Central Oregon Eclipse Events

If you haven't heard (we're kidding, we know you have) the must-see event of the summer, the Total Solar Eclipse, is fast approaching! Set to occur on Monday, August 21st, there are a number of eclipse related events happening around Oregon in the coming week!

For those brave enough to venture around Central Oregon, a full event list complied by The Source Weekly, can be found here. From educational events, to eclipse viewings at wineries and music festivals, the options for experiencing the eclipse are endless! Be sure to check back frequently, as event information and updates are regularly added to their list.

For those staying put in Bend, have no fear! While not in the path of totality, there are a still a number of local events going on to give you give you an unforgettable eclipse experience. A couple of our favorites place can be found below:

While Bend is often associated with its massive beer scene, we can't let its ciders and wines go unnoticed. A personal favorite of Locals Compass Founder & CEO, ATLAS Cider Company is not to be missed! Dedicating the Saturday before the eclipse to the stars, ATLAS is hosting EDM "The Path of Totality" Night. Join in the fun with cider, lights, lasers and electronic dance music on Saturday, August 20 from 9:00 pm to 12:30 am! Free to those 21 and over. Check out their event page for more information!

Another favorite, Naked Winery, will be hosting a Solar Eclipse Black Out Party in their Bend Tasting Room. Opening early at 9 am, the party will be started with Solar Sangria, wine specials, snacks, music and more. Don't forget to wear black attire and grab your solar eclipse viewing glasses! Full event details here.

We also recommend checking out Worthy Brewing, a local brewery who has dedicated their entire week to the event. Having recently experienced their newly opened Hopservatory (read more here) we know their dedication to the eclipse will be a huge success!

Presented by the Worthy Garden Club, Worthy Solar Eclipse Week will take place August 16-21st. The theme of this special program is "See the Light" and will consist of speakers from various disciplines that will address a number of topics for five consecutive nights before the Total Solar Eclipse.

Below, you'll find the full Solar Eclipse Week schedule, as outlined on their website:


Eleanor Latham PhD.: Someone Will Save Us 6:30-7:15pm
Popular culture typically reflects the hopes, fears, and interests of "the ordinary person" in whatever culture is producing the popular work-this is true whether we are looking at Classical Greek Tragedy or Wonder Woman.  Science Fiction, once called "Speculative Fiction," is particularly prone to this tendency, since it is not bound by requirements for realism.  Science Fiction, of course, includes many sub-genres (such as mutations, science experiment gone wrong, future history, and alternative history).  In honor of our current interest in the solar eclipse, I will focus on Science Fiction involving outer space. This talk will examine a few important movies in five categories: 1. Space: The Final Frontier; 2. We're the Good Guys (even when we are the bad guys); 3. Dying Earth; 4. Limits of the Human; and 5. Against All Odds.

Bob Grossfeld: Eclipse Craziness - What's the hoopla all about? 7:30-8:15pm
What is all the fuss about this upcoming eclipse? Let’s look at the history of these magical events and see why they are so special. We will take a look at what to expect here in Bend and the surrounding communities. Then look at the best way to view or take pictures of the eclipse.


Brandon Overstreet, M.S., Ph.D Candidate: Sun and Ice Sheet Rivers - An expedition to measure meltwater production on the Greenland Ice Sheet 6:30-7:15pm
Each summer, melting snow and ice form a complex network of rivers on the Greenland ice sheet. In many ways, these streams behave like temperate rivers in hyperdrive, efficiently carving channels and canyons into the ice surface. Flow in these rivers are highly sensitive to solar irradiation and temperature and accelerated melting on the Greenland ice sheet has led to consistent increases in global sea level. The rivers on the Greenland ice sheet provide efficient conduits for transporting meltwater to the ocean but the amount of water conveyed through these river systems is difficult to measure and not well understood. This talk describes recent expeditions into the interior of the Greenland Ice Sheet to gain intimate view of the relationship between temperature and the behavior of the rivers on the ice surface. The data collected will help refine estimates of meltwater production and sea level rise in the future and shape our shared understanding of global climate change.
Roger Worthington: Colonizing Outer Space - Is it All About Planting the Flag? 7:30-8:15pm
Is space travel and colonization an imperative for the survival of the human species? Can we get to the nearest “Goldilocks” planet? Even if we can colonize other planets, should we? What are the costs and benefits?


