Solar Eclipse 2024 Activities for Families

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On April eighth, 2024, the United States will witness a complete photo voltaic eclipse. While a complete photo voltaic eclipse happens someplace on Earth each 18 months or so, these superb occasions are inclined to recur in anyone place solely about as soon as each 375 years or so. This makes the upcoming eclipse a once-in-a-lifetime alternative for a lot of, and it’s a possibility you’re positively going to wish to benefit from!

For this eclipse, the trail of totality consists of 13 states: Texas, Oklahoma, Arkansas, Missouri, Illinois, Kentucky, Indiana, Ohio, Pennsylvania, New York, Vermont, New Hampshire, and Maine. That mentioned, the phenomenon is not going to be seen in all components of every of those states. Therefore, even should you stay in one of many states talked about, you will have to journey with the intention to be within the path of totality. 

Even should you do should journey, do it. You see, not solely is a complete photo voltaic eclipse one thing you don’t see day by day, it’s additionally a superb academic alternative, in addition to the proper excuse to unplug and make some recollections as a household. 

What is a Solar Eclipse?

Before we go additional, let’s take a second to debate what precisely eclipses are. In easy phrases, an eclipse occurs when one heavenly physique (a moon or planet, as an illustration) strikes into the shadow of one other heavenly physique. 

On Earth, this may happen within the type of a lunar eclipse (when the Earth strikes between the moon and the solar, blocking the daylight that usually illuminates the moon) or within the type of a photo voltaic eclipse, which is what we are going to all be anticipating this coming April. Solar eclipses occur when the moon strikes between the solar and the Earth, which blocks daylight from reaching Earth and causes the moon to solid a shadow on the Earth. 

There are three essential sorts of photo voltaic eclipses:

  • Total photo voltaic eclipse
  • Partial photo voltaic eclipse
  • Annular photo voltaic eclipse

A complete photo voltaic eclipse is what we are going to witness on April eighth. It’s solely seen from a small space on Earth, and people who can see it are within the very middle of the moon’s shadow when it hits the Earth. When a complete eclipse occurs, the sky turns into very darkish for a time frame. This solely occurs when the solar, moon, and Earth are completely aligned, which is why it’s such a uncommon prevalence. 

Meanwhile, a partial photo voltaic eclipse occurs when the solar, moon, and Earth should not completely lined up. During a partial photo voltaic eclipse, the solar appears to have a darkish shadow on part of its floor.

Finally, an annular photo voltaic eclipse will be seen when the moon is farthest from Earth. During an annular eclipse, the moon strikes in entrance of the solar, however as a result of it’s farther from the Earth, it doesn’t cowl the solar utterly. This appears from Earth like a halo across the moon. 

Solar eclipse through viewing glasses

Preparing for the Solar Eclipse

Clearly, 2024’s complete photo voltaic eclipse just isn’t one thing you wish to miss. Therefore, you’ll wish to ensure you correctly put together for the occasion so that you’re in the appropriate place on the proper time, and with the appropriate security tools.

Where and When to See the Eclipse

We talked about the states that may witness totality above. However, we additionally talked about that you simply received’t be capable of view the overall eclipse from simply wherever in every of those states. Check out this map to determine the place precisely try to be for the very best view of this superb occasion.

Keep in thoughts, the overall eclipse will happen at totally different occasions somewhere else because it strikes throughout the nation. For occasion, Dallas will witness totality for 3 minutes and 51 seconds starting at 1:40 PM native time (Central). Meanwhile, Buffalo, NY will see the overall eclipse for about 4 minutes and 45 seconds starting at about 3:15 PM native time (Eastern).

Make certain you utilize the map linked above to seek out out what time the overall eclipse will happen the place you’re. 

Safety Equipment for Viewing the Eclipse

Whether it’s important to journey or are fortunate sufficient to see the eclipse from your personal yard, you’ll need to take security precautions. Fortunately, that is simple sufficient to do.

All it’s good to view the eclipse safely is a set of eclipse glasses or handheld photo voltaic viewers. While you possibly can view the overall eclipse for the two–4 minutes that the solar is totally coated with out eclipse glasses, the glasses permit you to safely view the photo voltaic eclipse in any respect phases. (They may also be used for annular and partial photo voltaic eclipses.)

Never look immediately on the solar with out eclipse glasses. Even very darkish sun shades received’t do the job correctly. 

