The solar eclipse is only four months away and hotels in its path are booking fast. If you are still thinking about where to go to witness this once-in-a-lifetime event, time is slowly slipping away.

Many towns are holding viewing parties at several different viewing sites throughout the state, and several are having weekend-long events to celebrate the solar eclipse. 

According to the Missouri Department of Natural Resources, the last solar eclipse to hit Missouri was on Aug. 7, 1869 (148 years ago). The 1869 eclipse only covered the northeast corner of the state, but the 2017 eclipse will be visible from several towns in Missouri.

This year’s eclipse will be over Missouri on Monday, Aug. 21.

In the April issue of the River Hills Traveler, information was given on a few towns holding events and what they have going on. In this issue, there will be information on what festivities are planned at Cape Girardeau, Steelville, Ozark Outdoors Riverfront Resort, St. Joseph, Herman, Lathrop, Union, and the Katy Trail.

Cape Girardeau 

Cape Girardeau is holding an event at the Cape Sports Plex on Aug. 21 from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. This will be the first total solar eclipse visible in Cape Girardeau since 1869.

“We will be handing out free T-shirts commemorating the event for the first 200 attendees, and viewing glasses on hand for the first 1,000,” said Stacy Dohogne Lane, director of public relations for the Cape Girardeau Convention & Visitors Bureau.

Cape Girardeau will experience 1 minute and 48 seconds under the moon’s shadow.

Steelville

In Steelville, Wildwood Springs Lodge is offering a reduced rate of $55 per person (per night) for an upstairs room and $65 per person (per night) for a downstairs room on Aug. 20-21. This rate also includes dinner and breakfast.

Ozark Outdoors Riverfront Resort 

Ozark Outdoors Riverfront Resort is hosting an event called, “The Vanishing Sun: A Rare Meramec River Experience.”

“With dozens of cabins, condos, and acres of full hook-up RV and primitive campsites on our property, there’s no need to go anywhere else. Gather along the river with other serious solar buffs to get some of the best seats on Earth,” said Jessica Bostick, with Ozark Outdoors Riverfront Resort.

There will also be an after eclipse party.

St. Jospeh

There are several events going on in St. Joseph. Trails West is holding a weekend-long event of music, entertainment and visual arts on Aug. 18-21 in Civic Center Park in St. Joseph.

The gates will open at 5 p.m. on Friday, 10 a.m. on Saturday, 12 p.m. on Sunday, and 10 a.m. on Monday.

Admission to the festival is with the purchase of a button good for all three days of the festival. Advance buttons for $8 are available July 1 through Aug. 17 at various locations. Buttons at the gate are $10.

Food vendors and concessions are available on the grounds, and guests are not allowed to bring coolers or beverages.

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