Scott Fisher PhD.: Darkness in Daytime – the Upcoming Total Solar Eclipse” 7:00pm
On the morning of August 21, 2017, central Oregon (and a 60-mile swath across the continental US) will witness one of nature’s most spectacular events, a total eclipse of the Sun. As the shadow of the Moon moves across the US from Lincoln City, OR to Charleston, SC it is expected that as many as 50 million people will travel to see this incredible spectacle. Dr. Scott Fisher from the University of Oregon Department of Physics will be one of those travelers, he will be near Madras taking part working with a team of NASA scientists on eclipse observations.

Before the event, on August 18th, Dr. Fisher will be giving a public-level talk about the eclipse in conjunction with the Worthy Garden Club and the Hopservatory. In this fun and informative talk Dr. Fisher will explain how eclipses occur, describe what we should expect to see, and talk about how to view the eclipse safely.

Please come out to hear one of our local experts talk about this once in a lifetime opportunity to see an eclipse in our own backyard!


Joann Eisberg PhD.: Science in the Moon's Shadow - a Brief History of the Science of Solar Eclipses 6:30-7:15pm
From ancient Greece and China to the present day, astronomers have used eclipse data to explore the architecture of the solar system, the physics of the sun, and the bending of space itself.  This talk briefly surveys some of the highlights of eclipse science.

Joann Eisberg fell in love with astronomy when she had the opportunity to study its history and to see how the ideas captured between the covers of science textbooks actually grew out of the actions of real people exploring nature.  She earned her PhD. in the History of Astronomy at Harvard University, and she is now Professor of Astronomy at Chaffey College.  She is interested in issues of science teaching, women in science and the role of science in modern society. She enjoys presenting the excitement of astronomy and its history to a wide range of audiences, from college classes to amateur astronomy clubs and scout troops.

Brad Hughes PhD.: The Search for Extraterrestrial Intelligence 7:30-8:15pm
Since the start of the SETI program, scientists have been searching for signs of intelligent life. Rather that just be passively listening for ET to call us, Astronomers are capable now of identifying planets that may harbor life. This will be a tour through some of the most recent discoveries in SETI, including planets that may have the right conditions for life to arise.

After earning his Undergraduate degrees in Physics, Philosophy, and Mathematics from Bowling Green State University in Ohio, Dr. Hughes went on to earn his Master’s in Physics and Master’s in Education at BGSU. After a brief stint teaching High School, Dr. Hughes completed his Phd work in Physics at UC Riverside. He then held a number of teaching posts at the College level until joining Chaffey College in August 2016 as a Professor of Astronomy

Grant Tandy: Sunday Solar 12-4pm - Starhop Night 9-11pm
Grant’s love for astronomy began with his innate curiosity of the natural world, wondering how things work and why. Once discovering the vastness and wonder of astronomy it quickly became a passion for him, leading to a career in teaching public astronomy programs. Grant will lead a telescopic journey starting with our Sun for Solar viewing Sunday at Noon. Grant will also be offering a special open house viewing Sunday night, no need to register for this. Just show up the night of and take the stairs directly to the 3rd floor Hopservatory. Suggested $5 donation for visitors aged 7 and over. Kids free.


Great American Eclipse of 2017

Did you hear? The Great American Eclipse is set to occur on August 21st. In case you’ve been living under a rock, or haven’t but want to have as much information as possible, here’s a recap from what we learned during Bend’s Chamber of Commerce What’s Brewing event, Solar Eclipse edition.  


Jim Todd, Director of Space Science Education at the Oregon Museum of Science and Industry (OMSI) had lots to share about what makes this eclipse such an unique opportunity. First, the last time there was a total solar eclipse visible within the continental United States (Washington, Oregon, Idaho, Montana, specifically) was back on February 26, 1979 and, unfortunately, the spectacle was dampered due to overcasted skies. Second, an event like this won’t happen for another 154 years. So, unless you’ve found the fountain of youth and are willing to share it with the rest of us, the odds of being around for that, are not in our favor. Lastly, it is being referred to as the Great American Eclipse because it will move across the entire continental United States, coast to coast. Out of all the cities in the path of totality, the city of Madras in Central Oregon is said to have the best chances of clear skies to view the eclipse.

Sun - Moon - Earth

A solar eclipse occurs when the Moon passes between the Earth and the Sun, thereby totally or partly obscuring the image of the Sun for a viewer on Earth. If you are in the path of totality, you’ll be able to see the corona, the outermost part of the sun’s atmosphere. And the hype about it, is real. He emphasized that there is nothing in this world that can compare to it, which is why so many people form all over the world are traveling to see it. So, it is good to know that, if you are not in the path of totality, you won’t see the corona and, the farther you are from the path, the less of the coverage you’ll see. Check out NASA’s Eclipse 2017 page for more information, including an interactive map with exact time of total eclipse based on coordinates


Kristin McConnell, Industry Relations Manager at the Central Oregon Visitors Association (COVA), shared some insights and tips.