True eclipse glasses or viewers could have:

  • An ISO 12312-2:2015 certification
  • The producer’s identify and tackle printed someplace on the product

By buying from a respected retailer, you possibly can assist make sure you get a top quality product. If your glasses don’t embody these items, ditch them and discover new ones earlier than the eclipse date arrives. 

Renting an RV for the 2024 Solar Eclipse

If it’s important to journey to get to the trail of totality, you aren’t alone. There are going to be 1000’s upon 1000’s of individuals touring for this occasion. The greatest technique to do it? By RV after all!

Taking an RV to see the overall photo voltaic eclipse will permit you to park wherever in consolation, eradicating the necessity to lease an costly lodge room and opening up your choices when the pickings could also be slim as a result of excessive quantity of vacationers. On prime of that, you’ll be capable of expertise different superb facets of nature whereas witnessing this lovely present that the heavens will likely be placing on for us. 

Don’t personal an RV? You can at all times lease one. No RVs accessible the place you’re going? No worries! While all of the RVs within the path of totality will doubtless be snatched up rapidly, you possibly can at all times lease close to your private home and drive the RV to your vacation spot. 

Solar Eclipse Family Activities in Texas

We’ll begin with the primary state that sees the eclipse: Texas. An huge chunk of Texas is within the path of totality, together with a number of main cities, numerous state parks, and loads of smaller cities. Use the data beneath to select the proper Texas viewing vacation spot!

Key Cities and Towns within the Path of Totality

As talked about above, the eclipse will be seen from an enormous variety of cities in Texas. Three of the most important cities that may get a view of the occasion are listed beneath:

  • San Antonio at 1:34 PM native time
  • Austin at 1:36 PM native time
  • Dallas at 1:40 PM native time

We discovered dozens of superior eclipse-related occasions occurring in Texas. Choose from this listing or do a little bit of digging to see what different choices you possibly can give you:

More Awesome Viewing Locations

Want a cool viewing location however don’t essentially wish to attend an occasion? Try one among these spots on for measurement:

Solar Eclipse Family Activities in Oklahoma

Only a really small sliver of Oklahoma sees the overall eclipse. That mentioned, as a result of the a part of the state that may witness the occasion is so rural, it’d simply be a superb decide for avoiding the heaviest crowds.

Key Cities and Towns within the Path of Totality

There aren’t a complete lot of Oklahoma cities that get to see the eclipse. The essential city within the path of totality is listed beneath:

  • Broken Bow at 1:45 PM native time

We additionally didn’t discover many organized eclipse occasions occurring in Oklahoma. What we did discover is a reasonably cool tenting occasion that we predict you’ll love:

Awesome Viewing Locations

Other cool viewing areas are plentiful on this rural a part of Oklahoma. We particularly love the concept of heading to the gorgeous state park beneath:

Photo of a solar eclipse

Solar Eclipse Family Activities in Arkansas

Arkansas is subsequent on the trail, and it’s one other wonderful place to look at the eclipse occur. This state options loads of nice cities within the path of totality, in addition to some tremendous enjoyable occasions. 

Key Cities and Towns within the Path of Totality

Some of the important thing cities alongside the route of the eclipse are listed beneath. Pick one among these or select any of the smaller cities in between:

  • Texarkana at 1:47 PM native time
  • Hot Springs at 1:49 PM native time
  • Little Rock at 1:51 PM native time
  • Jonesboro at 1:55 PM native time
  • Paragould at 1:56 PM native time

Below are only a handful of the superb occasions Arkansas has deliberate to have a good time the photo voltaic eclipse. We particularly love the concept of the Dig the Solar Eclipse Experience, however all of those will likely be superior!

More Awesome Viewing Locations

Arkansas is residence to one among solely two nationwide parks within the path of the eclipse. This may very well be an important viewing location, as might the numerous state parks that may see totality. 

Solar Eclipse Family Activities in Missouri

Missouri will get a superb style of the overall eclipse as effectively. If you’re heading to this state to view the occasion, we advocate choosing one of many enjoyable festivals listed beneath or heading to the gorgeous Ozark National Scenic Riverway. 

Key Cities and Towns within the Path of Totality

Some of the important thing cities that may expertise the overall eclipse are listed beneath. These are all good locations for viewing the phenomenon:

  • Doniphon at 1:55 PM native time
  • Poplar Bluff at 1:58 PM native time
  • Perryville at 1:58 PM native time
  • Cape Girardeau 2:00 PM native time

Check out all of the superb festivals and occasions that will likely be held in Missouri surrounding the eclipse. If you possibly can’t discover one thing right here that fits your fancy, we’re unsure you’ll ever discover the appropriate occasion:

More Awesome Viewing Locations

Here are some extra peaceable, scenic viewing areas that may be a greater decide should you choose a laid-back expertise or don’t like huge crowds (although some crowds are inevitable regardless of the place you go):

Solar Eclipse Family Activities in Illinois

Wondering about Illinois? Well, solely a small portion of this state will get to see the overall eclipse, nevertheless it might nonetheless be a superb place to go, particularly should you stay in Illinois and wish to keep near residence. 

