Leelanau News and Events

Sleeping Bear Dunes To Host Eclipse Party

By Craig Manning | April 3, 2024

A total solar eclipse is set to occur next Monday, April 8, and Sleeping Bear Dunes National Lakeshore is inviting spectators to the park to join in an “eclipse viewing event.”

According to NASA, a total solar eclipse will cross North America on April 8, with the moon expected to pass between the sun and the Earth/ During the eclipse, NASA says the moon will block out the face of the sun almost entirely, causing the sky to “darken as if it were dawn or dusk.”

The Sleeping Bear eclipse event will be held from noon to 4pm at the Dune Climb. During those four hours, park staff “will host activities about the sun, eclipses, and the solar system,” provide attendees with viewing glasses to use for safely watching the eclipse, and more. Attendees are encouraged to bring snacks, water, beach chairs, and blankets. The program is free, though participants will either need to have an annual park pass or purchase a day pass to enter the National Lakeshore.

Per the National Lakeshore, the eclipse is expected to start at 1:57pm and end at 4:30pm, achieving its maximum solar coverage of 86.7 percent at approximately 3:11pm.

If cloud cover or other weather conditions preclude visibility of the eclipse, the Sleeping Bear eclipse party will still occur but will be moved to the Philip A. Hart Visitor Center. There, attendees will be able to enjoy a NASA livestream of the eclipse in the visitor center auditorium.

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