Hurricane Irene from Space
The GOES-13 satellite saw Hurricane Irene entering the Bahamas on August 24, 2011 at 1302 UTC (9:02 a.m. EDT). Irene became a major hurricane shortly before this image and now has a clear, visible eye. NASA

Hurricane Irene 2011 is gaining momentum and heading for the East Coast. Vacationers have been advised to change plans. As can be expected, many are choosing hope for the best over expect the worst.

Cruise lines currently near the Bahamas have revised their itineraries and private islands in the region have largely been evacuated.

On Tuesday, The Bahamas Ministry of Tourism said that travelers should voluntarily evacuate.

It remains uncertain where the main of the Category 3 storm will hit and what will happen to the East Coast, officials said.

Ocracoke Island and all of Hyde County in North Carolina have been evacuated but many are choosing to wait. Director of the Outer Banks Visitors Bureau said that 80 percent of tourists have not evacuated.

Lowe's and Home Depot in Savannah, Ga. saw a rapid increase in sales of emergency supplies, reported Savannah Morning News. (Monday) we sold every generator we had and a lot of plywood, flashlights, batteries, things of that nature, Doug Coleman, general manager of the Home Depot on Victory Drive, told Savannah Morning News.

A lot of smart people were out getting it together, Lowe's store manager Ralph Steding told the paper.

Governor Andrew M. Cuomo told New York state's Office of Emergency Management to prepare hypervigilantly for Hurricane Irene, which may hit New York state Sunday.

We are actively working to ensure that New York State is prepared for the potential impact of Hurricane Irene, Cuomo said. The state government is coordinating with our federal and local partners so that we can effectively respond to any emergency situation that may arise due to the storm. I encourage New Yorkers to pay close attention to the track of the hurricane and, if necessary, to follow the instructions of emergency officials. By properly preparing in advance, we can most calmly and decisively take action if the storm arrives.

Long Island and New York City are most at risk, Eyewitness News reported. Flooding and power outages are likely.

Cuomo advised New Yorkers to stock up on emergency supplies, including canned goods, radios, batteries, pet supplies, and first aid kids.