Apr 4, 2024 - Things to Do

Solar eclipse events in Chicago

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360 Chicago is one way to see the solar eclipse from high in the sky. Photo courtesy of 360 Chicago.

From watch parties to ice cream flavors, there are many ways to make Monday's solar eclipse special.

Why it matters: The extremely rare event is a chance to turn a regular weekday afternoon into a forever memory.

🌇 Viewing events

Adler Planetarium: If you're going to witness a scientific marvel in the sky, the planetarium seems the obvious choice. The outdoor event includes safe solar viewing through telescopes and eclipse photography. (Free)

  • The event begins at 11am, and prime viewing in Chicago will be at 2:07pm.

Museum of Science and Industry is also hosting a viewing with solar telescopes and a live broadcast of the eclipse from Carbondale in southern Illinois, which is in the path of totality. (Free)

  • Event begins at 10am; outdoor telescopes will not be available if it's cloudy.

Streeterville Social: The third-floor bar at the Loews Hotel will have rooftop viewing, cocktails and food. (Varies)

Pullman National Historic Park: Selfie opportunities, snacks and interactive exhibits beginning at 1pm. (Free)

  • It's weather permitting, so confirm it's on if weather is iffy.

360 Chicago: Avoid obstructions by getting a panoramic view of the eclipse on the 94th floor of the John Hancock, 1,030 feet above street level. ($30 and up)

🍦 Food deals

Intergalactic ice cream: Chicago locations of Jeni's are offering special flavors for the eclipse, including:

  • Nebula Berry — blueberry and raspberry with an elderflower fragrance
  • Cosmic Bloom — citrusy like a mandarin, refreshing like a kiwi, and punchy like passion fruit
  • Purple Star Born — reminiscent of Concord grape and puckery-like blackcurrants

Plus, on Monday Jeni's is offering Space Dust, a fizzy popping candy topping, for free.

🍪 Insomnia Cookies: Moon-shaped cookie cake is available through April 8 and feeds up to eight people.

  • On the day of the eclipse, a purchase of $5 or more gets you one free cookie.

🍩 Krispy Kreme: The "Total Solar Eclipse Doughnut" is glazed, dipped in black chocolate icing with silver sprinkles and a whole Oreo cookie in the middle.

  • Available April 5-8.
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