Dripping Springs officials declared a local disaster for the the April 8 total solar eclipse during a City Council meeting March 19.

The overview

The city's tourism could potentially quadruple the days leading up to April 8 as visitors flock to the Hill Country to view the rare celestial event. A region is in an eclipse’s path of totality only about every 200 years—meaning the moon will fully cover the sun for up to three minutes, darkening the sky and causing a slight temperature drop—and the Dripping Springs community has been planning for the opportunity to host the event for over a year.

“We’re not gonna have too many, but we are going to have a lot of people and need to be prepared,” Mayor Bill Foulds said March 19.

To safely prepare for so many people, the disaster declaration allows officials to do the following:
  • Activate the Dripping Springs Emergency Management Plan
  • Close city offices April 8
  • Enforce property owners with events with 50 or more attendees to register with the city so emergency services know where events are taking place
Dripping Springs ISD will be closed for the eclipse. All students in the district received a pair of eclipse glasses to safely view the sky, thanks to a sponsorship from the Dripping Springs Community Library.

The options

Residents and tourists alike can join city officials at a “sunblock party” on Mercer Street to watch the eclipse together and enjoy local entertainment and vendors. The street will be closed off to traffic beginning the morning of April 7.

Neighboring businesses will also host their own events, such as Vista Brewing and Bell Springs Winery.

Campsites and hotels are filling up in the area, including the Courtyard by Marriott and Henly RV Park. Rental company Airbnb officials said Austin and the Hill Country are among the most booked areas in the path of totality for April.

Learn more

Travis County officials also declared a disaster March 8. The declaration for Dripping Springs will expire April 19.

For more information, visit www.drippingeclipse.com.