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Aug-18-2017 01:53printcomments

Eclipse Info for Oregon's Path of Totality Salem-Area Viewing

Important reminders and announcements for Monday's total solar eclipse

eclipse path of totality
The eclipse hits the Oregon Coast between Newport & Lincoln City at 10:15 a.m. (PDT)

(SALEM, Ore.) - The first total solar eclipse since 1979 is an anxiously-awaited event. The shadow of the Moon, the umbra, does not touch any other landmass or island before it touches Oregon on Monday morning.

The eclipse hits the Oregon Coast between Newport & Lincoln City at 10:15 a.m. (PDT), and will continue moving across the path of totality throughout the day.

With the total solar eclipse coming through Oregon on Monday, the state is already seeing higher-than-normal levels of traffic in Central and Eastern Oregon.

ODOT is reminding motorists that in Oregon, if an emergency, roadside or tow vehicle is on the side of the road displaying warning lights, you are required by law to move over a lane, and if you cannot do that safely or you are on a two-lane road, you must slow down to at least five mph under the speed limit.

The state, as well as cities and counties in the Path of Totality, have established a Joint Information System to get information to the public and media.

Mid-Willamette Valley is preparing for a large influx of visitors. Neither the City of Salem or Oregon Department of Transportation plan to close any of the bridges or roads in Salem during the eclipse. Rumors to the contrary are false.

In the days leading up to the eclipse and area residents have been encouraged to stock up on food, water and gas before the crowds arrive.

Here is a list of important reminders and announcements for Monday's total solar eclipse:

Watching the Eclipse SAFELY

“Proper eye protection is necessary to safely view partial phases of a solar eclipse,” said Dr. Karen Landers, Marion County Health Officer.

“The safest way to view an eclipse is with solar eclipse glasses that meet international safety standards. Regular sunglasses are not safe for viewing the eclipse.”

Eclipse glasses are available at many local retailers; look for ISO 12312-2 to ensure eclipse glasses meet safety standards.

What's your destination?

Thousands of people are coming to the areas in the path of totality, and many expect to find a place to eat and sleep once they arrive. This may be a challenge for a great deal of people, and so the City of Salem has opened it's parks to visitors.

Because of the unique nature of this event, the City will allow people to set up a small tent, or roll out a sleeping bag/blanket in a park to save their viewing spot and stay overnight beginning the evening of August 19.

All other park rules will still be enforced. High impact camping activities such as RVs, trailers, vehicles in the grass, open fires, or digging pits are not allowed.

Please note that other park rules, such as those prohibiting alcohol, smoking and vaping​, are also still in effect. ​

All parks will be monitored by public works staff, with the 13 large parks having a dedicated presence. Other City parks will be visited on a route basis.

Note: SCHOOLS/SCHOOL PROPERTY: No. All school property will be closed to the public until Tuesday.

The City is placing additional restroom facilities and drinking water in the following parks:

  • Riverfront Park
  • Minto-Brown Island Park
  • Wallace Marine Park
  • Bush’s Pasture Park
  • River Road Park
  • Cascade Gateway Park
  • Northgate Park​
  • Woodmansee Park
  • McKay Park
  • Bryan Johnston Park
  • Geer Park

The following parks will have additional restroom facilities:

  • Lansing Park
  • Battle Creek

The City is also placing medical aid and informational tents in select parks:​

  • Saturday, August 19: Riverfront Park, Minto-Brown Island Park
  • Sunday, August 20: Riverfront Park, Minto-Brown Island Park, Wallace Marine Park
  • Monday, August 21: Riverfront Park, Minto-Brown Island Park​, Wallace Marine Park, McKay Park​

Marion County Parks

Marion County parks will be open normal hours on Monday, August 21, with the exception of St. Louis Fish Ponds which will open at 6 a.m. All county parks are day use only and first come, first serve.

There is a $5 daily parking fee for all vehicles that park on the side of North Fork Road and in county parks accessed from North Fork Road including North Fork Park, Salmon Falls Park, Bear Creek Park day use parking and Lomker's Bridge day use area. Parking fee stations are located along North Fork Road and in each park.

The following safety rules apply:

  • A burn ban was issued on August 1: No campfires or briquette barbecues are allowed in any county park; however, gas barbecues are allowed.
  • Alcohol, glass containers and smoking are prohibited in all county parks.
  • Discharge of firearms, ammunition and other types of explosives are also prohibited in county parks.
  • Do not pull your car into tall grass at any time
  • For more information about Marion County parks, visit www.co.marion.or.us/PW/Parks.

