The eclipse is nearing: April 8 a huge day for events in the Miami Valley

There is less than a week until the rare total solar eclipse plunges much of the Miami Valley into darkness. It happens the afternoon of April 8.

Local businesses have been promoting events planned around this spectacular experience: Campgrounds are renting out spaces, churches are offering up parking lots, bars have eclipse-themed drinks, parks and communities are going to have live music and other activities ... it’s a big day here.

The Dayton Daily News has had an ongoing list of things people can do to celebrate. Here are some the GO! staff wants to highlight:

Wright Dunbar Watch Party: Festivities will kick off at 16 S. Williams St. from 1-4:30 p.m. Activities include NASA livestream in the theater, presentations from NASA SCoPE subject matter experts, an Eclipse Junior Ranger activity, solar eclipse painting, live viewing of total solar eclipse with Unistellar smart telescopes hosted by SETI/Unistellar astronomer Dr. Ian Weaver, and other art and educational activities for children and adults. The event will take place on the plaza and the park information tent will have a LightSound set up for the blind and low-vision community. The first 300 attendees will also receive a 2024 eclipse patch.

Wright Memorial Watch Party: This event will be at 2380 Memorial Road, Wright-Patterson Air Force Base, from 1-4:30 p.m. Activities include NASA livestream in the theater, an Eclipse Junior Ranger activity, exhibits on the Wright brothers and the history of Wright-Patterson Air Force Base. The event will take place on the Wright Memorial grounds so be sure to bring a blanket and chairs. This party will also have a LightSound set up for the blind and low-vision community.

Huffman Prairie Flying Field Watch Party: This watch party is intended for those who would like to experience safe eclipse viewing without large crowds. The party will take place at the 1905 Replica Hangar site at Huffman Prairie from 1-4:30 p.m. This location is accessed at Gate 16A off Rt. 444, Wright-Patterson Air Force Base. The event will include free eclipse glasses and an Eclipse Junior Ranger activity. Guests are encouraged to enjoy a hike at Huffman Prairie or explore the field where the Wright brothers discovered practical flight.

Boonshoft Museum of Discovery: Visitors to the Boonshoft from 9 a.m.-5 p.m. April 8 may see planetarium shows, do some solar observing, see science lab demos and more. Staff will lead the viewing of the eclipse with telescopes, pinhole viewers and eclipse glasses. The address is 2600 Deweese Parkway, Dayton. More online at

A SOLARbration Weekend: This is taking place multiple days — April 5-9 at the Miami County Fairgrounds. It includes food trucks, vendors, entertainment and activities. There is a double feature movie night set for April 6. Camping is possible, there, too. The address is 650 N. County Road, 25-A, Troy. Visit for more details.

Eclipse Over Springfield: This event is set for 2-4 p.m. and will include a viewing of the eclipse, food trucks, live music, lawn games and more. Solar eclipse glasses are provided. This will be at National Road Commons Park in downtown Springfield. More online at

Moonshade Festival: There will be a three-day festival in West Liberty that includes solar perspectives at historical Piatt Castle Mac-A-Cheek from 10 a.m.-4 p.m. and daily trolly rides from parking areas and parks to downtown. Friday will include fireworks at Lions Park at 8:30 p.m. Saturday will includes dedication of the Andy Detwiler Statute from noon-2:30 p.m., showing the inspirational stories of Detwiler from 1 -3:30 p.m. and stargazing at Lions Park from 8:30-9:30 p.m. Sunday will include a dancing stars fundraiser from 5:30-11 p.m. Monday will include the solar eclipse viewing at 3:10 p.m. More online, including pass prices, at

Ohio Caverns Darkness Tour: The tours will be 9 a.m.-5 p.m. April 8. The park will open at 7:30 a.m. Tours include portions of the historic and natural wonder sections, plus a section not toured during the summer. The first 300 guests to get tickets scanned receive an Ohio Caverns lantern for a guided tour through the caverns. The tour ticket includes entrance into the park with eclipse viewing throughout the park, viewing glasses for eye protection and a gem bag for children ages 5 to 12. The tour is guided and takes one hour. Tours will run throughout the day but pause from 1-3:30 p.m. for viewing the eclipse. The Ohio Caverns are at 2210 E. Ohio 245 in West Liberty. For tickets, visit

Total Eclipse of the Parks, Eclipse Festival: Taking place 1-10 p.m. Saturday, April 6 in Oxford (Butler County). This will have food trucks, space-themed activities, live music and craft beers, a kids corner with inflatables and games and more. The festival is in the Uptown Parks, High Street in Oxford. More online at

There Goes The Sun Watch Party: This event is slated for 2-4 p.m. April 8. Nature specialists, family friendly activities and more. It’s a ticketed event at the Forest Run MetroPark FR Kestrel Shelter, 1976 Timberman Road, Hamilton. The cost is $2 for those 2 and older, free if younger than 2. Visit for more information.

City of Springboro Eclipse Viewing: This event is scheduled for 2-4 p.m. and is a celebration with food, music and education in partnership with Dayton Children’s. Free viewing glasses will go to the first 1,000 in attendance. There will be live music, bounce houses, food trucks and more. The celebration takes place at North Park, 195 Tamarack Trail, Springboro. For more details, call (937) 748-5774 or visit

Find a much larger list online at, and

More about the total solar eclipse

Timing: The Total Solar Eclipse in Southwest Ohio will be between 3:08-3:17 p.m. with the Southwestern parts of Ohio being first and the Cleveland area being the last as it moves toward Canada. The centerline of the eclipse enters Ohio just after 1:50 p.m.

Locations: According to the Ohio Dept. of Natural Resources and NASA, the path of totality, or the most central Southwest Ohio spots to see the total solar eclipse include Darke, Shelby and Auglaize counties. Close to that center, though, are the counties of Montgomery, Miami, Champaign and Preble. The outer edges of the path, where partial darkness will be seen, includes the northwestern portions of Butler and Greene counties. Warren and Hamilton will experience some darkness but are on the edge of the path.

Of note: The Total Solar Eclipse band is 124 miles wide. According to ODNR, “The last total solar eclipse visible in Ohio was in 1806. The next total solar eclipse in Ohio will be in the year 2099.”


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