Key Cities and Towns within the Path of Totality

The two cities listed beneath will each get a superb view of the eclipse. Pick one among these or any small city very close by and try to be good to go:

  • Chester at 1:58 PM native time
  • Mt. Vernon at 2:00 PM native time

The solely formally scheduled eclipse occasion we will discover in Illinois is the Southern Illinois Crossroads Eclipse Festival, which runs from April fifth–eighth at Southern Illinois University in Carbondale. This occasion will embody stay music, science shows, telescope viewing alternatives, and naturally, a gaggle viewing of the eclipse. 

In addition to this huge occasion, there are doubtless a variety of smaller, unannounced occasions within the works, so should you head to southern Illinois for the eclipse, be able to get together laborious!

More Awesome Viewing Locations

There are a few different nice viewing areas in Illinois. These will each see some crowds, however as a result of they provide such good views, combating these crowds could also be worthwhile:

Solar Eclipse Family Activities in Kentucky

Another state that simply barely will get to see the eclipse, Kentucky presents a number of good viewing spots however doesn’t have occasions deliberate as of but. Still, it may very well be a superb place to go if it’s close to the place you reside. 

Key Cities and Towns within the Path of Totality

These two cities are within the path of totality and can doubtless be the very best decide if you wish to go to someplace with facilities:

  • Kentucky Bend at 1:59 PM native time
  • Paducah at 2:00 PM native time

We couldn’t discover any scheduled eclipse festivals or occasions in Kentucky. That mentioned, the city of Paducah has posted that they’re gearing up and have quite a lot of thrilling plans within the works. Therefore, you possibly can rely on festivities should you go to this city to view the eclipse. 

More Awesome Viewing Locations

Other great Kentucky viewing areas embody some state parks in addition to a wonderful wildlife administration space, all of which provide you with some fairly views to go together with the present within the sky:

Solar Eclipse Family Activities in Indiana

Indiana is a wonderful decide with regards to locations to take a look at the overall photo voltaic eclipse. This is as a result of there are a number of locations within the state that see the eclipse, together with a number of greater cities. 

Key Cities and Towns within the Path of Totality

Some of the bigger cities that see totality are listed beneath. If you wish to keep someplace with buying, eating, and sights, we advocate selecting a vacation spot from this listing. 

  • Evansville at 2:02 PM native time
  • Terre Haute at 3:04 PM native time
  • Bloomington at 3:04 PM native time
  • Indianapolis at 3:06 PM native time

Lots of cool occasions imply that viewing the eclipse in Indiana is bound to be something however boring. We extremely advocate the Conner Prairie Eclipse occasion to historical past buffs. Meanwhile, those that like music festivals may like Shadowfest. 

More Awesome Viewing Locations

Check out the nationwide forest or one among Indiana’s state parks for a scenic viewing expertise:

Solar Eclipse Family Activities in Ohio

Like Indiana, Arkansas, and Texas, Ohio options a number of massive cities that see totality. It can be residence to the second nationwide park within the path of totality. Because of these items, we’d even go as far as to say Ohio is the very best place to view the eclipse!

Key Cities and Towns within the Path of Totality

Some of the Ohio cities within the path of totality embody the next:

  • Dayton at 3:09 PM native time
  • Sandusky at 3:12 PM native time
  • Toledo at 3:13 PM native time
  • Ashtabula at 3:15 PM native time
  • Cleveland at 3:15 PM native time

There are an unlimited variety of eclipse occasions and actions occurring in Ohio. We’ve listed a few of our favorites beneath, however yow will discover much more choices on this nifty web site.

More Awesome Viewing Locations

Prefer the peace of nature over the thrill of an occasion? Head to one among Ohio’s state parks or the aforementioned nationwide park and you may benefit from the eclipse whereas surrounded by nature:

Solar Eclipse Family Activities in Pennsylvania

Just a little piece of Pennsylvania has managed to get in on the eclipse motion as effectively! No, you received’t discover a complete listing of thrilling cities to select from, however the few that may see totality are good locations to go to. 