Don’t get suck on highway 101

For those not familiar with Oregon’s coast, it’s important to note that, along with the colder weather, the coast is also known for the fog that rolls in during the earlier hours of the day. Given that the eclipse is set to occur in the morning hours, chances are you’ll miss the whole event if you are stuck on Oregon’s highway 101.

Communications plan

Although the State of Oregon has been preparing for this event for several years, there’s a chance some services may be interrupted, including cell reception. It was shared that most carries are set to bring additional resources to supply the increase in demand for network bandwidth but, it is encouraged that individuals have a communications plan. If all else fails and you can’t reach anyone by cell phone, what’s your plan?

2-1-1 phone number

A 211 number will be set up to handle general information questions from the community and visitors alike. For example, if you are needing to know where to dump waste water from your RV, or if a shelter is set up for any reason, you may receive information by calling that number.

Children and eye safety

This may be one of the most important pieces of information to be shared. Whatever you do, please make sure children understand and are kept safe from the eye damage that direct viewing of the sun during the eclipse can cause. Here are four ways to safely view a solar eclipse from the American Optometric Association.


If you live in Central Oregon or will find your way to our area for the eclipse, Sergeant Nathan Garibay, Deschutes County Sheriff's Office Emergency Service Manager, shared what to expect and how to prepare.

Due to the high number of people expected to come through (about 1,000,000 are said to be coming into Oregon for the event), he emphasized the importance of preparedness. He asks “can you survive for five to seven days without going to the supermarket, gas station or pharmacy?” If the answer is no, you have some preparing to do.

Food, gas, and medications

Although an eclipse is not a natural disaster, he urges citizens to treat is as one when it comes to preparedness.

  • For food, make sure you have enough available in case you can’t make it to the store, or food becomes scarce.
  • Given the expected influx from people driving into, through and out of Central Oregon, and how difficult it may be for gas providers to reach gas stations due to high traffic, it would be prudent to make sure you fill up your tank a few days before the eclipse. If possible, safely store a gas container with extra fuel, just in case. As a note, the highest percentage of visitors are expected to arrive on Friday, August 18, so plan accordingly.  
  • It is also suggested you make sure you refill (if need be) any medications you may need during a period of 3-5 days before and after the eclipse.

Stuck on the road?

Please, please, please exercise good judgment. Central Oregon is, and will probably still be, on high alert for wild fires. If you are on the road please don’t throw any cigarette butts out the window. Also, please don’t stop your car in the middle of the road if you happen to be stuck on the road during the total eclipse. Chances are very high that there will be lots of cars on the road a few days before, the day of, and a few days after the eclipse. We need everyone’s help to stay safe, keep our surroundings safe, and help everyone get home safely.

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A day in the life of a Seattle local

Surrounded by water, mountains and lush forests, Seattle is the perfect mix of big city and outdoor paradise. Rain or shine, the options are endless in this ever evolving Pacific Northwest city. As someone who has always called this city home, our Seattle Local Expert Margaret is here to share her perfect summer day in the city!

A perfect day in Seattle

In Seattle, I’m often looking skyward to guess how many layers of clothing I’ll need. It’s all right if I don’t see the sun right away, sunny days often emerge after a cloudy morning in the city. I start my day with a freshly brewed coffee at Caffe Vita on Capitol Hill, and then I’m ready to venture out among some of my favorite urban sights, and meet friends for an afternoon at the beach!

I take my coffee to-go, and walk through Cal Anderson Park on the path to the reservoir and water feature, often referred to as “the volcano," and then cross Broadway to catch the First Hill streetcar that runs by Seattle University, winding through to Chinatown and Pioneer Square. At Occidental Avenue and Jackson Street, I arrive at a favorite city promenade where I’ll meet some friends, and plan a day at Alki beach in West Seattle. First, I stop at the Glasshouse studio to watch local artists creating brightly colored wall plates and figurines in the hot shop, and then I take a few minutes and try to forecast the next move in a chess game played with giant pieces on an outdoor board in Occidental Park.