Going out on the Water

Are you planning to be on the water for the eclipse? The Oregon State Marine Board, marine law enforcement and boating facility providers offer the following boating safety tips so everyone can have an unforgettable time on the water.
  • Arrive early. Expect gridlock on highways and access points before, during and after the event. Once out on the water, plan to stay a while. If a boating facility is at capacity, have a backup plan for where to go. Single cars that park in boat trailer parking may be ticketed or towed. Parking on road shoulders or in the grass is discouraged due to potential fire hazards and could impede emergency responders.
  • Have plenty of food, water, and anchor line. It's also highly recommended to have a port-a-potty and to take advantage of floating restrooms. Leave no trace; dispose of garbage properly.
  • Prep your boat ahead of time. Avoid prepping the boat at the ramp to keep the ramp clear for efficient launching and retrieving for others. Paddlers are urged to use the bank to launch and retrieve.
  • Anchor or beach the boat during the different phases and totality. With congested waterways comes the increased risk of collisions. It's best to find a good spot and stay put. If you need to be underway, go slow and be aware of what's directly in front and to the sides of you. Expect people in float toys and wading in the water near the shoreline.
  • Have special viewing glasses for the eclipse and avoid looking in the sky for long periods of time. Alternate between the viewing glasses and regular sun glasses to protect your eyes from not only the sun, but the glare off the water.
  • Observe all regulations, including slow-no wake rules at boat ramps, marinas or moorages, floating home moorages and people working at water level. As an added courtesy, operate at slow-no wake speeds within 100 feet of other boaters.

All boating and night time navigation rules apply. Running lights are required during the eclipse and anchor lights are required for power-driven boats and sailboats at anchor. Nonmotorized boats can use a flashlight or lighted lantern. It is important to be seen during the two minutes of darkness.

Law enforcement will be on the water, paying close attention to boats operating unsafely during the eclipse. The fine for unsafe boating is $465, so be patient, courteous, and stay on the water a while to fully enjoy this once-in-a-lifetime event.

To find a boating facility in the path of totality and other eclipse resources, visit www.oregon.gov/OSMB/Pages/Eclipse.aspx. (Facility closures are displayed with an orange boat icon on the map layer.)

Wheatland Ferry opening early August 21

On Monday, August 21, the Wheatland Ferry will open an hour early at 4:30 a.m. in coordination with local eclipse related events.

For more information about hours, fees and operating status of either the Wheatland or Buena Vista ferries contact Marion County Public Works at (503) 588-5304 or visit www.co.marion.or.us/PW/ferries/Pages/default.aspx.

Marion County Disposal Sites

All Marion County disposal sites will be closed on Monday, August 21. This includes Salem-Keizer Recycling & Transfer Station, North Marion Recycling & Transfer Station and Brown's Island Demolition Landfill. All disposal sites will return to regular hours on Tuesday, August 22.

With the exception of the county disposal sites, Marion County business offices will be open regular hours on Monday, August 21.

Residential Garbage Service

Residential garbage service will be closed on Monday, August 21, for all of Marion County due to the eclipse. Service will be delayed by one day the balance of the week. For questions, contact your local garbage hauler or the Mid-Willamette Valley Garbage & Recycling Association at (503) 390-4000.

City of Salem Info Distribution Channels


Community Alert System:


Social Media:


  • #SalemOR
  • #OReclipse
  • #Eclipse2017
  • #SurvivetheEclipse

Phone Numbers

  • 9-1-1 is for true EMERGENCIES ONLY. Do not call 911 to inquire about traffic, the weather, or the eclipse. The general rule with calling 911 is to call whenever there is an immediate danger to life or property. Reporting a crime in progress, a medical emergency, a fire, or a traffic crash with injuries are all examples of when to call 911.
  • 503-588-6279: The City of Salem’s information line for those who are looking for general City information during the eclipse. This service will be active Friday, August 18 to Monday, August 21, 8 a.m. to 8 p.m.
  • 2-1-1 Normally a community resource referral number for people in Oregon and southwest Washington, the 211 call takers are set up to answer eclipse-associated questions from August 16 to 23. For assistance, you only need to know the zip code for the area. The service is available 24/7. You can reach this service by dialing 211, texting eclipse to 898211, or visiting 211info.org.
  • 3-1-1 The City of Salem's Public Works Dispatch is available for reporting all things related to city streets. Crews are always available to respond to situations like street closures, non-working traffic signals or traffic hazards, like objects blocking a lane of travel.
  • 5-1-1 The Oregon Department of Transportation's TripCheck service provides travel info by phone via a voice recognition system; just follow the prompts. Find out road conditions all throughout the state and subscribe to receive regional alerts. The service is also available online at www.tripcheck.com.

A fun commemorative item to pick up on Monday (and affordable too) is the thermogenic forever "eclipse" stamp at the U.S. Post Office. They actually change from the heat, they get brighter. On the back of the page of stamps it shows picture of US & the eclipse path. That is just one of many fun commemorative items and souvenirs available for this memorable event.

Be Informed. Be Prepared. Enjoy the historical event!

Sources: Oregon State Marine Board; city of Salem; ODOT; Marion County


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