Key Cities and Towns within the Path of Totality

The two cities beneath will see totality. We particularly love the city of Erie and extremely advocate it for a extra laid-back viewing expertise:

  • Erie at 3:16 PM native time
  • Warren at 3:18 PM native time

So far, we aren’t discovering any eclipse festivities or occasions listed in Pennsylvania. That mentioned, Erie has named the day The Ultimate Sunblock and we think about they are going to announce enjoyable occasions which might be occurring earlier than and after the precise eclipse because the date attracts nearer. Watch the positioning linked above for more information. 

More Awesome Viewing Locations

Want to take a look at the eclipse in a wonderful place? Any one of many parks beneath will serve this objective simply tremendous!

Solar Eclipse Family Activities in New York

Some of probably the most lovely locations in New York are on the trail of totality. Whether you select to view the occasion over Niagara Falls or beside a wonderful lake, you’re certain to seek out an incredible viewing location on this state. 

Key Cities and Towns within the Path of Totality

Some of the cities that the eclipse will move via because it makes its method via New York embody the 5 listed beneath:

  • Niagara Falls at 3:18 PM native time
  • Buffalo at 3:18 PM native time
  • Rochester at 3:20 PM native time
  • Watertown at 3:22 PM native time
  • Syracuse at 3:23 PM native time

New York may also play host to some fairly superior viewing occasions. Check out one of many choices beneath for an additional thrilling journey to see this unbelievable efficiency within the sky:

More Awesome Viewing Locations

New York’s state parks are unbelievable. Therefore, we will solely think about that viewing the eclipse in one among these lovely parks could be gorgeous:

Group of people watching solar eclipse

Solar Eclipse Family Activities in Vermont

A little bit of Vermont will get to see the eclipse, and this can be a great spot to look at the occasion if you wish to mix your viewing journey with a ski journey. Honestly although, even should you don’t wish to ski, we will advocate heading to the components of Vermont that the eclipse passes via. 

Key Cities and Towns within the Path of Totality

The two cities beneath will each see totality. Both are pretty and effectively price visiting, so both would make an important vacation spot:

  • Burlington at 3:26 PM native time
  • Montpelier at 3:27 PM native time

Hoping to attend an occasion whereas in Vermont for the eclipse? There are a number of to select from. We advocate the Fairbanks Museum & Planetarium Event for an academic choice, and The Whiteout for music-lovers:

More Awesome Viewing Locations

More cool viewing areas embody the parks and resorts listed beneath:

Solar Eclipse Family Activities in New Hampshire

Hoping to go to New Hampshire? Good selection! This state is enjoying host to some nice occasions. Besides, we simply assume New Hampshire is a beautiful place to go to. 

Key Cities and Towns within the Path of Totality

Key New Hampshire cities within the path of totality embody the next:

  • Dixville Notch at 3:28 PM native time
  • Colebrook at 3:29 PM native time

The two occasions beneath each current wonderful alternatives to study one thing new whereas viewing this unbelievable, once-in-a-lifetime occasion:

More Awesome Viewing Locations

Those searching for a wonderful viewing location in a pure space will admire the choices we’ve listed beneath:

Solar Eclipse Family Activities in Maine

Finally, there’s Maine. The path of totality runs via the center of Maine, and actually, there aren’t a complete lot of cities there. This is nice and unhealthy. No, you received’t discover the facilities present in cities, however you can see some severely gorgeous viewing areas that present an exquisite backdrop.

Key Cities and Towns within the Path of Totality

There is just one city price mentioning within the path of totality in Maine:

  • Caribou at 3:32 PM native time

We don’t see any formally scheduled eclipse occasions in Maine but. That mentioned, it appears just like the University of Maine may need one thing within the works. Additionally, we’re betting a lot of smaller festivals and actions crop up by April, which means there will likely be loads of enjoyable methods to take pleasure in this unbelievable occasion. 

More Awesome Viewing Locations

More superior viewing areas will be discovered inside the many Maine state parks and on the Aroostook National Wildlife Refuge. These locations will present lovely views and enjoyable recreation alternatives:

The 2024 complete photo voltaic eclipse is undoubtedly a must-see occasion. Not solely will it’s extremely thrilling and enjoyable to see such an incredible phenomenon, it’s additionally an effective way to study one thing new and make unforgettable household recollections whereas doing so.

So what are you ready for? Order some eclipse viewing glasses (keep in mind to not watch the eclipse with out them, as a result of it’s harmful), decide one of many superior viewing areas listed above, and prepare to hit the street for the journey of a lifetime!

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