My friends arrive and we gather at a park table, under the old London Plane trees, to review the water taxi schedule and make the most of our time in Pioneer Square. As we walk toward Yesler Way, viewing art gallery windows and admiring historic brick buildings, we stop at the Pioneer Building and the bronze bust of Chief Seattle for whom our city is named. Small groups cluster around tour guides for the Underground, but we move around them to get to Full Tilt Ice Cream, which is sold from a small window shop on Yesler Way.

Next, we walk under Highway 99 to the waterfront where the King County water taxi departs. Once aboard, we find chairs on the aft deck allowing us to see Seattle’s panoramic skyline as the boat turns westward. The picturesque view includes Mount Rainier, the Smith Tower, the Great Wheel, and the Space Needle. It’s only a 15 minute crossing to West Seattle, where we notice people splashing around in wetsuits at the scuba diving park at Seacrest landing. Nearby is a kayak rental shop that also has bicycles and roller blades available, but today we’re taking it easy with a free shuttle van to the beach!

A ten minute ride through the Admiral neighborhood and we arrive at Alki, the birthplace of Seattle. We carry paper trays of fish n chips to a driftwood log, and with our toes in the sand, we reminisce about the summer while gazing west to the Kitsap Peninsula. A low-tide beach walk makes us thirsty for watermelon and cucumber margaritas at Cactus, and then we return to the beach to gather around a bonfire as the sun sets over the Olympic mountains. Talk about a perfect day!

For your next Seattle adventure, let Locals Compass do the planning for you! Our Locals can design a personalized travel itinerary based on your travel style and interests, and you’ll navigate Seattle just like a local!

Family First Day

Celebrated annually on the first Sunday of August, Family Day 2017 is officially here! Established as a way to encourage families to spend more time with one another, it’s the perfect occasion to spend summer’s long sunny days with the ones we love! Here in Bend, we have endless options for family fun both in and outdoors, year round. If you’re going to be in town to celebrate the day, check out some of our favorite family-friendly activities below!

Float the Deschutes River

On a hot summer day, there are few things better than floating the Deschutes River! Sit back, relax, and cool off in the company of your loved ones. Beginning at Riverbend Park in the Old Mill District and ending at Drake Park in downtown Bend, this float will provide hours of family fun! We recommend parking at Riverbend Park, using public parking on Columbia Street or using the Ride the River Shuttle ($3 for a full day with stops at Riverbend Park, McKay Park and Drake Park through Labor Day). When floating the Deschutes, be mindful of the rules of the river and be aware that state law requires life jackets for all boaters, paddleboarders and children 12 years old and under.

Take me out to the ball game

For Central Oregon, Bend Elks baseball games are a summertime staple! The Bend Elks are a collegiate wood bat summer league with players from all across the country. With games throughout the summer and general admission tickets starting at $7, a night at the ball field makes for a fun family outing. Visit the official website for ticket and schedule information. Local tip: General admission tickets are $2 every Tuesday, and Wednesday’s are free for children 12 and under!

Get outside!

Home to a countless number of parks and trail systems, Bend is giant playground for outdoor lovers of all ages and skill levels. The Bend Parks & Recreation District manages over 2,700 acres of parkland, including 81 parks and open spaces, and 65 miles of trails. Whether you’re looking for somewhere to picnic, catch a sunset, let the kids run around at the playground, or a hike along the river, there’s something for everyone. Follow the links for a full listing of parks and trails available in Bend.

Bouncing Off The Wall

This 11,000 square foot location is home gigantic, interactive inflatables in a clean, climate-controlled environment. A favorite of Bend Local Expert, Bouncing Of The Wall makes for great family fun! Family Fun Night is scheduled for the 2nd and 4th Friday of the month from 6-9 pm. For $25 families for four ($6 for each additional) can get three hours of fun, a large pizza, and two liter of soda! Escape the heat and register ahead here.

History in the High Desert

Since 1982, the High Desert Museum has allowed families to experience the natural and cultural history of Central Oregon. When temperatures rise, head inside to explore the exhibits with the whole family. You kids will have so much fun exploring and checking out the animals of the High Desert, they’ll forget they’re learning! Plan your family visit here.

If you’re visiting Bend on a family vacation, let Locals Compass do the planning for you! Our Family Travel Expert can design a personalized travel itinerary for you, and your family will navigate Bend like a local!

A day in the life of a Portland local

Portland is where the city and the great outdoors collide, and because of its amazing location within the Pacific Northwest, it has become a destination of never ending possibility and adventure! From food carts, Blazer games, rooftop patios, hiking in the Gorge, cycling the bridges, to 80s dance nights at the Crystal Ballroom, the options are endless! Our Portland Local Expert Mindi has come to appreciate everything this city has to offer and can’t wait to share her perfect Portland day with you!

