Fiesta del Sol – When, Where and How to Celebrate the Solar Eclipse

Solar Eclipse Watch Photo

In just a few weeks time, San Antonio will be in the direct viewing path for the Total Solar Eclipse on Monday, April 8, 2024. You may still remember the Annual Solar Eclipse that just took place on October 14, 2023. The difference is, this time, the moon will block the Sun’s bright face — the photosphere — briefly revealing our star’s outer atmosphere: the shimmering corona, or “crown.”

Half of the Alamo City, especially those in the Northwestern part, will experience 99.9 percent coverage. The eclipse will start at 12:14 pm and reach its peak at 1:33 pm. The totality will last for about 2 minutes and 3 seconds, with a total of 1 hour 41 minutes eclipse time. 

National Eclipse is a great online resource that provides detailed viewing estimates for selected locations around San Antonio, as well as the weather forecast to prepare us for this once in a lifetime event. ACM Reminder: Watching an eclipse without proper eclipse glasses can still be very harmful to your eyes.

Best places to see the Total Solar Eclipse in San Antonio

The best place to experience the eclipse’s totality will be in areas that lie west of Highway 281 and north of Highway 90 (with a couple of exceptions to this rule). A few of the neighborhoods include the following:

  • Alamo Ranch
  • Balcones Heights
  • Castle Hills
  • Helotes
  • Hollywood Park
  • Leon Valley
  • The Medical Center
  • La Cantera
  • Neighborhoods around UTSA
  • Shavano Park
  • Stone Oak
  • Timberwood Park

With the Total Eclipse being on a Monday, some school districts in San Antonio and the surrounding area are closing schools on Monday, April 8, the day of the 2024 total eclipse. As of the day this article is published, the school districts confirmed to have a day off include Kerrville ISD, Boerne ISD, Comfort ISD, Comal ISD, and South San Antonio ISD (students only). In addition, many schools are planning to hold activities during the day, and allowing students to view the eclipse. Be sure to check with your school to confirm the schedule for your children.

Total Solar Eclipse Celebration Events

Here are just some of the Solar Eclipse events happening around the city, as well as some home watch-party ideas to help make this once-a-lifetime experience as phenomenal as the eclipse itself.

Get Ready before the THE DAY

San Antonio Public Library – Get Eclipse Ready!

San Antonio Public Library is offering a series of educational events about the upcoming eclipses, as well as information on how to view them safely. Spanish-speaking subject matter experts will be available at most of these events. Check their website for the schedule and locations.

Doseum – Mission Astronaut | February 17 to April 28

Doseum is hosting a special exhibit called Mission: Astronaut. Visitors can embark on an exhilarating journey as they immerse themselves in astronaut training and tackle STEM challenges that simulate real space missions!

Witte Museum – STEAM Sunday: Moon Moves | Sunday, March 10, 1:30 – 2:30 pm

Inspired by the special exhibition Surviving Space: Astronauts and Asteroids and the upcoming total solar eclipse, this hands-on workshop examines the movements of the Sun, Earth, and Moon. You and your family will make your own model to show the orbits of space objects, and demonstrate how an eclipse occurs.

Doseum – Solar Spectacular | March 24, 1-2:30 pm

Join the Doseum’s family workshop and get prepared for the big eclipse on April 8th by creating your very own solar viewers. And doing science is hungry work, so each family will also create a solar oven, which will then be tested by making a tasty treat! Registration is required for the event. 

NASA – Solar Eclipse Mini Lessons

Have a little astronaut who can’t get enough educational information about the eclipse? NASA has a series of mini-lessons and interactive activities, all published online to help them take their Eclipse learning one step further!

Eclipse Day Around San Antonio

Eclipse Party at SeaWorld

The first 2,500 guests will receive SeaWorld eclipse-themed viewing glasses. This special event will also feature unique presentations from our collaborators at Southwest Research Institute explaining the details of the eclipse, along with unique viewing opportunities with our Animal Ambassadors. The party starts at 11:00 am.

Six Flags Fiesta – Solar Eclipse at the Park

Six Flags Fiesta will be offering solar eclipse viewing packages, including the “I Was There” souvenir package, an Eclipse Fireworks and Drone Show viewing package, and a VIP Eclipse Fireworks & Drone package.

National Bridge Cavern – Total Eclipse at the Park

Natural Bridge Caverns is hosting an exclusive VIP party. The viewing party will feature food, loungers, and discounts on tours. The park will be offering a lunch buffet and other activities for guests including family law games and live music. Parking at Natural Bridge Caverns is usually free, but guests will be charged on April 8 for the event. Three different packages are available: the Moon Shadow, The Dark Sky, and The Totality. All packages will include parking, reserved seating areas, and eclipse sunglasses.

Solar Eclipse Viewing at the Witte Museum

The Witte Museum will be at 99.96% obscuration (concealment) during the eclipse maximum. Witte visitors will receive complimentary certified eclipse viewing glasses with general admission (while supplies last). Announcements will be made, and all guests will be invited to go outside and experience the eclipse from the museum grounds.

Solar Eclipse at the Alamo

Experience the solar eclipse at the Alamo! Protect your eyes with the commemorative solar eclipse glasses that feature the iconic parapet roofline of the Alamo. What a cool souvenir!

