via Visit Hopkinsville

A solar eclipse is as good a reason to take a vacation as any. Actually, that’s a super serious statement. The August 21, 2017 eclipse that’s going to occur is providing a huge tourism boost for those looking to catch a primo view of the once-in-a-lifetime event… especially for Hopkinsville, KY, the tiny town that’s going to get the best, longest view of the eclipse. And by “longest”, we’re talking about 2 minutes and 40 seconds. If you’re looking to really take advantage of this rare opportunity, consider a trip down to Hoptown.

via Flickr/army.arch *Adam*
via Facebook/Kelly “Little Green Men” Days


Hopkinsville is preparing for the eclipse. Schools will even be closed on the day of the big show! They’re also planning lots of events like Eclipse-Con, SonFest (a Christian music festival), lectures by Brother Guy Consolmagno (the Director of Vatican Observatory), a talk about Edgar Cayce, a Christian mystic prophet from Hopkinsville, and scores of other events and festivals. One that ties nicely in with the eclipse is The Kelly “Little Green Men” Days Festival, which celebrates a reported alien encounter in nearby Kelly on August 21, 1955 (coincidental date, no?) during the height of UFO mania. After seeing a strange streak of light above the Sutton family farm, several people claim to have been attacked by “little green men” with huge heads, big glowing eyes, long arms with claw-like hands, and pointy ears. Of course, the story changed many, many times with many, many retellings, but the town is still determined to get to the truth of the matter, and celebrate whatever happened that night, even decades later.

via Facebook/Solar Eclipse Hopkinsville 2017
via Facebook/Solar Eclipse Hopkinsville 2017

Where to go

But back to the eclipse. If you’re planning on being in Hopkinsville for it, reserve a campsite and a viewing spot in town— as of right now, the Trail of Tears Commemorative Park Viewing Site still has some spots left, as does nearby Orchardale Shepherd Farm, Western Hills Golf Course, Casey Jones Distillery, MB Roland Distillery, and a few others. Their website even has a list of spots selling solar eclipse-grade sunglasses, so you will safely be able to watch the moon pass in front of the sun.

via Facebook/Pennyroyal Arts Council
via Facebook/Casey Jones Distillery


What to do

Other things to do while you’re in Hopkinsville before and after the three-minute eclipse include checking out a classic film at the historic Alhambra Theatre, touring the Casey Jones Distillery to taste some old Kentucky moonshine (a fitting way to celebrate the lunar event), and meet goats or play a round of putt-putt at Christian Way Farms & Mini Golf. Enjoy some mouth-watering smoked meat at the Woodshed Pit Bar-B-Q or a classic steak dinner at Horseshoe Steak House; there are lots of cute dining options in and around town.

via Facebook/City of Hopkinsville Local Government

The town is sure to be packed with amateur astronomers and curious visitors, but Hopkinsville is prepared. As they say, “Our community’s big enough to provide everything you’ll need and want for the 2017 Eclipse weekend experience. And, we’re small enough to make sure you feel at home.” Sounds like a really nice place to have an experience with a cosmically significant event that’s so rare, it might give you an existential crisis.

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    • Probably not at this point. It’s a pretty small town. But Hopkinsville is not far from Clarksville, Tn where you should still be able to find something. Also, Bowling Green, KY is about 1 1/2 away and you can definitely find accommodations there.

    • Basedon your Long/Lat you will see a PARTIAL Solar Eclipse

      Lat.: 53.4357 N Long.: 113.4228 W
      Partial Solar Eclipse — Magnitude: 0.748
      Obscuration: 68.80%
      Event Date Time (UT) Alt Azi
      Start of partial eclipse (C1) : 2017/08/21 16:24:01.4 33.7 118.8
      Maximum eclipse : 2017/08/21 17:35:04.3 41.9 138.3
      End of partial eclipse (C4) : 2017/08/21 18:49:37.8 47.4 162.9


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