What are you doing on April 8, 2024? While it may seem far away, we encourage you to mark your calendar. On that day, a part of the US will be experiencing a total solar eclipse- and New York State is in its path of totality.
At 3:20 pm, the moon will completely block the face of the sun and parts of the state will be plunged into total darkness. Though the middle of the day, you will experience a hush as twilight conditions blanket the region. For a few minutes, night and day cross paths to produce an other-worldly, once-in-a-lifetime experience.
Seriously. Once in a lifetime. If you miss this, you’re out of luck; the next time we’ll see a total solar eclipse in this part of the country will be in 2144! Thankfully, there’s still plenty of time to make your viewing plans for this stellar event.
Best of all? April 8, 2024 lands on a Monday. That means you can plan for a long weekend trip to celebrate this phenomenon, before, during and after the event.
Why Come to Yates County to Experience the Eclipse?
As previously mentioned, New York State in the path of totality and Upstate New York is the prime viewing region. Because of this, tourists will be flocking left and right to the nearby cities of Rochester and Buffalo, NY to witness the eclipse. If you want to experience this monumental moment in a more tranquil environment, Yates County is your destination, sitting on the edge of the Total Path. We will experience the event for approximately 39 seconds, starting at 3:22pm.
While shorter than some of our nearby cities, the combination of us having less light pollution and being positioned in a more rural setting will make for a more peaceful and personal viewing experience.
Put on your eclipse glasses and prepare for the show. There won’t be a bad seat in the county! Of course, you’re going to want to be outside to fully experience this event. We are planning a viewing party with Finger Lakes Museum with more details being released on the location in the coming months. We’ll have a separate post on that!
Keuka Lake State Park is a great viewing spot with its expansive lawns complete with benches, picnic tables, and a glistening backdrop of Keuka Lake. Even though the state parks are not open for the season yet, you can still utilize the area for viewing.
For something totally unique, plan ahead and view the eclipse from the water: launch your own boat, rent a kayak, canoe, or a private charter for the afternoon. It might still be chilly in April, but you just never know. That would be an experience to brag about for years to come!
What to Do During Your Visit
During springtime in Yates County, the birds will be singing, the flowers will be blooming, and the region will be flourishing with activities. Being present for this total solar eclipse will be a life-changing experience. Make the most of it by checking out these ideas for your celestial trip!
There are plenty of opportunities to breathe in the fresh air. A must on your itinerary should be to explore the Keuka Outlet Trail which takes you between Keuka and Seneca Lakes, through the woods, and past a gorgeous waterfall.
You should allocate a day to Downtown Penn Yan. A historic and quaint town, Penn Yan is a hub for cafes, local shops, and art galleries.
You’re going to need fuel on your adventures. You will be treated to locally sourced food served at family-owned restaurants. You have many choices depending on your tastes, and each place comes with its own Finger Lakes experience. For example, find the “best breakfast in Upstate New York” at Penn Yan Diner, fresh produce from New York State farmers at Fox Run Café and Market, and lakefront dining with a buzzing nightlife at Main Deck. You’ll never go hungry here!
Of course, you can’t come to the Finger Lakes region without tasting our signature wines. We have two official wine trails for you to venture along: the Keuka Lake Wine Trail and Seneca Lake Wine Trail. However, if wine isn’t your speed, you can relax with drinks on tap at Abandon Brewing Company or Laurentide Beer Company.
As for your accommodations for the weekend, we recommend booking sooner rather than later. Take a look at your options: you can choose between familiar chain hotels, charming bed & breakfasts, and vacation rentals that are equipped with extra space, Jacuzzi tubs, pools, kayaks, and more for the larger groups that are traveling together.
Pay Attention to Pop-up Events During Your Visit
As we approach the date, there are sure to be fun solar eclipse themed events and celebrations announced from local businesses and organizations; stay tuned for more updates as we get closer to this astronomical event!