[UPDATE] This was a phenomenal event and I hope you had a chance to experience it. I enjoyed the event with family near Blairsville where we had about 2 minutes of totality.
What was it like? The skies looked a bit like dusk and the insects started their night routines in the middle of the day! We were in a sparsely populated area, but could hear people yelling in the distance when the event started. The light that made it down to the ground looked sort of like it was flowing in waves. The view of the eclipsed sun was beautiful. It was just surreal and so cool to have this shared experience with everyone around.
Also… we got very lucky with the weather! Clouds were rolling through the area and covered the sun just minutes after the event. If those clouds would have been there any earlier the experience would have been very different, as we would not have been able to directly view the event.
Things I didn’t expect:
- The Georgia DOT traffic signs had alerts about a “weather event” to let drivers know that there would be an eclipse. This was unexpected yet a good idea, as I can’t imagine anyone would continue to drive during such an experience. People literally pulled off to the side of the road just to watch.
- People in the path of totality were selling parking passes just to park in their yard for a view of the event!
- Solar viewing glasses sold out a couple of weeks in advance – make sure you purchase yours early if you plan to see one in the future (don’t use old ones and risk damaging your vision)
- Traffic was extremely bad after the event. The areas of Georgia that experienced the totality are not usually packed with large numbers of people all leaving the area at once. Every road that was heading back towards the bigger towns was jammed with cars. A trip that usually takes 2 hours was about 5 hours on that day… some people reported even longer delays!
Overall the Total Solar Eclipse was an amazing event, and I would love to see one again. If you get the chance to view one in the future, definitely try to make time for it.
Visit the NASA Solar Eclipse Page for information about future eclipse events.
[ORIGINAL POST] A portion of the Georgia Mountains will be in the totality of the Solar Eclipse happening on August 21, 2017! There are a number of places and events where you can join festivities aimed at maximizing the viewing experience. Please note this page is still a work in progress (I have a few more updates and data points to share).
McCaysville in Fannin County
Totality starts 2:34:08 p.m. and will last for 1 min, 34 sec
Morganton in Fannin County
Totality starts 2:34:45 p.m. and will last for 1 min, 10 sec
- Total Eclipse of the Sun Afternoon on the Farm by The Cooks’ Farm – (1 – 5) $125 per person, August Total Eclipse menu will feature duck, honey, pork, pickles, produce from our farm properties, and assorted beverages and spirits! Chefs volunteer for the day to learn new skills, raise funds for the farm and its animals, and continue to support Lit’l Pond’s mission of sustainability. Seating limited to 40 guests.
Blairsville in Union County
Totality starts 2:34:54 pm and will last for 1 min, 59 sec (Partial phase starts 1:05 pm)
- Branan Lodge/Wesley Mountain Village Viewing Party –
- Crossing Creeks Eclipse Party –
- Food Truck Festival & Viewing Party – Spend the day (11-4) at Meeks Park with your friends and family. Food trucks will be onsite for your dining pleasure. FREE admission. Sponsored by Rotary of Union County.
- Paradise Hills Winery & Spa Eclipse Viewing Party – enjoy the event (12 – 6) featuring live music provided by the local high school Steel Drum Band! General Admission ($15) includes access to venue, viewing glasses & live music. VIP Admission ($40) includes access to venue, viewing glasses, live music, souvenir wine glass, 1 glass of wine, appetizers and VIP private viewing area in the vineyards.
- Solar Eclipse Block Party & Farm to Table Luncheon @ The Sawmill Place – Enjoy a delicious Farm to Table lunch (bring your lawn chairs to tailgate or limited inside seating) while you prepare to witness this natural phenomenon! $100 includes all of the following: 1 reserved parking place at The Sawmill Place restaurant, 4 meals (fresh salad, Springer Mountain fried chicken tenders, fresh locally grown peas, red skin mashed potatoes, grilled corn cakes, beverage, & dessert), Access to the restaurant for drink refills and restrooms, Event memorabilia goodie bag, Solar eclipse sunglasses. Portion of the proceeds to benefit Union County Schools Science Dept.