A perfect day in Portland

With its close proximity to the city, hiking the Gorge has become a favorite past time! I wake up at the crack of dawn and head out to hike Dog Mountain, one of Portland’s favorite trails filled with wildflowers and breathtaking views of the Columbia River! The morning air is refreshing and breaking a sweat early is exhilarating. A sunrise start allows me to beat the crowds and get back into town to pick up a delicious vegan donut from Whole Foods bakery before they disappear. They almost never repeat recipes, so it’s bound to be one of a kind!

Portland is extremely bicycle friendly, and after returning home, I hop on my bike and ride further into town to grab a real lunch at the Koi Fusion food truck. They offer delicious Korean burritos and bowls made with all fresh ingredients, including my favorite, the chicken rice bowl with cucumber and cilantro. There are loads of food carts in Portland, making it hard to experience them all!

With food in my belly, I’m ready to move onto my next activity, rock climbing. I text some friends to meet at the NW Circuit gym for some bouldering and socializing. Climbing is always more fun with other people, and the relaxed nature of the sport allows for more conversation!

After a few hours it’s time to walk to Basecamp Brewery taphouse which offers two new food carts every year. The current Poblano Pepper taco truck has amazing carnitas burritos made with mouth-watering garlic tortillas. It calls me back every time! However, the smell of homemade sourdough pizza crust from ASH Wood Fired Pizza can also be tempting. The atmosphere lends to the laidback crowd chilling under the tattered flags and twinkle lights above. If we’re lucky, a local artist can be found strumming some tunes in the corner, adding only good vibes to this fantastic experience!

As the sun begins to drop, we jet over to Martha’s Rooftop for a few cocktails. The simple USS Martha, with tequila and lime, and a cozy blanket, are great accompaniments when witnessing the final sunbeams basking over the city from across the river. Of course you have to capture it on social media or else no one will know what a good time you’re having!

At this point, a few more friends have joined and the socializing is in full swing. Depending on the crew, Martha’s downstairs café offers a variety of board games waiting to be played! At the end of the day, meeting new people and building relationships is the key component to having the best and most memorable time in Portland!

What will your Portland adventure look like? Let Locals Compass do the planning for you! As a Local Expert I can design a personalized travel itinerary based on your travel style and interests, and you’ll navigate Portland like a local!

Summertime fun in Washington, DC

As summer begins to wind down in the nation’s capital, the number of activities is just beginning to pick up! From music, to comedy, to cultural events, there is something to be enjoyed by all. If you’ll be visiting Washington, DC in the coming months, and are looking for what to do, be sure to check out the events our Local Expert recommends below and use promo code DCLAUNCH when you request a free 2-day personalized travel itinerary!


ARTECHOUSE - Newly opened in June 2017, ARTECHOUSE immediately became a local favorite. The gallery is a one of a kind interacting experience that explores the emerging medium of art and technology. Make sure to take your camera with you, as this one of the most “Instagrammable” locations in Washington, DC right now!

When: 10:00 am - 10:00 pm
Where: 1238 Maryland Ave SW

Ai Weiwei: Trace at Hirshhorn - The Hirshhorn museum is one of the best free Smithsonian Museums located along the National Mall. Art exhibits are rotated frequently and this summer the Ai Weiwei exhibition is a must see!

When: June 28 – January 1, 2018
Where: Hirshhorn Museum and Sculpture Garden, Independence Avenue at 7th Street, SW

Summer of Yoko Ono - Also located at the Hirshhorn Museum is a selection of pieces by the iconic Yoko Ono. This free exhibit includes a selection of Ono’s most iconic installations.

When: June 17 – September 17, 2017
Where: Hirshhorn Museum and Sculpture Garden  Independence Avenue at 7th Street, SW


The 2017 Bentzen Ball Comedy Festival - The Bentzen Ball Comedy Festival is an annual event featuring high profile comedians, and one of the most anticipated events in DC by Washingtonians. Without a doubt, any night you attend will be filled with nonstop laughter!

When: October 26-29, 2017
Where: Various Locations


Many neighborhoods in Washington, DC host celebrations each year to celebrate their diverse cultures. These festivals are a great way for residents and visitors to experience the best of what these communities have to offer. On festival days, the main street in each neighborhood will be closed to vehicles and lined with food vendors, artists and musicians! Two upcoming festivals are the H Street Festival and Takoma Park Festival. We promise you won’t want to miss these for 2017!

