TVA Prepares for Total Eclipse Visitors

What are you doing for the August 21, 2017, solar eclipse? Consider taking in the view on one of the South’s most beautiful reservoirs.

Tens of thousands of people are expected to descend on the Tennessee Valley in order to view the August 21 total solar eclipse.

Before all eyes are looking up that day, experts at TVA are looking around to ensure their public sites will be prepared to handle the expected crowds.

“We’re preparing for the eclipse like any other busy holiday weekend,” says Jerry Fouse, TVA’s recreation strategy specialist. “With all the folks visiting, we want our recreation areas perfect so they keep coming back.”

For the best view of the eclipse, Fouse recommends the following TVA reservoirs, along with associated campgrounds, public lands and day-use areas: Fontana, Tellico, Fort Loudon and Watts Bar.

In addition, at least 18 Tennessee state parks are offering weekend eclipse celebrations and are preparing for a potential influx of public attendance on public lands. Six of these events occur in close proximity to TVA lands or directly on the reservoirs. The overlap is likely to spur record attendance on TVA recreational assets.

And that’s a good thing. “We’re open for this unique opportunity, and we want everyone to safely enjoy it,” says Fouse.

According to a 2017 University of Tennessee Study, the annual value of recreation on the Tennessee River reservoir system for the region is nearly $12 billion. Keeping TVA areas open will help stimulate local businesses as they cater to tourists visiting the region to experience the total eclipse.

Fouse says that many TVA campgrounds have already been booked months in advance, but there are plenty of free sites that the public can use—including 293,000 acres of undeveloped TVA public lands.

Learn more about TVA public recreation sites. And visit these sites for eclipse safety recommendations and other helpful eclipse information: The Great American Eclipse of 2017 and the NASA Eclipse site.

Are you coming? Don't forget to record your eclipse experiences and share photos and videos using #TVAFun.

It’s summer, which means it’s time to have fun in the sun on the Tennessee Valley's lakes! Not sure where to start? We have you covered! Check out some of the best recreation spots on our reservoirs here. While you’re enjoying the lakes, trails, picnic areas and campgrounds, enter our summer photo contest! The annual #TVAfun contest is running now through September 11. Use #TVAfun on Instagram and Twitter to enter, or submit your photo via Facebook using our #TVAfun tab.