- Viewing Party @ Union County High School Football Stadium
Hiawassee in Towns County
Totality starts 2:35:01 p.m. and will last for 2 min, 27 sec
- Total Solar Eclipse Retreat – Aug, 18-22, Enota Mountain Retreat Center – reconnect with the four elements, air, water, earth and fire culminating with the once in a lifetime total eclipse of the sun. vspotz.com
- Eclipse Party – Aug. 21, 1-5 pm, Cane Creek Vineyards. cranecreekvineyards.com
Blue Ridge in Fannin County
Totality starts 2:35:07 p.m. and will last for 35 seconds
Dillard in Rabun County
Totality starts 2:35:38 p.m. and will last for 2 min, 38 sec
- Outasight – Aug. 20-21 An eclipse viewing party at Rabun Gap-Nacooche School with music, food and astronomers explaining the physics of the eclipse. $5 admission includes eclipse glasses. explorerabun.com/total-eclipse
- Dillard House – Aug. 21 – outdoor BBQ and Solar eclipse. dillardhouse.com
- Dillard Experience Extraordinary – Aug. 19-20 – Fun, food and great activities at Dillard City Town Hall
- Solar Eclipse Family Fun – Aug. 19-21 – A weekend of fishing and kid-friendly activities with a square dance and fish fry on Saturday night. andystroutfarm.com
- Black Rock Mountain State Park – details coming soon. All campsites are already booked for the eclipse weekend
- River Vista RV Resort – Aug. 18-23 – Eclipse film, kids crafts including eclipse viewers. rvmountianvillage.com
Sky Valley in Rabun County
Totality starts 2:35:42 p.m. and will last for 2 min, 38 sec
Clayton in Rabun County
Totality starts 2:35:46 p.m. and will last for 2 min, 35 sec
- Timpson Creek Farm Eclipse Viewing Party and Cook Out – (12:30 – 8) celebrate with a cook out including fresh, Organic farm dishes prepared by area chefs and a whole hog pit roasted on site by Nick Jennings (executive chef of Restaurant Lorene). Event begins with light refreshments to watch the Eclipse occuring just after 2:30 PM. Following the event, proceed to buffet style farm meal with live music and a bonfire. Includes glasses you will need to watch the event safely. ($20 ages 12+ or $50 family 2 adults + 2 kids under 12)
Tiger in Rabun County
Totality starts 2:35:46 p.m. and will last for 2 min, 32 sec
- Coach, Bus, RV and Campsites for Eclipse Viewing – Aug. 20, opens at 5pm to Aug. 22 noon, Rabun Arena – all sites reserved in advance – rabunarena.com
Tallulah Falls in Rabun County
Totality starts 2:36:06 p.m. and will last for 2 min, 21 sec
- Tallulah Gorge Solar Eclipse Festival – Aug 21, 1-3pm, Tallulah Gorge State Park – Stations to make or use eclipse viewing instruments as well experts on hand to answer eclipse questions. Schools are encouraged to bring students. gastateparks.org
Toccoa in Stephens County
Totality starts 2:36:36 p.m. and will last for 1 min, 59 sec (Partial phase starts 1:07 p.m.)
- Totally Toccoa Street Party is in Historic Downtown Toccoa (12 – 3) in the First Citizens parking lot across from the Ritz Theatre. We will have food, live music, and giveaways, including safety glasses which will be provided to everyone! We will also be live-streaming the NASA presentation inside the Historic Ritz Theatre.
Helen in White County
Totality starts 2:35:47 p.m. and will last for 1 min, 41 sec
Clarkesville in Habersham County
Totality starts 2:36:18 p.m. and will last for 1 min, 44 sec
- Total Eclipse of the Park (12 – 4) in Pitts Park will feature live entertainment, food, and family-friendly activities. Free water and eclipse viewing glasses will be available at the park. FREE.
Hartwell in Hart County
Totality starts 2:37:48 p.m. and will last for 1 min, 52 sec
Royston in Franklin County
Totality starts 2:38:20 p.m. and will last for 45 sec
- Kaya Vineyard and Winery Total Solar Eclipse Watch Party 2017 – watch party begins at 1:00pm and ends at 5:00pm. Ticket includes a Kaya SWAG bag which includes: a Kaya t-shirt (first come first serve for sizes), stemless wine glass, koozie, a taste of 4 Kaya wines, and glasses to watch the entire solar eclipse! This day will be filled with food, beverages, and science!