H Street Festival

When: September 16, 2017
Where: H Street NE

Takoma Park Festival

When: October 1, 2017
Where: 7000 Carroll Ave, Takoma Park, MD 20912


DC Outdoor Movies - Throughout the summer, at various outdoor locations around the city, films are being screened for free! Don't forget to bring a blanket, snack and a bottle of wine. It's a great way to relax and wind down on a warm summer night! For locations and a full schedule, follow this link.

When: Various nights through September
Where: Various Locations


On weekends, you can spend countless hours browsing the amazing local foods and crafts offered at DC’s markets. Not only are they a great way to explore the different neighborhoods around the city, but a great time to pick up a nice breakfast or lunch, or even a great gift!

Dupont Circle Farmers Market

When: Sundays, 10:00 am - 1:00 pm (January to March 2017)
Sundays, 8:30 am - 1:30 pm (April to December 2017)
Where: 1500 20th Street NW between Massachusetts Avenue and Hillyer Place

Eastern Market Flea Market

When: 10:00 am - 5:00 pm
Where: 7th SE between C St & Pennsylvania Ave


Jazz in the Garden - This concert series offers a showcase of Washington area jazz musicians. Every Friday music listeners pack into the Sculpture Garden at the National Gallery of Art and enjoy live music starting at 5:00 pm.  Pack a picnic, bring a blanket and sit back and relax while you enjoy the music! Follow this link for the full concert schedule.

When: Fridays, May 19 - August 25, 2017 from 5:00-8:30 pm
Where: Constitution Ave NW & 7th Street

All Things Go Classic - The District's premier music festival returns this year with a lineup boasting well known musicians including Foster the People, Galantis, and Cashmere Cat. For concerts goers, this is the must attend music festival in the area! You can check out the full lineup and purchase tickets here. Single-day and 3-day passes are still available!

When: October 6-8, 2017
Where: 1309 5th St NE

The Worthy Hopservatory

It’s no secret that Bend is known for its extensive beer scene. With 22 breweries and the well-known Bend Ale Trail, it’s a beer lover’s paradise! While beer is typically a win on its own, one brewery is taking the experience to the next level.

A year and a half in the making, the Worthy Hopservatory is now open to the public and allows visitor’s close their day with an ice cold beer and travel millions of light years back in time. Partnering with the Oregon Observatory at Sunriver, the Worthy Garden Club is now offering weekly tours which include educational programing to raise scientific awareness about scale, size, time, distance and speed in our solar system, and the opportunity to look through the 16 inch Ritchy-Chretién telescope. This brand new, one of a kind facility, is a must see if you’re in Bend, and Locals Compass recently had the opportunity to join in on the fun!

After dinner and drinks in the Worthy Beer Garden, which offers the coziest environment complete with string lights, fire pits and hanging flowers, the sun starts to set, the stars start to peek out, and it’s almost time for the tour to start. The first stop of the night is the “Transporter Room.” Decorated in beautiful mosaics showcasing the wonders of the universe and a wall mural depicting the Earth rising into the great beyond, we’re welcomed to the Worthy Garden Club tour.

Up a spiral staircase to the second level, is the “Control Room.” Chock full of space information and imagery, this room provides and overview of the entire cosmic trip you’ll receive. Also included is a 12-minute informational video, with Jerry Niehuser from Oregon Observatory at Sunriver. Jerry, one of the longest active employees of the Oregon Observatory, not only offers a wealth of space knowledge and comedic relief, but an important reminder for all of us to go outside and enjoy the night sky!

Up one more floor is the Worthy Dome, where visitors get a $70,000 view into the night sky through a 16 inch Ritchy-Chretién telescope! Aside from the price tag, another crazy fact about this telescope is that the light viewers see through the eyepiece is actually light that originated thousands, if not millions of years ago! Depending on weather, atmospheric conditions and the season, viewers will get to experience at least three of the following objects: Saturn, Jupiter, Mars, the moon, double stars, clusters, and/or a nebula. Conditions were clear during our visit, and we were able to view Jupiter, Albireo B, Saturn, the Ring Nebula and the M13 star cluster as pointed out by Observatory Manager, Grant Tandy.

