Monday ahead of the event that’s expected to draw thousands to rural parts of the state.

Flanked by cabinet members from transportation, the warden service, and emergency management, Mills urged eclipse goers to exercise common sense April 8.

“Make sure you have a full tank of gas, paper maps because you might be out of range for GPS and Internet, and plenty of snacks and water,” Mills said during a press event at the University of Maine.

A large swath of Maine is in the path of totality for the eclipse, which will cross several states on its way north and east. Houlton, a town of 6,000 on the Canadian border, is the last place in the continental U.S. to see the eclipse.

That town and others have spent years planning for what could be an influx of thousands. Estimates range from 10,000 to 40,000 traveling to the state to see the rare total eclipse.

Hotels, motels, private home rentals and other places are booked solid and towns are planning events to try to draw people to their towns well before the main event.

The eclipse will begin about 2 p.m. Monday and last about two-and-a-half hours. The total eclipse will be at 3:20 and last three minutes.

Mills urged drivers to stay on paved roads, noting that it’s mud season in Maine and shoulders and other areas are likely to be soft.

“Of course, no matter where you go, you should always pack warm clothes,” she said. “It is April in Maine. The weather is unpredictable.”

During the eclipse, temperatures could drop as much as 10 degrees, she said.

And as she held up a pair of eclipse glasses, she urged Mainers to make sure they wear the proper eye protection.

Mills said the Maine Emergency Management Agency will set up its operations center on the Sunday before the eclipse. In response to questions from reporters, MEMA Director Pete Rogers said his agency has worked with cellphone carriers to boost service.

“I think there will be plenty of bandwidth for everybody, based on what we are hearing,” Rogers said. “We have addressed this. We’ve planned for it.”

For her part, Mills said she will be somewhere in the path of totality with friends.

“If you plan properly, you’re setting yourself up to have a great time and to enjoy this once in a generation event safely,” she said. “We want you here, we want you to enjoy the eclipse and to do so safely.”