UTSA Eclipse Campus Viewing Party

UTSA students, faculty, and staff are formally invited to witness the total solar eclipse at a viewing party from noon to 2 p.m. on Monday, April 8. The event will take place at the East Recreation Field Complex on the Main Campus. The event will feature a range of engaging activities and educational opportunities. Angela Speck, professor and chair of the UTSA Department of Physics and Astronomy, will narrate this community viewing experience. Attendees can also participate in a crowd countdown and pick up free, limited-edition Roadrunner eclipse glasses ahead of the eclipse to watch this once-in-a-lifetime event safely.

Eclipse Viewing at Brackenridge Park

The Brackenridge Park Conservancy has a limited number of complimentary eclipse glasses available on a first come, first serve basis. Please email Audrey Schneider Medina ([email protected]) to reserve yours and schedule a pickup time. Everyone is invited to enjoy Alpine Drive (spectacular views) or any other part of the park during the eclipse. Brackenridge Park will be at 99.96% obscuration (concealment) during the eclipse maximum, so this is a great spot to enjoy it.

Tobin Center – Total Eclipse of the Arts 

Experience the celestial spectacle of a lifetime with Total Eclipse of the Arts, a unique eclipse viewing party hosted by the Tobin Center for the Performing Arts. Join us atop the Tobin Parking Garage on the 6th Floor, where the cosmos aligns to offer a breathtaking view of a 99.9% total eclipse right over the heart of downtown San Antonio. Complimentary eclipse viewing glasses will be provided!

Total Eclipse Experience at Cave Without a Name

View the Total Solar Eclipse from the grounds of the Cave! Located in the path of Solar Eclipse Totality, Cave Without a Name is hosting a three-day family-friendly camping event to highlight this natural phenomena. The camping events will include underground performances on Saturday, Sunday, and Monday. These performances are surrounded by nature’s natural acoustics and sublime beauty, simulating light and darkness to the whole light. Visit their website to learn more.

Boerne Total Eclipse Viewing Party 

Get ready to experience the extraordinary phenomenon as the moon completely obscures the sun, casting an enchanting shadow over the land. During this event, you’ll have a perfect unobstructed view of the eclipse from your vehicle or personal lawn chairs. Concessions including a snack bar and beverage bar will be open.

Kerrville Eclipse Festival

The Kerrville Parks and Recreation Department is hosting a Total Solar Eclipse on April 8, 2024. This free event will include scientific speakers from NASA, live music from Judah and the Lion, children’s programming, and 4 minutes and 25 seconds of totality. Visit their website to learn more.

Eclipse Viewing at the San Antonio Parks & Event Centers

Throughout San Antonio, there will be fun activities and eclipse glasses available at various park and event locations, including Eisenhower Park, Garza Community Center, Gill Adult & Senior Center, Granados Adult & Senior Center, Medina River Natural Area, Melendrez Community Center, Phil Hardberger Park, Ward Community Center, and Yates Community Center. Visit the San Antonio Park and Recreation website to find a location near you.

Eclipse Viewing at Texas State Parks

Thirty-one state parks, including Enchanted Rock and Garner State Park, are in the path of totality and a partial eclipse can still be viewed from the remaining parks. A day pass or a camping permit is required to enter a park. You can make a state park reservation here:

Solar Eclipse Dairy Tours at Volleman’s Farms 
Behind the scenes dairy farm tour and wide open spaces to have a picnic and watch the Eclipse in Gustine, Texas. Grab your tickets now


Eclipse Watch at Home

A rare phenomenon like this typically attracts crowds, so we recommend you plan extra time for traffic if you are heading out to any of the Eclipse Watch parties around the city. Don’t feel like dealing with the hassle of heading out, the traffic, and the crowd? You can watch the Solar Eclipse from the comfort of your own home! Whether you are hosting a home eclipse watch party, or just simply hanging out with family and friends, here are a few tips to add some Eclipse flair to your party!

Eclipse Snack Basket

Moon Pies, MilkyWay, Starburst, SunChips, Orbit gum, Eclipse gum, and even Pop Rocks. You will be surprised how many store-bought snacks fit perfectly with this theme!

Proper Eclipse Glasses

It is never safe to look directly at the sun, even during an annular or total solar eclipse. Everyone must wear safe solar eclipse viewing glasses, rather than just regular sunglasses, at all times when watching an eclipse. To read all of NASA’s eye safety guidelines, please click here.

Kid-friendly Eclipse Glasses

You can find endless options for solar eclipse glasses online or at your local store. However, most of them are probably way too big for the little ones. One mom had a great idea to make worry-free eclipse glasses for kids using just a paper plate when the 2017 Solar Eclipse passed by her hometown. Click here to see how she made it.

K-12 Solar Eclipse Activity Guide

NASA has published a helpful guide filled with various eclipse activities, grouped by grade levels. Click here to download a PDF copy for yourself, your children, or your students! You can also check out their website here for other fun, less science-heavy activities.

The last time a solar eclipse in San Antonio fell in the path of totality was in the year 1397 and the next total solar eclipse that can be seen from the contiguous United States will be in 2044. So you don’t want to miss this rare opportunity! Where will you be on April 8, 2024? How do you plan to celebrate the Solar Eclipse? Share your plan and ideas with us in the comments!

Judy Tsai
A first generation immigrant who came to the U.S. for the first time when she was 21 and settled in Texas since then. Judy loves to celebrate both her Taiwanese heritage and all the San Antonio fun happenings. She is mom to an animal lover & expert - August (2015) and Autumn (2018) aka #Meimei (little sister in Chinese). When she is not "mom-ing", Judy works in marketing, makes websites, and runs her own AirBNB. In her free time, she enjoys making crafts, cooking yummy food, volunteering at school and traveling to places whenever she can.