Following an hour of star gazing and space questions, our 9 pm tour comes to an end. An unexpected and out of this world experience, the Worthy Hopservatory is not one to be missed! Weekly tours are offered Wednesday and Sunday at 9 and 10 pm for only $5 per person (ages 6 and are free) with advanced registration highly recommended. For those that can’t make the full hour tour, open viewing hours are offered Thursday, Friday, and Saturday nights from 9-11 pm at no cost (donations appreciated) with Grant Tandy, Observatory Manager.

For more information and tickets, follow this link to the Worthy Hopservatory website!

Worthy's 16 inch Ritchy-Chretién telescope

Worthy's 16 inch Ritchy-Chretién telescope

Mountain views and sunsets from inside the Dome

Mountain views and sunsets from inside the Dome

Grant Tandy, Observatory Manager during the Hopservatory Tour

Grant Tandy, Observatory Manager during the Hopservatory Tour

That's a wrap!

That's a wrap!

A day in the life of a Washington, DC local

For Washingtonian's, the goal is to make the most out of every day. If you can think of something you want to do, chances are you can find it happening nearby! There’s never a shortage of new brunch places to try or events to attend, and you can always find a friend to accompany you to a fitness class, beer garden or other activity. In our nation’s capitol, opportunities are endless and Washington, DC Local Expert Joshua is here to share his favorite summer weekend!

Picture this. It's a Saturday morning and you wake up to a few texts confirming plans for the morning. Some days it's a run around the monuments or a class at one of the seemingly infinite spin or yoga studios. Today, it’s climbing! Just a short ride away, you decide to hop on the metro with friends and head over to Virginia for some bouldering at Earth Treks, an indoor climbing gym.

After a few hours of hitting the rock walls, you decide to call it quits and head out to prepare for a fun and relaxing afternoon. Summertime is the best time for get-togethers, and what better way to spend the day than rooftop barbecuing and swimming. A must stop on the way is Union Kitchen Grocery, a shop that stocks mainly local products. You pick up some rosé and snacks, and continue on to relax by the pool and indulge in the best kind of conversations.

After a glass or two of wine, you head over to the Wet Dog Tavern, a dog friendly bar and DC’s first beer garden, to meet up with some friends and play with the crew’s newest puppy. We love our dogs in DC! On the way there, you stop by Compass Coffee for a nitro cold-brew to keep you energized and refreshed.

Following an afternoon of drinks and fun, it’s time for a little rest and relaxation. You make it back to your row house in the up and coming Columbia Heights area and relax for a few hours before hitting the town for the night.

The first stop of the night is Gloria’s, a cash-only restaurant serving authentic Salvadorian food. Pupusas, tortillas stuffed with pork, beans and cheese, are a must have on the menu! Next up, is dancing with friends at the Wonderland Ballroom. The DJ is playing throwback tunes, making it easy to dance the night away. As the night comes to an end and with plans to attend a show at the Kennedy Center the next day, you know you’ve made the most of your summer weekend in Washington, DC.

For your next Washington, DC adventure, let Locals Compass do the planning for you! Our Locals can design a personalized travel itinerary based on your travel style and interests, and you’ll navigate Washington, DC just like a local!

Total Solar Eclipse 2017

While we’ve barely kicked off July, and we wish everyone a happy and safe Independence Day holiday, it’s never too early to start preparing for the summer event of the year - the 2017 total solar eclipse! Taking place on Monday, August 21st, this is the first total solar eclipse since 1979 and people have been planning for it for the last several years!

While the eclipse will be viewable from many different locations across the nation, those of us in Central Oregon will have access to the path of totality, meaning viewers will get to experience total darkness firsthand. Madras, Oregon (less than an hour northeast of Bend on a normal traffic day) falls directly in the path, with totality beginning at 10:19 am PDT and lasting for approximately two minutes.

What does this mean for Bend? While not in the path of totality, Bend is close enough to these top viewing locations that residents can expect to experience the effects of this highly anticipated event. Hotels and campsites have been booked for ages! With an influx of so many visitors and traffic to the area, and an uncertainty of what to expect, authorities are ramping up and preparing much like a natural disaster. It’s always better to be safe than sorry!

Prepare 7-10 days ahead: With such an increase of visitors to the area, locals are recommended to stock up on essentials 7-10 days ahead of time in hopes of beating the crowds, avoiding shortages, and allowing for stores to restock before the big day. This includes cash, groceries, water, fuel, medications and any additional supplies you may need for the event. Don’t forget to grab a pair of solar eclipse glasses too!

