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City holds final townhall ahead of upcoming eclipse


Cove Leader-Press


For those who haven’t heard, Copperas Cove is in the path of totality for the solar eclipse on April 8. Our specific area will experience 4 minutes and 22.7 seconds of totality, making it an ideal location for those who want to view and experience the eclipse.

The city of Copperas Cove and many of its residents have been working hard to prepare for the event. The city held its final meeting on the eclipse Wednesday at 6 p.m. at the Civic Center.

There, Community Event Specialist Samantha Rozelle went over what the city can expect and how we can better prepare ourselves for the event.

Safety is very important. A certified solar filter is needed to safely watch the eclipse—aside from the few minutes of totality. The Civic Center has solar eclipse glasses available for purchase which will allow people to safely view the eclipse.

The population of the city is expected to double for the day of the eclipse. 

If possible, try not to travel on the day of the eclipse. The eclipse will last from 12:18 p.m. until 2:59 p.m. with totality occurring between 1:36 p.m. and 1:40 p.m. Rozelle warned people to expect hour-long traffic delays and congestion during that time—particularly following the eclipse as people will want to head home afterwards. 

It will be darker during the eclipse, so make sure to use your headlights when driving.

Rozelle strongly encouraged Covites to participate in the city’s events over the weekend, but to stay home on the day of the eclipse and watch it from there. To prepare, just in case you need to leave, she asked residents to check their tire repair kits and vehicle emergency kits before April 5. They are encouraged to make sure that they have enough gas in their vehicles as well. Those who have prescriptions to pick up are encouraged to refill them early if possible. Those who have appointments are asked to reschedule if possible.

Get all the groceries and/or supplies that you might need before April 5.

Residents are also encouraged to register for CodeRed Alerts.

Expect problems with internet and cell phone use during that time. This may also cause interruptions with credit card sales and usage. Businesses and shoppers are encouraged to have a plan in place just in case. If you are planning on taking cash payments or buying items with cash, get that cash in advance as ATM machines may be down as well.

The city will have limited resources available that day and there will be no waste collection. Many businesses will be closed that day or have alternative hours, many of which will be posted on the city’s website.

Schools will be closed.

Hotels are already full, and campsites are filling up quickly. If you want to reserve a camping spot, try to do so as soon as possible.

On April 5 and 6 there will be eclipse astronomer presentations at the Cove Theater.

Camp TotaliTee will be held at Ogletree Gap Preserve. They are no longer holding the planned disc golf event, but there will be plenty of vendors and activities throughout the weekend. They will also host several live concerts. The Chamber of Commerce is still looking for volunteers for the Ogletree Gap event. Those interested can call (254) 547-7571 for more information.

Copperas Cove Special Events is holding Spring Into the Eclipse festival April 6-8 at City Park. They will hold a flying frisbee dog event, an adult softball tournament, performers, and plenty of vendors and activities.

Kate Street Park will be holding a viewing event April 6-8.

Several churches will be holding viewing events including Grace United Methodist Church (April 7-8), Cove First Baptist Church (April 7-9), First Presbyterian Church (April 8), and Immanuel Lutheran Church (April 8). 

The Copperas Cove Library will also be holding an event April 8.

To find out more about what each group has planned, check out Cove’s eclipse event page on Facebook at

“Cove is working really hard on this,” said Mike Zehr. He thought the meeting was very informative and would help him with being able to answer others’ questions as well. “We have to plan ahead…I’m looking forward to seeing the eclipse—not the traffic though!”

Zehr and his wife, Denis Zehr own Armadillo Properties and plan on hosting their own small event at their location, charging for parking, and holding a viewing party.

“We’re very excited about the eclipse,” said Denise Zehr.

Copperas Cove Special Events is selling solar eclipse shirts and other merchandise with a Copperas Cove flair ahead of April’s big event.

Shirts for youth are $15 in sizes small through extra-large, and adult shirts are $20 in size small through 3XL.

The shirts come in a variety of colors and themes, such as “I Got Mooned” – Copperas Cove, TX 4-08-2024 in black and white. Another theme in a variety of colors celebrates the eclipse and the City of Copperas Cove’s Spring into the Eclipse Festival, held the weekend prior to and on the day of the eclipse. Other shirts simply have a sun and moon image and “total solar eclipse” 4-08-2024.

Other merchandise includes magnets, keychains, totebags and more.

The office is also selling ISO-approved solar eclipse viewing glasses, at $3 per pair or 4 for $10.

Those interested in purchasing shirts or other merchandise should stop by the Copperas Cove Civic Center, Monday-Friday between 8 a.m. and 5 p.m.


Copperas Cove Leader Press

2210 U.S. 190
Copperas Cove, TX 76522
Phone:(254) 547-4207