Roughly 120 events are on tap in and around Columbia for the weekend of the 2017 eclipse, with most running Friday, Aug. 18 through Monday, Aug. 21.
While some events already are sold out, the following still have availability. Check with your host about the availability of glasses.
HISTORIC COLUMBIA WATER BALLOON BATTLE: The third annual Historic Water Balloon Battle will use water balloons to re-enact historic battles. Sort of. Guests will break into teams to learn about military tactics through history and battle on the grounds of the Robert Mills House & Gardens. After the water battle, there will be drinks and light appetizers on the grounds of the historic site, which is where the reenactment veers a bit. 5:30-7 p.m. Friday, Aug. 18 at Robert Mills House and Gardens. $15 for members and $20 for non-members. Attendees must be 21 years of age or older. Visit historiccolumbia.org, email firstname.lastname@example.org or call (803) 252-1770 x 23 to purchase tickets.
ECLIPSE EVE DRIVE-IN MOVIE: It’s an old-fashioned Drive-In Movie night with an educational short on the history of eclipses followed by “Escape from Planet Earth.” 7:30-11:40 p.m. Sunday, Aug. 20 at Historic Columbia Speedway. $25 per car.
ARTS AND DRAUGHTS – ECLIPSE EDITION: Enjoy beer tastings of the Eclipse beer from the Whig, live music and food vendors. There will be tours of the “ReTooled” exhibition throughout the event with specific art-making activities and scavenger hunts that are inspired by works in the exhibition. Community partners Richland Library, USC’s Ink & Paper, and more will be on hand with up-cycling-inspired DIY activities. 7-11 p.m. Friday, Aug. 18 at Columbia Museum of Art. $5-$9. www.columbiamuseum.org
THE SOLAR ECLIPSE PLAYS: Get an early start on the weekend with “Jasper Project presents Syzygy: The Solar Eclipse Plays.” These are premieres of six 10-minute plays written by six South Carolina playwrights to commemorate the eclipse. There will be a reception for attendees of both performances from 9-10 p.m. in the Tapp’s gallery space. Playwrights will be available for questions during the reception. 7 p.m. and 10 p.m. Thursday, Aug. 17 at Tapp’s Arts Center. $10. www.tappsartscenter.com
ECLIPSE WEEKEND COMEDY: BEN KRONBERG LIVE: This is part of the Third Friday Comedy Series at Tapp’s. Ben Kronberg is a nationally touring comedian that has been seen on Last Comic Standing, Comedy Central, Last Call w/ Carson Daily, Jimmy Kimmel and John Oliver’s Stand Up Special. Kronberg will be joined by local comedians John Gibson and Topher Riddle. 7:30 p.m. Friday, Aug. 18 at Tapp’s Arts Center. $10-$12. www.tappsartscenter.com
ECLIPSEFEST 2017: This is a night of tributes to favorite rock and roll bands with Synchronicity (The Police) and Hey Johnny Park! (The Foo Fighters). To close the night, these two groups will be joined by Columbia musicians to perform Pink Floyd’s “Dark Side of the Moon.” 8-11 p.m. Saturday, Aug. 19 at Music Farm Columbia. $10. www.musicfarm.com
SUMMER’S END SOLAR RUN: Kick off the solar celebration with a 5K run and 1-mile fun walk through Saluda Shoals Park. Cool off during the run in misting stations and finish up with the Summer’s End Celebration by enjoying local food, live music and craft beers. Proceeds benefit the Saluda Shoals Foundation. All ages welcome. 6 p.m. Sunday, Aug. 20 at Saluda Shoals Park. $30. www.icrc.net
JAZZ IN THE PARK: Come and enjoy some great jazz from local artists “Don and Sara” and the “Mean Gene Swing Machine” (formerly Blythewood Jazz Orchestra). This is a free event however it will also be fundraiser for the Doko Meadows Park Foundation. Suggested donations are $1 for children, $2 for adults, collected at the gate. All donations will go to helping improve beautiful Doko Meadows Park. Movie nights and other eclipse events are planned daily through Monday, Aug. 21. Doko Meadows Park, Blythewood. (803) 403-6769
