Port Clinton and Ottawa County have many unique attractions throughout the year, from the Biggest Week in American Birding to the Walleye Festival, Walleye Drop, fantastic walleye fishing and the Burning Snowman. In 2024, visitors will have a chance to experience the best view of a once in a lifetime total eclipse.
There is the possibility of a four-minute eclipse, one of the longest durations in the path of the Total Solar Eclipse on April 8, 2024.
To make sure everyone is ready, and no one is left in the dark about its arrival, Shores & Islands Ohio, which represents Ottawa and Erie counties — including Sandusky, Cedar Point, Put-in-Bay, and more — will be reminding everyone that we are in the path of totality for a solar eclipse.
The moon will completely block out the sun for approximately four minutes. With unobstructed views on Lake Erie or in the acres of greenspace throughout the area and special viewing parties in our coastal communities, the Shores & Islands Ohio area is an ideal location to witness the celestial event.
Shores & Islands Ohio is launching a web page this week, one year ahead of the big event, as a resource to help visitors safely enjoy the solar eclipse while providing information about local events and activities related to this once-in-a-lifetime opportunity.
The last total solar eclipse in Ohio was in 1806. The next total solar eclipse in Ohio will not be until 2099.
The site, SHORESandISLANDS.com/solar-eclipse, will provide information on all solar eclipse-related events and promotions in the area as well as information to help visitors plan their stay — such as lodging, restaurants, attractions and things to do.
There is even a chart included that provides information on the destination’s communities, exact time the totality will start in the community, and the duration of the totality so guests can make an informed decision on where to best enjoy the view. The site will also include information on how visitors can pick up complimentary solar eclipse viewing glasses from Shores & Islands Ohio welcome centers in Port Clinton and Sandusky, and other area partners.
The site will be continuously updated throughout the upcoming year as new events and promotions are planned. It even includes an online form for local businesses and communities to add their eclipse event information. Once a form is completed, the event details will be added to the calendar.
Event information will include dates, times, and a link to the event organizer website. With the total solar eclipse happening on a Monday, Shores & Islands Ohio is encouraging partners to host festivals and events throughout the entire weekend to encourage visitors to arrive early and stay late. With the surge of visitors comes increased traffic. It would be ideal for guests to stay for several days rather than trying to arrive and depart on the same day.
Shores & Islands Ohio Director of Sales & Marketing, Chris Lewis, believes the region should expect a pretty big influx of visitors for the event, such as the Biggest Week in Birding on May 5-14 this year that expects more than 100,000 bird watchers to invade Northwest Ohio. Or the Walleye Drop, which crowds Port Clinton and is now beamed worldwide on New Year’s Eve.
Total estimated visitors coming to Ohio for the eclipse is between 139,000 and 556,000, with a high percentage of those coming to the Shores & Islands Ohio region. It is expected the local population could triple or quadruple on the day of the eclipse.
Local agencies are working together and meeting regularly to coordinate a safe and pleasant experience for guests.
“Shores & Islands Ohio is an ideal location to experience the solar eclipse,” said Lewis. “There are going to be a lot of creative festivals and events planned. Even in April, the region offers so much to do for guests before, during and after the eclipse. Visitors coming to witness the once-in-a-lifetime event can easily turn their trip into a celestial vacation.”