Increased traffic: It’s unavoidable, but important to note that traffic is going to be absolutely insane during the day of the eclipse and the days that lead up to it and follow. With so many visitors to the area, typical driving times are going to increase tenfold (it’s currently estimated a 8+ hour to Madras on the day of the eclipse), so plan ahead and practice nice driving! The Oregon Department of Transportation's TripCheck website is a great resource for traffic conditions and delays, closures and hazards. If you’re sticking around town, opt for ride sharing, bicycles, or the free shuttle.

Vehicles aside, people should prepare for longer wait times in restaurants, long lines in stores and delays to regularly scheduled services including trash, recycling, mail and other delivery services. Patience will be of utmost importance during this time.

How to view and what to bring: Viewing a solar eclipse without proper eye protection can lead to serious damage or injury as it’s unsafe to look directly at the sun during any phase of the eclipse, aside from “totality,” when the moon is completely blocking the sun. Solar eclipse glasses, which are special purpose solar filters, are the only safe way to look at the sun during no or partial eclipse. Regular sunglasses are not strong enough. For more information on eye protection, follow this link.

In addition to solar eclipse glasses, don’t forget to bring water, snacks, medications, comfortable shoes and layers, and cash. If driving, be sure to stock up on fuel and be prepared for traffic delays.

Addition information: The total solar eclipse is one of nature’s grandest experiences and one not to be missed! Click here for more information about the eclipse, it’s phases, how to view it and more.

Red, white and blue, in Bend!

Summer has arrived and Independence Day is right around the corner! Grab your family and friends and join in the celebration. If you'll be in or around Bend, here's all the fun to be had!

4th of July Pet Parade: A much-loved Bend tradition, the 4th of July Pet Parade is the largest in town and dates back to the 1930s. Kids of all ages are invited to participate and registration is not necessary! Lineup is at 9 am in front of the School Administration Building on Wall Street, and the parade begins promptly at 10 am. With summer temperatures at a high, pet owners are asked to be mindful of the comfort level of their pets, allowing for shade and water breaks, and recognizing the signs of heatstroke and exhaustion. Local tip: Downtown road closures begin at 9 am and last through noon. Alternative transportation is recommended, but parking can be found at the Lava Street Garage, if necessary. Free valet bike parking is also available in Drake Park near the permanent restrooms.

Old Fashioned 4th of July Festival: What better way to celebrate our nation’s independence than with some old fashioned family fun? From pie eating contests, live music, artisans, and games for all ages, there’s something for the whole family to enjoy! Local tip: Make a day of it! Start downtown with the Pancake Breakfast, join in on the Pet Parade, and continue onto the Festival after! See below for the full event schedule.

  • 8:00-11:00 am: Pancake Breakfast
  • 11:00 am-4:00 pm: Live Music, Entertainment & Pie Eating Contest
    • 11:00 am - National Anthem Bella Acappella
    • 11:10 am - Declaration of Independence
    • 11:30 am - Five Pint Mary Band
    • 1:00 pm - Smokey the Bear & Friends
    • 1:15 pm - Pie Eating Contest (sign ups start at 11 am, space is limited)
    • 2:00 pm - Nate Botsford Band
  • 11:00 am-3:00 pm: Old Fashioned Games
    • 3-Legged Race
    • Gunny Sack Race
    • Parachute Play
    • Hula Hoop Contest
    • Ball Relays
    • Water Balloon Toss
    • Sponge Relay
    • Watermelon Eating Contest
  • 11:00 am-4:00 pm: Kids & Family Fun Area

4th of July Fireworks Spectacular: Finish your day with a bang at Bend’s 4th of July Fireworks Spectacular! Launched from the top of Pilot Butte at 10 pm, the fireworks show can be seen across town anywhere with a view of the butte, city parks being the most popular viewing spots.

If you can’t make the Bend show, there are fireworks to be seen in other locations around Central Oregon:

  • Redmond: Deschutes County Fair & Expo Center, 10 pm
  • La Pine: Frontier Heritage Park, 10 pm
  • Madras: Sahalee Park, 10 pm

4th of July Fireworks Flight: If you’re feeling more adventurous than fireworks in the park, book a tour with Big Mountain Heli Tours for the ultimate 4th of July experience. High above the crowds, you’ll get a front row seat to Bend Fireworks Spectacular, including views all the way to Redmond. For more information and to book this flight, click here!

Concerts at the Les Schwab Amphitheater: If live music is more your style, spend your evening at the Les Schwab Amphitheater with musical artists Deftones & Rise Against, featuring Thrice. Tickets are on sale now! Doors open at 5 pm and the show starts at 6:15 pm.