TIN ROOF AND MUSIC FARM PRESENT ECLIPSE EVE, A MUSIC BLOCK PARTY: Tin Roof opens for brunch at 11 a.m. with live music from Jon Rooks . At 2 p.m., the music moves to the outdoor stage with Kelly Cheats, The Reggie Sullivan Band and Seventy Six and Sunny playing throughout the afternoon and early evening. Free show for ages 21 and older. www.musicfarm.com
THE MAIN EVENT: ECLIPSE VIEWING PARTIES
“TOTAL ECLIPSE OF THE PARK:” The Columbia Fireflies will have a “Total Eclipse of the Park” game and viewing event during the eclipse. The Fireflies will play at 1:05 p.m., with a STEM Festival featuring Columbia business leaders with interactive booths set up to teach kids about Science, Technology, Engineering, and Math begins at 10 a.m. The game will pause at 2:41 p.m. for the eclipse and visitors will be given eclipse glasses. http://www.milb.com/ index.jsp?sid=t3705
TOTAL ECLIPSE TAILGATE: Total Eclipse Tailgate at the S.C. State Fairgrounds is an eclipse party. There will be parking, entertainment, food concessions, and a limited number of viewing glasses from the city of Columbia. Visitors can purchase advance single-day parking spots for cars, buses, and RVs in the fairgrounds parking lot, which will be open 9 a.m.-4 p.m. A limited number of parking spots will be available for purchase the day of the event at the entry gates. www.scstatefair.org
USC: There will be discussions and viewings at roughly 10 spots around campus. Activities start at 12:30 p.m. Examples: At McKissick, join USC's Naturalist-in-Residence Rudy Mancke in exploring the nature of solar eclipses from 1-3 p.m. outside on the historic Horseshoe. Find details of USC events and locations at sc.edu/eclipse.
LEXINGTON COUNTY BASEBALL STADIUM: The stadium is opening up at 8 a.m. to allow people to view the eclipse. No charge for parking; a limited number of eclipse glasses will be offered. www.goblowfish.com
ECLIPSE DAY AT EDVENTURE: Come mingle with astronaut characters, learn the science behind the total solar eclipse and enjoy hands-on activities in advance of the main event in the afternoon. 9 a.m.-5 p.m. Monday, Aug. 21 at EdVenture Children’s Museum. www.edventure.org
BENEDICT COLLEGE TOTAL SOLAR ECLIPSE EXPERIENCE: 11 a.m.-3 p.m. at Benedict’s Charlie W. Johnson Stadium, 2046 Two Notch Road. Educational seminars, food, drinks, solar games for the kids and a performance by the Benedict College Marching Band of Distinction. Free; plus, free solar eclipse glasses to first 6,000 guests. Come tailgate starting at 10 a.m. http://www.benedict.edu
ON THE WATER: Want to be on or near the water when you view the historic event? There are plenty of options.
▪ Dreher Island State Park will have presentations, food trucks, kayak rentals and more.
▪ Solar 17 at Lake Murray offers lakeside viewing of the eclipse on both sides of the Lake Murray dam. Pay normal park fees ($3 per car, $2 motorcycles, $5 buses) and get free solar glasses and water. The event is 11 a.m.-3 p.m.
▪ Congaree National Park programming will include “Shadows and Science in the Wilderness” and ranger-led hikes during the eclipse.
ECLIPSE EXTRAVAGANZA: The Eclipse Extravaganza at Saluda Shoals is a family event with eclipse-themed games, activities, crafts and exhibits. Young scientists can do unique hands-on solar experiments. Everyone attending will receive a pair of eclipse glasses and a one of a kind Eclipse Snow Cone. Local NASA solar system ambassador Larry Metcalf will be on hand to help guide you through the event. www.icrc.net
Among events now sold out:
▪ SC State Museum (eclipse day; availability for weekend events)
▪ Star Wars: Musiclipse, with SC Philharmonic
▪ Historic Eclipse in the Gardens, Historic Columbia
▪ Saluda Shoals park’s on-the-river viewing opportunity. Park rangers will guide a group along the lower Saluda River to a viewing area on the river. After the eclipse, the group will slowly make its way back down the river through some of Columbia’s most scenic natural areas.
Find a complete list of Columbia area total eclipse events at www.totaleclipsecolumbiasc.com