November 11, 2016 3:12 PM
No vacancy. Hotel rooms are now essentially sold out for next year’s Wyoming Eclipse Festival in Casper next year. Casper lies directly in the optimal viewing path for the total solar eclipse on August 21st of next year. It’s the such eclipse visible from the continental United States in nearly four decades.
“We have one hotel which is holding off on taking bookings until January, otherwise all hotels claim to be full,” says Anna Wilcox, the Executive Director of the Wyoming Eclipse Festival. “Some of them are holding blocks for large groups that are filling up that way, but for the average person to sit down and start placing calls to hotels in the area, they’re probably to the point of hitting a dead end.” Some of the rooms have gone for prices of $750.00 per night, and higher, with rates set by the various individual hotel corporations.
Wilcox says there are still ample camping options, and they’re directing folks to their website eclipsecasper.com for updated information on lodging and other resources.
Meantime, if you’re thinking of renting out your home or spare space, you can find information on Airbnb or similar companies. “There are folks that are, ‘I want to get out of town and might as well make some money off my property’ which is awesome, there’s going to be plenty of money to go around for everyone. And there are others that are, ‘I want to open my home, the three spare bedrooms that I have, or the basement etc., to host someone.’”
If you’re considering hosting camping on your private property, Wilcox says you should check with the city or county about rules and permits. “They both have a different process, they both have potentially different forms that need filled out, different permits that need applied for and/or fees, both for the purpose of safety and communication”, she says. “So if you’re looking to do something on your private property whether city or county, we’re encouraging people to follow through these processes.”
The information will help officials and organizers in distribution of resources, safety and planning purposes.
“You know, everyone’s an entrepreneur, and that’s fantastic and we don’t want to discourage that especially since some people are providing a service, or providing something that will be needed because of the great number of people that we’re expecting,” Wilcox points out.”The idea is how can we control and manage that so that it remains something that is helpful versus turning into something that could be harmful.”
The eclipsecasper.com website is intended to be a resource and reference for all information surrounding the event. Wilcox says if you need help you can either contact them by phone, or email them through the site.